If you've studied Machins closely it's more than likely that you have seen a forgery at some time, whether it was the old 24p brown with it's jumbo perforations or one of the new 'security' stamps with pointy perforation teeth. I've shown a few here before.
This week I was shown a booklet of 1st x 12 red with interesting non-phosphor bands (you'll recall that imitation bands are simply some sort of varnish). This booklet had a selection of oddities: no 'phosphor', side-band right, interrupted band (with a 1mm vertical gap), similar 1.5mm vertical band only, ending (if I recall correctly) with another non-phosphor at the right. I suspect it was accidental: I can't imagine that the forgers (who are producing these for postal use) would deliberately create a selection of errors that a collector might spot and highlight - that would only draw attention to the forgery when the lack of any phosphor was noticed, let alone any other give-away features.
But how about this one, bought by a reader on eBay, along with some other on-paper oddities from kiloware?
But the real question is why they bothered with a £1 stamp at all. Most users won't know that the coding (if they realise it is there at all) means that this should be a booklet stamp, but how are the stamps distributed? One of the main outlets for all stamps is corner shops, small shopkeepers selling 1st & 2nd class stamps either in books or cut out and sold singly. eBay is another outlet - I saw 20 forged books of 12 (£153.60) sold for £100 (ebay item 152119322249 while it's still visible).
So where do you outlet stamps which aren't used for basic postage rates, and for which no actual postage rates exist? The £1 is a make-up stamp now.
Has anybody else seen forgeries other than 1st & 2nd class?
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