SG43/44 Penny Red Plates Index
The penny red plates with letters in all four corners (SG 43/44) are a source of fascination for many GB philatelists and stamp collectors. First issued in 1864, they remain relatively inexpensive compared to other early victorian stamp issues. A complete used set of this issue has only one particularly expensive stamp to afford which is plate 225, rare due to its short production life. Of course this excludes plate 77 which, although a few examples made it in to circulation, was never officially issued.
The quality of stamp printing had progressed significantly since the earliest QV issues but collectors can still find numerous varieties. Many constant varieties can be seen on stamps produced throughout the entire life of many plates whereas many non-constant varieties evidence the changes to plates as they became damaged, worn and repaired.
Because the Penny Red plates are relatively inexpensive, many collectors strive to reconstruct complete sheets produced on various plates. The use of the corner letters to indicate the position a stamp occupied in the sheet makes this a straightforward task to do if you can acquire the stamps.
Below is an index to the web pages we've created displaying examples of stamps from every plate (excluding plate 77) to help collectors fill the missing gaps in their collections or find those elusive corner letters to build a plate reconstruction.