Decimal stamp booklets.

by Ron Shanahan, Queensland

The 35p, 45p and 85p stitched issues.

35p British Coins Series. - Designed by Peter Gauld.

Issued on 12/12/73 and inscribed on the back cover 'Autumn 1973' the cover illustration on this booklet was of a Cuthred 1d 798 - 807. (Fig. 1)

The booklet contained 2 panes of 5 x 3½p two phosphor band stamps on FCP paper with PVA gum, plus one blank label. (Fig. 2)

The second in the series was inscribed April 1974, had the same illustration and was issued on 10/4/74.

Third in the series illustrated an Edward 1 Silver Groat, was inscribed June 1974 and issued on 4/7/74.

The last of the 35p issues was a change of cover to 'Canada Life'. Inscribed September 1974 and issued on 23/10/74. This booklet also saw a change to PVAD gum and one centre phosphor band.

45p British Coins

There was only one design in the 45p Coins series and this was the 'Elizabeth Gold Crown'. It was used for two issues - the September 1974, issued 9/10/74 (Fig. 3)

and December 1974, issued 1/11/74. The latter was also issued on an orange brown cover due to a shortage of the original yellow brown card.

The booklet contained 2 panes of 5 x 4½p, two band phosphor stamps on FCP with PVAD gum, plus a blank label. (Fig. 4 shows a pane with the sheet serial number in the selvedge)

85p Canada Life.

The September 1974 issue was released on 13/11/74 and had the 'Canada Life' cover. The stamp content was three panes of 5 x 4½p two band phosphor plus blank label and one pane of 3½p one centre band plus blank label.

All were on FCP with PVAD gum.

There was only the one edition released although a December 1974 issue was prepared and then cancelled. However advertisers' voucher copies were distributed.

Numbers issued.

35p - Autumn 4,700,260, April 2,611,560, June 1,395,400 and September 3,017,020.

45p - September 2,936,520, December 3,486,220.

85p - September 1,918,355.




3½p 2 band - APPL, PL. 3½p 1 band - IL, La.

4½p - IL, ILa, IL(½v) La(½v)



The 35p pane has its share of 'scratches' and 'patches' but one worth looking for is the 'extra pearl in necklace and 3 white spots above' which is on R 1/1.

The 45p pane also has 'extra pearls on necklace' R 1/2 but should you come across a 'cream-tinted phosphor' variant it is catalogued at £75 on the IL perforation or £400 on the ILa perforation. Even better would be the missing phosphor, known on the IL perforator with a £600 catalogue tag.

Variations in make up.

35p. Coins. All three coins series booklets are known with

a. First pane dextrin.

b. Second pane dextrin.

c. Both panes dextrin.

35p. Canada Life. This pane is known with:-

a. First pane miscut.

b. Second pane miscut.

c. Both panes miscut.

This 'miscut' variant puts the label at the top of the pane. (See illustration below)

85p Canada Life 'AVC'

Mike Holt - email lists this as follows:-

Dec 74* Green 'AVC' (no stamps) Average perfs £35

*This advertiser voucher copy (AVC) was prepared, but not issued. It contains no stamps - but it is of special interest to collectors because of the unissued green colour and Dec 74 date.

3½p miscut pane.

Note regarding the 4½p Steel Blue.

First issued in sheet format in October 1973, and booklet format in October 1974 in the 45p booklet, this value was included in the 85p booklet and issued in the QS sideways coil. The cylinder B7 ( Fig. 5) used for the booklet printings contained two types in equal proportions, the first, the same as sheets and coils came from columns 2 and 4, whilst the second from columns 1 and 3 only.

In type 1, the value '4½p' is placed .5mm farther left than in type 2. In type 1, there is a space between the foot of the fractional '2' and the Queen's bust, whereas in type 2, the serif of the fractional '2' appears to touch the bust. (Fig. 6)

The final article in this series will deal with the 50p stitched booklets.

Source acknowledgments:-
British Philatelic Bulletin.
Stanley Gibbons Great Britain Volume 4.
Mike Holt Price List No. 25.

This article was first published in 'Machinations' the Machin interest newsletter of the Canberra Philatelic Society.

Copyright EARS Leisurewrite 1999.

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