In the years preceding the English Civil war the demand for small change was met by the Lennox and Rose farthings, issued under royal license. When these licenses lapsed, many thousands of local issuers filled the gap. Starting in 1647 they were produced until 1672 in England (later in Ireland). At first the only denomination was one farthing, but later half pennies and even pennies were produced. The great majority would appear to have been made at the Tower of London from dies by engravers such as David Ramage
We know of more than 600 tokens for use in the area. Issuers including publicans, brewers and many different tradesmen. They identify the issuer (sometimes only initials) and often his wife. There are also 20 issued by women in their own right. The issuers' locations included heavily populated areas such as Whitechapel and Wapping, expanding areas, such as Spitalfields and Mile End and also more rural villages such as Poplar and Bow.