The Saint Petersburg collection 21.11.2017
The jubilee tokens were sold without packing at the price of a trip (only at the stations they were dedicated to) and in blisters (one can buy a token together with a card at any station of the metro). According to the collectors’ tradition, there was a queue to the metro cash offices a few hours before their opening. As a rule, tokens without packing are bought during the first minutes of operation because their number is considerably smaller than of those in blisters.
Mikhail Goncharenko, Head of Sales and Marketing Department of the Saint Petersburg Mint has told us about the creation and production of the tokens as well as the history of cooperation of the Saint Petersburg Mint and the Saint Petersburg Metro.
“Our cooperation with the Saint Petersburg Metro started as soon as it was opened in 1955. The Mint stroke the first tokens for the Leningrad Metro. Then they started using 5-kopeck coins that we also stroke. And later on, the tradition of minting tokens was resumed”.
Since 2005, the metro started the tradition of minting jubilee tokens that may not only be applied as a means for entering metro, but are also souvenirs and collection items.
Sergey Kornilov, Head of the Artistic Bureau of the Saint Petersburg Mint, developed the sketches of tokens, including the modern ordinary one.
Sergey remembers how he created a sketch of a metro token over 20 years ago.
“I wanted to create something directly associated with the Saint Petersburg classicism. As a result, there appeared letter “M” on one side of the token, and a monogram of Saint Petersburg symbolizing our city. I chose the monogram, drew some of its elements, and it turned out laconic and classic, pleasant to hold in one’s hands, according to many Petersburgers”.
“Since then, the token has changed only slightly. When I hold a metro token, I am pleased to remember that work and feel connected to the object that has become a part of everyday life in Saint Petersburg”.
In 2005, Sergey Kornilov developed sketches of the first and all the following jubilee tokens of the Saint Petersburg metro.
“Stations were depicted on the tokens. Perhaps, the most difficult thing was to choose an aspect angle of the station building, so that it looked beautiful and recognizable. We worked through a lot of material – we took pictures, searched for images in the internet and used the materials provided by the metro”.
It was different with the series of the jubilee tokens dedicated to various types of metro coaches – we used the materials provided by the metro.
Sergey Kornilov does not collect coins or tokens of which he made sketches.
“First of all, I have no passion for collecting, and secondly, it is a very difficult thing to obtain metro tickets – collectors spend a lot of time and money on that”.
Just like the majority of Petersburgers, Sergey Kornilov believes the Saint Petersburg Metro is one of the most beautiful in the world. In his opinion, “Gorkovskaya” station is especially beautiful.
“Olga Yanchenko, a young designer, developed the tokens produced this November. However, I would also like to work upon the next issues and realize interesting ideas”.
Mikhail Goncharenko explained that the token minting is carried out in the automatic mode.
“We have minted 10 thousand pieces of every kind of the tokens, and 1 thousand tokens of every kind without packing were sold via the metro cash offices. One can buy the rest of the tokens as souvenirs, in blisters at the metro cash offices only. According to the conditions of our agreement, we ship all the minted products to our customers, therefore the tokens will not be on sale at the shops of the Mints of Goznak”.
“I am pleased to note that we make all issues in the same style during all these years – the issues put together represent a unique collection of tokens. Moreover, every issue also has an artistic detail uniting all themes of the issue.
Thus, there is the same laurel branch uniting the issue, on every token of the November issue of 2017.
It is also important to note that there is a security raster element on all the tokens – at different viewing angle, figures “1967” and “2017” appear on the riffled metal area.
I hope that our fruitful co-operation with the Saint Petersburg Metro will continue. They have already announced the issue of five commemorative tokens with the new stations next year. We are getting ready to take part in the tender procedure they will announce for the production of tokens”.
We would like to remind those who haven’t bought the jubilee tokens of 2017 at the metro cash offices on November 18 – tokens in souvenir packing will be on sale at all the metro cash offices at the price of 390 roubles.