English Provincial silver is usually well hallmarked and the maker can be found plus where and when it was made.
York, Newcastle, Exeter (including Plymouth and Bristol)etc are assay offices that have items easy to come across.
Sugar tongs are a particularly easy item to build a pleasing collection of, and at a fairly reasonable price. A nice range of shapes, sizes and styles to choose from.
Scroll down to see some examples of London and provincial hallmarks.
From top to bottom.
Birmingham John Turner a great example of the double duty mark on a caddy spoon
London Alexander Osborne well stamped mark on tea tongs
Newcastle John Brown a scarce makermark on a pair of sugar tongs
London Peter & Jonathan Bateman a rare mark registered Dec1790, Jonathan died Apr 1791)on a Ladle
Example of the Incuse head duty mark Dec 1st 1784-May 1786 on a pair of Hester Bateman tongs
Stuart Devlin modern silversmith mark on a goblet
Paul Storr marks on an Askos jug
Exeter Edward Byne mark seen on tongs, very rare as only 9 pairs are recorded for Exeter assay