British Scout Perfins
Michael S. Strother
Douglas J. Uzakewicz
Rosemary Smith

BSA Perfin
Remember this?

This is a PERFIN.
The question is whose
and when used?

Be honest.  How many of you said this perfin was used by the Boy Scouts of America?  Look at the stamp below.  Now who?

BSA Perfin

The BSA letter perfins in the stamp was used by the Boy Scouts Association, Imperial Headquarters, London, England, until a postage meter was installed in the late 1920's.  The postcard is addressed in Baden-Powell's own handwriting.

Baden-Powell written Postcard
Baden-Powell written Postcard
Collection of Rene Walgrave, Belgium

The next Scout related perfins did not occur until the 1957 Jubilee Jamboree (Ninth World Jamboree).  A set of three stamps [Scott's #334-336, Gibbon's #557-559, Michel's #299-301] was issued to commemorate this event.  They were widely distributed throughout Great Britain and have had perfins applied to them.  A total of eighteen different are currently known to have been used on this set.  Half of these perfin's origins are unknown and there may be others that have not been found as yet.

1957 Jubilee Jamboree Perfins
Perfin Catalogue# Description
B/TH 7180.02 British Thompson Houston Ltd Electrical Engineers & Mfcrs.
B------P not listed Mr. W.O. Hawkins, Slopers, West Worthing, Sussex
CS/Co 6900 user unknown
CSS/CoLd 7280.01 Cunard Steamship Co Ltd, Liverpool
C.W. 8280.01 County Bough of Wallasey
DT 4710.01 user unknown
GE/C 1540.01 General Electric Company 26-30 Lindsy St. Dundee
H not listed user unknown
H & B/Ld 0730.02 Howard Bullough Ltd, Acrington
JK /&S 4720.01 user unknown
J.M./HX 5360.01 John Mackintosh & Son Ltd, Halifax
KB/B not listed user unknown
LCT 1330.01 user unknown
LL not listed user unknown
S.S/C 6490.01 South Shields Corporation
T.B.B. 0370.01 T.B. Brown Ltd, London W.I.
T.C.S./Ld 1110.01 user unknown
TG/Co not listed user unknown
WILLS 4370.01 W.D. & H.O. Wills, Bristol
[GE/C] General Electric Company[GE/C] Reverse
1957 Jubilee Jamboree Perfins
[GE/C] General Electric Company
KB/BKB/B Reverse
1957 Jubilee Jamboree Perfins
[KB/B] Unknown
B---P: Mr. W.O. Hawkins
1957 Jubilee Jamboree Perfins
B---P: Mr. W.O. Hawkins

The most recent discovery of the 1957 WJ perfin use was found in full mint sheets in 1993.  Covers with postal use are also known.  It is now the assessment of several experts that these B---P perfins are genuine issues.  Mr. W. O. Hawkins, Company Secretary at Slopers from 1939 to 1960 had this design as a perforated signature die.  An example of this use ties both a corner of an envelope and the stamps.  It is likely these stamps were perforated as a commemorative item.

UK Scout Perfin Cover

There are no other reported Scout related perfins or any that were applied to Scout or Guide stamps issued in Great Britain.

Special thanks to Mr. A.D. Walter
and the Perfin Society of Great Britain
SOSSI Journal Vol. 26, No. 5, May 1987
SOSSI Journal Vol. 44, No. 5, September/October 1995
SOSSI Journal Vol. 45, No. 1, January/February 1996
SOSSI Journal Vol. 50, No. 6, November/December 2001
Updates by Keith Larson