What was this Northumberland Coal Company medal issued for?

I was wondering if anyone has any information regarding a medal which belonged to my great grandfather.

The medal is 32 mm in diameter and struck in silver. On its obverse is an embossed depiction of a miner's safety lamp around which is the engraved legend "THE COWPEN COAL COMPANY LTD." Its reverse bears the following engraved legend in three lines; "1893 / W. Hopper / 1946" all within a wreath of laurels below which can bee seen the embossed makers mark "VAUGHTONS BIRM" in very small letters. The reverse side also carries a silver hall mark for 1946 from the Birmingham assay office together with a further maker's mark in the form of the small incuse stamped initials "V&S" (i.e. Vaughton & Sons).

Any further information regarding this medal be much appreciated.

Submitted By: Mark Hopper
Date: May 2006

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