GB Historic Scotland Scottish Archeology Stamp Design Error
I just published an article on our ‘Everything Scotland‘ blog about the Ring of Brodgar design error.
Below is an excerpt:
I was tidying up some philatelic files and came across this beautiful booklet of ten (10) postage stamps depicting Scottish archeological sites, issued by Great Britain, for exclusive sale by Historic Scotland.
I don’t remember at which property I bought same as there are over 300 properties in the care of Historic Scotland and I have visited so many since 2006 when I first landed on Scottish soil.
This booklet consist of five stamps depicting Orkney’s archeology and five other featuring the Scottish flag.
- 1. Skara Brae Village
2. Maes Howe
3. Orkney Venus
4. Ring of Brodgar
5. Broch of Gurness
Upon googling about this series of postage stamps, I came across a forum entry stating:
In 2011, a booklet was issued in GB for sale by Historic Scotland. The fourth stamp shows the Ring of Brodgar on Orkney. Except it doesn’t. These are the Calanais (Callanish) Stones, located on Lewis, a mere 230 miles away! How can these errors get past the first approval process?
An unknown stamp design error ? I had not noticed…what a pleasant surprise! 🙂
Design errors on postage stamps are often caught during the distribution process, when large numbers of postal workers are scrutinizing the new stamp; although officials may elect to withdraw all the stamps at that point, it is very difficult to retrieve every one of them, and in these instances a few may end up being sold and used. The exact circumstance are important, because once the stamp is sold to a customer, whether or not against the postal service’s rules, it is considered to be legitimate.
The Callanish Stones on the Isle of Lewis are an arrangement of standing stones placed in a cruciform pattern with a central stone circle. They were erected in the late Neolithic era, and were a focus for ritual activity during the Bronze Age.
THE RING OF BRODGAR
As you can see, the image below does not reflect the picture on the booklet postage stamp. The distance between the standing stones is much wider.
Whether or not the Brodgar stones were used to measure the passage of time, the area in which the circle is located is ideal for the purpose. Using landmarks such as notches between the surrounding hills, it is very easy to chart the seasons from the positions of the rising and setting sun throughout the year.
If you have any additional information about this stamp design error, kindly leave a comment below.
Until next, stay safe and strong.
ATA & APS Member (1991- )
Former Stamp Business Dealer