Smoke and ire . . .

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From our 18th Dec newsletter. . . 

Stamps have been in the news this week for all sorts of reasons.

A post office in Durham, England, reckoned they had run out of 2nd Class stamps and blamed a national shortage, but the Royal Mail said there was no shortage, the shop in question had simply not ordered enough.

However, it was soon followed by a couple of letters in the Daily Telegraph (does anyone read that any more?)  in which  the writers claimed their local post office had run short as well.

In America their equivalent of Smiler stamps are Custom postage stamps but it is the same idea, you can design a stamp of your own.

But was does the US of A allow on stamps? Well from May 15 next year, you can only depict something which is, in their words, ‘suitable for all ages’ but guns, alcohol and tobacco are allowed.

However, you can’t depict cannabis even when it is legal in your state or show it being used for medical purposes.

Perhaps even more ironic is that the one of the people the US Post Office is honouring with a stamp next year is John Lennon (left) who was no stranger to various things Benson and Hedges never sold. . .




Rock on Christmas

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from our newsletter

If anyone could be bothered enough to ask us what our favourite Christmas stamp was it would be something which mixed the traditional with the modern.

The one illustrated here – the GB one from 2015 – fits the bill perfectly showing, as it does, Mary on keyboard and Joseph on vocals . . .




Be a telegram man

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Our Paul has been away on holiday this week so Barry has been in charge of the shop and had an endless stream of customers, buying things, leaving items for our next auction, making enquires and others who just come in for a chat.

All are welcome; especially those who leave with less money in their pockets than they came in with. . .

We have also managed to load another 150 items onto the website, mainly Commonwealth. As we mentioned last Continue reading Be a telegram man

Airmail that failed to fly

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NEW on the website are several examples of what are known as the Wayzata Airmail of Newfoundland.

This ‘stamp’ has a fascinating history. It is not listed by Gibbons but is mentioned in the Scott’s catalogues.

 In 1932 a company, Arial World Airways, persuaded the Newfoundland government to issue a stamp to finance the purchase of a plane which was to fly Continue reading Airmail that failed to fly

Che still causes controversy

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As you may have read in the news, the Irish Department of Communications is in trouble with some for issuing a stamp marking the 50th anniversary of the death of Che Guevara.

The stamp, pictured here, features the iconic image of the Argentine-born revolutionary by Dublin artist Jim Fitzpatrick.

Some would say that Guevara a mass murderer who should not be honoured, to others Continue reading Che still causes controversy

Not coining it in . . .

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We mentioned on a newsletter how various ‘alternative’ investments have fared over the years.

A coin dealer got in touch with some values of commemorative coins.

It was a bit of shock, but here we go:

In 1990 the Royal Mint sold a £5 cupronickel coin to celebrate the Queen Mother’s 90th birthday. They sold it to Joe Public for £9.99 but a dealer will give you just Continue reading Not coining it in . . .

Star Wars junk costs the earth

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WHEN we were kids there weren’t that many new stamps you couldn’t buy after saving up your pocket money.

The going rate for a commemorative set was about three shillings (that’s 15p) – sometimes a bit more, often less. But how much would you need now?

On 12 October the new Star Wars stamps come out. The basic stamps, eight of them, cost Continue reading Star Wars junk costs the earth