Market Lavington Museum

A paraffin stove

Campers and folk on a day out, wanting to be able to boil a kettle, warm a can of soup or make a simple meal might take a small canister gas stove with them. But the Camping Gaz company dates from 1949. Prior to this people used primus stoves. Primus paraffin stoves date from 1892 onwards and primus gets used as a generic term, though other makes were available.

At Market Lavington Museum, we have one made by Monitor Engineering of Stretchford, Birmingham.


It is a compact little stove with a wind shield and three bent rods, providing a base for a kettle or saucepan.

Our stove was designed to be taken out on holidays and expeditions and packs away into a tin. This would have been bright red, with a yellow lid with charming pictures which, sadly, are now very faded.

stove tin

However, we can just read that the Monitor Touring Stove was for Every Outdoor Occasion, with pictures suggesting it might be taken by caravan holiday makers, cyclists, motorcyclists or car drivers. We think it may date from the 1950s.