Andrew Upton, on 04 June 2012 - 12:59 AM, said:
Curiously, whenever I have heard this "myth" previously it is normally said that the broad H is the sign of a plaque to an Army casualty, and the narrow H to a Naval casualty. Unique named plaques exist that break this rule however, so a plaque to a relatively common name couldn't say be identified with absolute certainty to the one Naval casualty in the list simply on the strength of it having a narrow H. As Deopar has already hinted at, the difference exists because moulds were originally made for womens plaques, which naturally used "She" rather than "He". As there was not enough room to simply add an S to the original design as-is, the letter H was reduced in width to give the necessary additional space. When they had finished doing the womens plaques the S was removed from the moulds so they could be reused in manufacturing mens plaques. Waste not want not...
This made me look at some of the plaques in my collection and you are absolutely correct, all the Army plaques which I have looked at in my collection are broad 'H' and the two Naval casualties(Sub Lt Royal Naval Air Service and Captain RMLI, to be precise) which I have with plaques, both have the narrow 'H'.
I know that in my early days of collecting there was a lot of talk about the broad and narrow 'H', and also numbers inside and outside the leg--but to be quite honest I just thought that it was all rather uninteresting and unimportant and I never really took a lot of notice, and after reading your comments I rather think that I may have been correct--as there is obviously no hard and fast rule!!