© 2013 A Beer Glass Collector

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As you can see from all the pictures, the design of the stamps varied from inspector to inspector until total standardisation arrived in 1964 when the stamp became simply crown plus number. For the first time in nearly 300 years the monarch’s title disappeared and now the crown has gone too.

Your handy guide to verification stamps:

Inspector’s # 490 Bristol City

Inspector’s # 19 Derbyshire

1879-1901 Victoria

1901-1910 Edward 7th

1910-1952 George 5th & 6th  

1953-1964 Elizabeth 2nd  




VR+ crown designs + number

ER+ crown designs + number

GR+ crown designs + number (no distinction)

EIIR + crown + number

Crown + year + number

Crown + number

Number+ year

The first attempt to verify the contents of drinking vessels with a stamp was from 1699 onwards. Before 1824 there were regional variations on what constituted a pint but the imperial pint of 20 fluid ounces became the standard from 1824. Pint, half pint or quarter pint (gill) tankards had to be filled with a measured amount of water by the Weights and Measures Inspectorate and verified with a stamp.

In January 1879 the Board of Trade issued a circular to all Borough and County authorities urging them to adopt a uniform design of verification stamp”…with only variation of number or mark…as shall be sufficient to distinguish each Inspector’s district.”

In 1907 the regulations specified that a verification mark must

 “…be etched or sandblasted beneath or near the denomination outside the measure.”

It is with great thanks to Phil (tidyphil@hotmail.com) who has found that the Verification site has moved.

To see the complete archive of Inspector’s numbers with Crown prior to 2006 click: Beer Stamps

King Edward VII Pottery Mug

Queen Victoria Quart Jug