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The Variations Of The Multiple Crown Wilding Stamp Papers 1958 - 1968

 
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Valued Member
United Kingdom
337 Posts
Posted 05/29/2022   12:39 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this topic Add Wilding mad to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
Introduction........

Much of the information found in stamp catalogues has been obtained from the normal stamp collector who has taken the time and trouble to check for variations of the different aspects appertaining to a postage stamp in the form of it's colour, perforations, printing errors,dies and plates used, watermarks, and the paper that the watermark was found in.

Out of all these features stated the bulk of a postage stamp is contained in it's paper.

Over the last 4 years and because of differentials noted I decided to study the stamp papers used to print the multiple crown Wilding stamps of the United Kingdom, this also included regionals and commemoratives, due to the fact that I was finding papers not listed in specialised catalogues that in my opinion should have been there.

This article gives you an insight as to some of my findings based on various factors in the process of making paper and the reasons as to how errors crept into their production and some of the rectifications that was attempted.

When I started the study, one of the first things I needed to know was how was stamp paper produced and by whom, this lead me to a small town in South Devon by the name of Ivybridge and the Stowford paper mill who obtained it's water from the local river Erme.

This was the only source from which the GPO obtained its watermarked paper for the production and printing of postage stamps during the 1960s, various printers had been allocated for the production of stamps but mainly Harrison and sons were responsible for the printing of the low value definitives and commemoratives, the owners of the paper mill at the time was Wiggins Teape who later became ArjoWiggins.

I have managed to obtain a short film taken in the early 1960s of the mill in question in its production of paper, that shows the different stages that the paper went through prior to its dispatch to different destinations.
Apparently restrictions have been made by the British film industry (BFI), that only residents of the UK are allowed to view the film, it's their policy not mine

https://player.bfi.org.uk/free/film...-1962-online
Watch Stowford Paper Mill online - BFI Player
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
There is however a site covering the Ivybridge heritage of the paper mill if you are unable to watch the film, located on the following link > http://ivybridge-heritage.org/archi...aper-making/


To be continued ..........WM
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Edited by Wilding mad - 05/29/2022 12:47 pm

Valued Member
United Kingdom
337 Posts
Posted 05/30/2022   03:59 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Wilding mad to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
The GPO as it was then known had for some years been developing an automatic letter sorting system and started to experiment with some of their stamps using various techniques, much of the work was done at the GPO's development section at the Dollis Hill establishment North West London, early trials were set up with the use of graphite lines being printed on the back of stamps and the use of a letter facing machine known as ALF (automatic letter facer).

I have managed to find some archive footage of a prototype machine that shows how things had developed back in the late 1950s

XPVOM1dPj98


The first graphite lined stamps was introduced in 1957 and printed on paper with the St Edward's crown watermark that comprised of 6 different values d 1d 1d 2d 2d and the 3d, they each had two graphite lines printed on the reverse except for the 2d value with only one.




In 1958 a further set was printed but with a change of watermark having a new design displaying multiple crowns, also additional denominations was produced being the 4d and 4d values.

For various reasons the GPO was not fully satisfied with the results and introduced a green phosphor tagging to the front of the stamps in the form of an 8mm band split between two stamps except for the 2d value that only had 1 thinner band at the left which included graphite lines at the back, these stamps are known as the phosphor graphite issue which was released in 1959.

The graphite lines were eventually dispensed with, and in 1960 stamps with only phosphor tagging on the front was produced in order to process the automatic sorting of mail.

The need for a whiter paper to print the stamps became more apparent as the technology improved on the automatic sorting system, and after further trials at the Dollis Hill establishment, the GPO announced in 1962 that the current cream type paper used to print their stamps would no longer be produced, and would be replaced by a whiter type version.

The new whiter paper would be supplied and produced from the same Stowford paper mill located in Ivybridge South Devon. WM
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Edited by Wilding mad - 05/30/2022 06:01 am
Valued Member
United Kingdom
337 Posts
Posted 05/31/2022   04:49 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Wilding mad to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
In order to achieve the difference in the paper, the water drawn from the river Erme in future was to be filtered to achieve continuity and quality control, as it was believed that this would reduce the colouration in the water which previously had a tendency to fluctuate especially with heavy rains, this would rectify the slight colour changes that had been currently found in the cream manufactured stamp paper.

