Summary. Stephens Gaskets, a local manufacturer of shims, gaskets, and washers, is supporting the 4600 Gifts project by providing metal washers for Commonwealth gifts during the Birmingham Commonwealth Games. These washers, reflecting Birmingham’s industrial heritage, are being transformed into unique handcrafted gifts by local residents and artists in various workshops. This community-driven project, welcoming athletes and visitors, celebrates collaboration and the spirit of the Commonwealth Games.


Stephens Gaskets, local manufacturer of Shims, Gaskets and Washers supports the 4600 Gifts project with metal washers for the Commonwealth Games.

Birmingham and the Black Country is to set host the Commonwealth Games in July 2022. So, as a welcome, every athlete and other visitors will receive a personal goodie bag with a locally hand made gift.

Stephens Gaskets Supplying Metal Washers

Stephens Gaskets Ltd are supporting the 4600 Gifts programme by supplying metal washers to be used in the gifts. Based in Oldbury Stephens Gaskets provides a complete shim manufacturing service to a wide range of industrial markets. They have been manufacturing gaskets and ring shims since the company was established in 1947.

With Birmingham having a strong industrial heritage, Craftspace, who is running the project, wanted the materials to be sourced locally. Therefore Stephens Gaskets were the perfect choice. The base of the gifts are made using our washers. There are two a couple of different sizes, a large washer and then two smaller washers.

You Can Take Part Too

Craftspace are inviting local residents to take part in various workshops being held across Birmingham to help create these 4600 Gifts. The Birmingham residents will work alongside local artists and upcycle the local materials to make the handmade welcome gifts. The group of product designers, artists and designer makers include Pottinger + Cole, Laura Nyahuye, Mahawa Keita and Kalandra McFarquhar. Additionally, these are artists all based in the West Midlands.

Local workshops in Moseley and Winson Green are taking place during April and May. Also, the next mass-making event will take place in Cathedral Square, Birmingham from 13th – 15th May.

No Experience Needed

The project is not made for children, however, no experience is required to participate in the project. The gifts have been developed so that those with minimum craft skills can have a go. As well as, those who are more experienced can be more adventurous. All materials, such as yarn, twine, fabrics, will be provided. In addition, embellishments are encouraged such as beads and tassels.

Connecting Communities

Starting with Stephen’s Gaskets metal washers, individuals will upcycle them by crafting with yarn or other locally sourced materials from the Scrapstore in Birmingham. They are chosen to reflect the colours of the flags of the Commonwealth nations and territories. Consequently, connected people from different communities, creating friendships and bringing everyone together. It’s an amazing celebration to be a part of, not only with the people of Birmingham, but something that can be cherished by athletes.

Stephens Gaskets Director Piers Bayton Said:

“It is our privilege to help and support this 4600 Gift project. I think it is fantastic for Birmingham and the local community to come together, whether they have any craft experience or not, to make something personal for each athlete at the games. I’m sure the athletes will truly appreciate the time and effort taken by individuals to create these unique items”

The 4600 Gifts will showcase a selection of the gifts at the Library in Birmingham from 30th June – 9th July 2022.


To find out more and to join in visit

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