So Who Was Mettoy Playcraft?
Mettoy Company Ltd. was founded in the UK in the early 1930s by Philipp Ullmann and Arthur Katz, who had both been part of the Nuremburg toy industry community, until the rise of the Nazi Party forced them to leave Germany.
The Mettoy name was registered in 1932, and the company commenced making traditional Nuremburg-style tinplate lithographed toys (with or without clockwork motors) in 1934, at a site in Northampton.
As with most toy manufacturers, production switched to war work during World War Two, and Mettoy Company’s wartime work focused on pressed steel products such as canisters and ammunition boxes, which forced the company to look at new processes and techniques, and move beyond their original "comfort zone" of Nuremberg-style printed tinplate.
Towards the end of the War, Mettoy started planning a major new factory in Fforestfach, Swansea, Wales, with work starting in 1948, and the factory being opened in 1949 by George VI.
Playtown was a range of plastic clip-together kits that included the walls, roofs, doors, windows and signage needed to make a variety of town buildings.