An article on the subject was composed by the late professor Austin J Barnes and published in the British philatelic journal in 2020 Vol 58 no.3 on pages 68/69, it can be read as follows >



In total over the years I have discovered that between 1958 to 1967 a total of 5 different base papers have been used to print the multiple crown Wilding stamps, I have made up a list of the different ones that can be found with the use of a long wave ultraviolet light.

Of the five different papers used to print the Wilding stamps that I have found, the first two papers are well-known examples and have been identified and currently listed in the Stanley Gibbons part 3 specialised catalogue, here are the five variations which I think are in chronological order in respect as to when they were produced either by error or design.

(1) The original cream type paper which was produced up to 1962 was replaced after a statement made by the GPO of that year, this is listed as a paper variety in various GB specialised catalogues.

(2) A whiter paper variety that replaced the original creams, supposedly created to enhance the capabilities of the ALF system, this paper was supposably made by filtering the water which was drawn from the local river, this paper is also listed in specialised catalogues.

(3) A paper that appears to be encrusted with fluorescent fibres/particles in its embodiment as seen on various denominations, especially of the 9mm violet phosphor definitives printed on a whiter paper, caused by the use of rags containing high amounts of stilbene dyes used in the production of various washing detergents, this type of contamination was first seen around 1964 and gradually increased as time went by, many values have been affected including some commemoratives, add to the fact that there could have been a possible change of rag supplier around that time.

(4) A cream type paper similar to the original 1962 creams but of a more translucent nature discovered on much later printings, this type of paper was in my estimation created by the use of chemical degradation to rid the paper of contamination using substances such as chlorine dioxide or ozone, a method known as oxidation, however, this left a residual paper totally lacking in fluorescence as against the intended whiter paper required.

(5) A fluorescent paper that was created with the additional use of optical brightening agents (OBA's) whilst the paper was still in the pulp stage, used in order to camouflage/mask the offending contaminants, good examples have been found of the 10d 9mm violet phosphors, other values printed on this type of paper are also known but are not as numerous as the contaminated ones that range from the 1d to the 1/6d with a few exceptions.

I will endeavour to show you examples of the three types of paper 3,4 and 5 that are not listed in specialised catalogues , these will cover normal definitives, regionals and some commemoratives to a varying degree.
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Valued Member
United States
169 Posts
Posted 05/31/2022   05:49 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add DStamp to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Fascinating!
I always find it interesting to know why varieties exist, whether or not they are in a catalog.
Obviously most general catalogs cannot include all the reasons for all the varieties but having the information will make identifying them easier.

I am looking forward to your future posts
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Valued Member
United Kingdom
337 Posts
Posted 05/31/2022   06:31 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Wilding mad to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
The problem is that it's not just general catalogues that does not include these paper varieties DStamp.

When checking my stamps I always used to treat the SG specialised part 3 catalogue as gospel, until one day I started to become a disbeliever with regards to some of the things written there, I began to discover stamps that had been printed on papers that were not listed in the catalogue, and the more I looked the more discrepancies became apparent.

One of the major prominences was the contaminated papers #3 in the list which eventually lead to the production of the other 2 unlisted versions #4,#5.

I would also like to add that it is not just me that has noticed these differences . WM
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Valued Member
United Kingdom
337 Posts
Posted 05/31/2022   10:20 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Wilding mad to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
One of the first people to have encountered these contaminated papers, must have been Aubrey Walker, the post offices chief chemist at the Dollis Hill research establishment when he reported his assumptions in 1979 in the Philatelic Bulletin, Vol. 17, p. 46:

Also Hanns Fasching, editor of the Deegam catalogue and member of the Modern British Philatelic Circle mentioned of finding in a 10/- booklet dated February 1968 a 4d 9.5mm phosphor booklet pane containing contaminants in the "Bookmark Journal" back in 2015 along with what he described as finding cream paper specimens on other booklet panes. >


Here is an enlargement of his exhibit that clearly shows various contaminating fluorescent particles in the papers embodiment. >

Of the contaminated papers there are many different values to be found, many of which I have personally encountered and have taken images of them.

More to follow............
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Pillar Of The Community
Canada
5131 Posts
Posted 05/31/2022   11:56 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add lithograving to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Even though GB stamps or paper varieties are anywhere near my
favourite collecting interests I find this thread most interesting.
Looking forward to more of your posts.

