Geographical Directory of British Weights and Scales


This Geographical Directory contains information about the localities that had jurisdiction over  Weights and Measures, together with the marks stamped by their Inspectors. There is also information about the trade in scales and weights.

The Directory is intended to cover the period from the introduction of the British 'Imperial Standards' in 1825/6 to the major reorganisation of local government in1974.  Events which occurred before and after these dates are mentioned when they help to complete the picture.  

The material is arranged according to the pre-1974 administrative counties.  For each county the information is set out in 'notebook' form, in three sections. 

  • Section A (blue borders) covers the inspection of weights and measures by the county authorities.
  • Section B (red borders) covers those local authorities within the county that had separate jurisdiction over weights and measures.
  • Section C (green borders) covers the trade in scales and weights in the county.

There are two primary sources.  The artefactual evidence is based on weights that display local verification marks and, occasionally, the marks of 'makers'.  This evidence is supplemented by   documentary evidence provided by  published sources such as newspapers and directories, and unpublished records such as the minutes of Quarter Sessions. 


The Directory is a Work in Progress, and contributions are very welcome.    All information is helpful, whether it is an isolated fact or an account of events in a porticular locality.  Please send me an email:

Further details of the project and the methodology will appear here in due course.  The information currently available can be downloaded from the links below.  You may wish to begin by looking at some of the artefacts in the following slide-show.  


English & Welsh Counties (Lancashire)

                  For convenience, the information for Lancashire is presented in six files, corresponding to the six ancient hundreds of the county: Amounderness, Blackburn, Leyland, Lonsdale, Salford, and West Derby.   Some files are still in preparation.

English & Welsh Counties (London and Middlesex)

Files coming soon.

English & Welsh Counties (Yorkshire)

The City of York is included with the North Riding.