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How times have changed !

collecting G.B. stamps .

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Neil Barrett 307/06/2021 10:34:41
40 forum posts

It's an interesting calculation Fred - but were these "High Values" in their day?

I can't find a figure for Malta but in 1899 an agricultural labourer in UK might have earned 15/ a week so a 10/ stamp would have been a significant purchase. (Or indeed a very unlikely purchase for the labourer - but still a significant one for a landowner).

If your inflation calculator is using UK equivalent values - is it fair to apply to other Commonwealth nations? 2/ in Barbados versus 2/ in Birmingham in the same year has the same face value but does it have the same buying power? Indeed - your quote tells us there was a significant difference between English wages and Scots or Welsh.

Fred Sellars07/06/2021 11:09:22
632 forum posts
287 photos

With your first point Neil the face value of 10/- for a stamp in 1899 was indeed a high value !

With the rest of the calculations, I have equated all of the others based on sterling at the time in Britain, even though variations may have occurred in a particular countries currency that used £SD. Fred.

Fred Sellars08/06/2021 08:01:43
632 forum posts
287 photos

Here's another stamp for comparison to take into consideration Neil it concerns the Bahamas 1884 6d mauve m/m SG 54.


I recently paid £4 for the pair, the total face value being 1/-, that Victorian face value has a modern-day equivalent of approximately £6-15, but there is another aspect to consider, and that is the current retail price being asked in the market based on comparison with British stamps issued around the same period with the same face value, a single 6d Victorian stamp from the Bahamas cost me £2 to purchase, the British equivalent of the time would be the 6d dull green of 1884, but the asking price for this particular stamp is over £400, here is an example listed by Bill Barrell.


The difference in price is quite astounding when comparing the 2 stamps that have been issued in the same year having the same face value.

As a collector it just doesn't make sense ! What's going on ?

For those that don't already have kates' calculator, they can download it from the site below ↓

UK inflation rates

and calculator


Created by Kate Rose Morley

Have a nice day, Fred

Paul Davey 108/06/2021 10:43:30
514 forum posts
26 photos

One also has to factor in numbers printed / sold / used / remaindered as well as supply and demand. Makes for a difficult comparison!

Fred Sellars08/06/2021 11:25:24
632 forum posts
287 photos

Indeed it does Paul, but from £2 to over £400, the difference is rather staggering ! And as I have already said such a vast difference doesn't make sense.

Here is another one concerning the 1/- value m/m SG 28 for Malta issued at a similar time, I paid £12 for this specimen, what price would a British equivalent be ?


Nevertheless Paul it's certainly food for thought and I think collectors need to be mindful of it. Fred


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