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Valued Member
United Kingdom
337 Posts
Posted 05/31/2022   1:25 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Wilding mad to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Here is the sixpenny value showing the same contaminated characteristics being on cylinder 10 dot as seen under longwave ultraviolet light. >

With the same block but filtered into mono in order to enhance the image captured. >

Followed by a strip of 4 with caption. >


you will not find any British Wilding stamps with this variety of paper listed in any specialised catalogue. WM.
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Edited by Wilding mad - 05/31/2022 2:20 pm
Bedrock Of The Community
Australia
36778 Posts
Posted 05/31/2022   4:34 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add rod222 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
Even though GB stamps or paper varieties are anywhere near my
favourite collecting interests


Also a bridge too far for me,
however the way the information is presented is extraordinarily good,
I do read it, and would guess with collectors of a similar bent, the
posts shall be very well received.
Well done.

Our late colleague "Rein", it would have been right down his alley.
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Edited by rod222 - 05/31/2022 4:35 pm
Pillar Of The Community
Canada
5131 Posts
Posted 05/31/2022   5:24 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add lithograving to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Yes Rod, Rein/Galeoptix was certainly an expert when it came to stamp paper.

Like I said before stamp paper is not my cup of tea but as you can see in this previous
thread I had some examples of stamps Rein was discussing therefore I joined in.

http://goscf.com/t/65998&whichpage=3

I really miss Rein's informative posts which were fun to read
and also to participate in.

Wert/Robert is another former member who made this forum interesting
primarily on the Canadian Forum.
It hasn't been the same since he passed.
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Valued Member
United Kingdom
337 Posts
Posted 05/31/2022   11:39 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Wilding mad to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Another learned philatelist/dealer on your side of the pond who has also taken a great interest in the study of stamp papers is Chris McFetridge of St. John, New Brunswick, Canada, with whom I have have had various conversations with concerning stamp papers discovered over the last few years, this is one of his articles concerning information on the subject.

How to Study a Stamp's Paper Brixton Chrome
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
https://brixtonchrome.com/pages/how...stamps-paper

I think you'll find it of use should you be interested.

In order to check out the fluorescence in stamp papers you will need a long wave ultraviolet light in the range of 360nm to obtain the best results.

Many stamp papers in the past have been treated with optical brightening agents in order to be recognised during various automatic sorting processes, either by coating the stamp paper or adding optical brightening agents during the papers production.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Optical_brightener

It has been found that stamps that have been coated have a tendency to be fugitive on becoming moist, as I have found this to be the case when soaking used GB Machin stamps off paper, this can be seen in this next attachment on using a tissue to dry them >

Adding chemicals to stamps is not always a good idea, as this can also affect the environment where the paper is manufactured. WM

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Edited by Wilding mad - 06/01/2022 12:09 am
Valued Member
United Kingdom
337 Posts
Posted 06/01/2022   06:48 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Wilding mad to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Contaminated papers discovered
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
As to when this type of contamination began is a matter of speculation, due to the fact that no records seem to have been kept, on a chronological basis, the earliest findings that I have made are that of the 1964 Forth Road Bridge 3d plain first issued on the 4th of September initially having only small amounts of fluorescent particles within the paper, but as time went by the contamination increased leading to remedial action having to be taken.

One of my earlier discoveries with a more noticeable contamination was that of the 4d Battle of Britain plain issued on the 13th of September 1965, the attachment seen was originally taken under longwave ultraviolet light then filtered into mono as this has a tendency to enhance the anomaly found, therefore I have included both variations. >



More to follow.............
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Valued Member
United Kingdom
337 Posts
Posted 06/02/2022   08:12 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Wilding mad to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I've just been reading through a thread written by Galeoptix and see what you mean with regards to his love of stamp papers.

It's a pity that the images he posted are no longer available to see. WM
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Valued Member
United Kingdom
337 Posts
Posted 06/10/2022   4:53 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Wilding mad to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
After finding the odd stamp printed on paper containing fluorescent fibres, I decided to concentrate more time inspecting other definitive values that had the 9.5 mm violet phosphor, the more I looked, the more I discovered.

Here are several others that I have found during my study of the multiple crown watermarked papers, some of the images also include a relevant caption.

=========== The 1d value =============

=========== The 8d value =============

=========== The 1/- value ============


This type of paper contamination can easily be identified with the use of a longwave ultraviolet lamp as the majority of these stamp papers are pure and without any contaminating fluorescent fibres.

In all my years of collecting I have never seen British stamp papers to be so contaminated before, and can only put it down to lack of quality control. WM
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