Generally Dating English Tins There are three major types of English tobacco tins as well as some minor varieties: The 'knife lid' or 'cutter top' tin style appears to have come into use during World War I (although there may be evidence of late 19 century use) and was generally used through the 1960s.This tin type has two tops, a disposable metal inner top used to create an airtight seal and a loose metal outer top.In either case, once the point is activated the outer top is placed on the inner top and pressed down with the result that the cutting point pierces the inner top.
The 'coin twist' tin, which is still used today, appears to have been introduced in the 1940's following World War II and by the '70s became the predominant tin style.
Some early 'coin twists' dating to no later then the early 1950's had rubber gaskets that extended past the outer lip of the top or rubber stoppers that plugged a hole in the bottom of the tin.
Thus when you pick up a tin of English made tobacco it is important to know the age of that tin in order to determine the character and maturity of the tobacco, where the tobacco was blended and who was the actual blender.
Fortunately, it is in fact possible to approximately date English tinned tobacco.
The 'pop top' or 'ring pull' tin was introduced in the 1970's and like the 'coin twist' continues in use through today.
In essence it is a modern day 'knife lid' with a disposable inner metal top that is pulled away and a plastic outer top that is used to cover the tin after initial opening.
First, preservatives will retard the aging process.
Second, the chemicals and the tobaccos will neither uniformly age nor maintain the original balance of flavors.
Into the 1980's the tops of this type of tin often had text, pictorial or a combination of text and pictorial instructions.
The text or combination of text and pictorial instruction the early or mid '70s.
I have never seen this specific type of tin for an English blend but I have seen a few instances of a similar style lacking an attached hinged lever (you use a coin, at least I do) on two and four ounce and Sullivan tins dating to the 1960's.