Would be grateful for help in pinning down more detail on the following.
Case length: 2.50"
Bullet diameter: 0.310"
Headstamp appears to be: Kings Norton Metal Co. Ltd, Abbey Wood, Kent, UK.
My searching has come up with a number of different cartridge names:
.375/.303 Westley Richards Accelerated Express
Could anyone indicate if one of the above names is more appropriate, or if there is another more applicable name?
Would be grateful for any additional background information, further to that provided by RichT appended below.
Appreciate earlier IAA post from RichT:
Joe here is something I found, I cant remember where or when I got this but it is about the match bullets from the same era.
The .303” “Patent Pointed” Cartridge.
This cartridge was intended for “Match Rifle” shooting. This is a specific discipline, shot at distances from 800 to 1,000 yards initially, and from 1910 at 900 to 1,100 yards, under NRA rules, and was intended to be semi-experimental in nature, in that, provided the rifle and ammunition were of a military character, almost any combination of action, barrel and ammunition could be used. Prior to 1897 there was no restriction in calibre, but in that year a maximum calibre of .315” was introduced, together with a weight limit of 3.25 lbs. for the barrel, and so the previously favoured black-powder rifles, mostly in .450” calibre, disappeared, being replaced by the .303” and the .256” (6.5mm) Mannlicher, the latter being the favourite as the ammunition was considered to be better than the .303” that was available.
In 1903, the “Palma Trophy” match was shot at Bisley, and the King’s Norton Metal Co. (who up until then had been known to shooters mostly for their .303” ammunition made for the Government) were persuaded to make a better quality .303” cartridge for the British team. It had a bullet of about 225 grains weight (10 grains more than the Service bullet) and a heavier charge of powder, and shot very well, and because of this was then marketed commercially as the “.303” Palma”, with many of the Match Rifle shooters changing over to it…
In 1905, Kynoch introduced their .375/303 Axite round, loaded with a 225-grain bullet, in competition with the “Palma” cartridge, this new round having a larger case, and a higher velocity.
All the above cartridges had round-nosed bullets, but in 1906 at least two of the Match Rifle shooters had the King’s Norton Co. make them some pointed bullets, which they shot in competition, with some minor success. More work to improve the bullets was done by both the KNMCo and Kynoch, resulting in each of them announcing for the 1907 season the “Palma Pointed”, and the “Swift” bullets, respectively. Both these bullets weighed 225 grains, and were very similar to each other.
It was at about this time that the Birmingham Metal & Munitions Co. decided to get in on the act, by introducing their “Patent Pointed” cartridge. This had an even heavier bullet than the other two, at 235 grains, and was stated to have a high velocity, but I do not know what the actual figure was. The Patent referred to was British Patent No. 3429 of 1905; however, this was not taken out by the BM&MCo., but by DWM of Germany!
The shooting quality of this round must have been quite good, as it was seriously considered as the round for the British team in the rifle shooting events of the 1908 Olympic Games; however, in the end the team chose the “Palma Pointed” round, as it was considered that the quality control of the KN Company was better.
There was a relatively small market for any of these rounds, as the “Match Rifle” discipline was shot by only between 60 and 100 persons (compared to about 1,500 competitors who shot for the “King’s Prize” in the “Service Rifle” events), most of whom were well-off gentlemen with plenty of leisure time, and there was plenty of competition for their custom, with Eley, King’s Norton, and Kynoch all producing .303” and .375/303” (and later.280”) ammunition with pointed bullets of various weights. The “Patent Pointed” cartridges were relatively expensive at £9/2/6d per thousand (“Government” ammunition being £5 per 1,000), and do not seem to have been anywhere near as popular as the KN-made cartridges, with the result that very few are seen today.
This packet is the only one I have ever seen, (it’s not in my collection, alas) and must date from about 1907-1908. The round is advertised in a BM&MCo catalogue/price list of about 1907 vintage (as shown below), and was still in the Nobel’s Ammunition Price List of 1912-13 (still at the same price). With the outbreak of the First World War, all Match Rifle shooting was suspended, and when it resumed in 1919, all the competitors were obliged to use the .303” Magnum cartridge, and so the “Patent Pointed” passed from the scene.