Wednesday, 19 July 2017

1045. 🇵🇳 Pitcairn Issues Marine Life Sheetlet.

  🇬🇸 Bounty Post, the postal service of Pitcairn Islands, will issue an excellent sheetlet of 8 different stamps on 26 July 2017 on the subject of the Pitcairn Islands Marine Reserve. The stamps were designed by Denise Durkin and lithographed by Southern Colour Print and perforated 13 x 13.5. Rating:- *****.

  🇬🇬 Guernsey Post will issue a set of 10 self-adhesive stamps on 1 September 2017 on the subject of Coastal scenes. The designs are said to have been inspired by  "the fashionable posters of the 1940s" and are by Sue Harmon. Rating:- **.

  🇯🇪 Jersey Post issued a "Commemorative sheet" containing 20 x Jersey Arms Local Letter rate greetings stamps with attached labels on 17 July 2017 to commemorate the Jersey golfer, Harry Vardon. Price:- £12.70p! Rating:- 0.

1044. 🇲🇾🇵🇬 Malaysian Trains And Papua New Guinea Make Up Values.

  🇲🇾 Pos Malaysia issued 2 se-tenant pairs of stamps on 17 July to commemorate the opening of the second phase of the Sungai Buloh Kajang MRT line. This is an interesting and well designed set. Rating:- ****.

  🇨🇾 Cyprus Post issued a single stamp on 10 July as part of its contribution to the Euromed omnibus series. The stamp featured a depiction of a tree to fit in with this year's theme which is "Trees of the Mediterranean". Rating:- **.

  🇧🇩 Bangladesh Post issued a single stamp on 30 January 2017 to commemorate International Customs Day. The stamp was designed by Md. Hafizur Rahman and lithographed by Security Printers Gazipur. The theme of the stamp is "Data analysis for effective border management" - not really a subject to set a stamp collector's imagination on fire. Rating:- **.

  🇵🇬 Nigel Haworth is currently offering for sale 10 different stamps from the Papua New Guinea 5t and 20t make up rate series (See Blog 791). The stamps being sold are depicted below - according to listing of these issues by Steven Zirinsky, the first of these issues were released on 6 January 2015 and took the form of 6 stamps issued in sheets of 20 with no attached labels.these are quire rare, only 2500 of each being produced. These stamps were longer than they were broad and featured the following designs:- Tokua Airport, Hiri Hanenamo, Aroma students, Red hibiscus, Huli dancers and Traditional dancers. They all had a 5t value.

  Six further 5t stamps were produced in a more square-shaped design and sold from January - February 2015 onwards. These also had no attached labels but were sold in sheets of 40 in editions of 2000 to 2500. The designs depicted Tokua Airport, Red hibiscus, Hiri hanenamo, Birdwing butterfly, Aroma students and Hiri lagatoi. At that time the stamps were also produced in sheets of 20 x 5t with 20 attached labels in the Hiri Hanenamo (with and without italics) and Birdwing butterfly designs.
  Stamps will a face value of 20t were also produced - a design depicting Ahus dancers (with an earliest known date of use of 3 March 2015 according to Steven Zirinsky) and one depicting Moroni dancers (earliest known date of use being 19 January 2016).
  Steven Zirinsky then records a 5t stamp, issued in sheets of 40, which depicts a Blue and gold Macaw dating from January 2016 and a 20t stamp depicting the PNG national parliament building- also issued in sheets of 40 - with an earliest known date of use of 7 January 2016.
  It appears that so far no stamps have been issued by Papua New Guinea Post during 2017 although a set, said to have been issued on 28 June 2017, has been released by IGPC in the name of Papua New Guinea on the subject of the 20th anniversary of the death of Diana, Princess of Wales. But the issues of Papua New Guines have in recent years been extremely interesting (though some of the provisional issues are excruciatingly expensive) and provide an exciting challenge to track them down. Many of the provisionals are affordable and an enjoyable collection of modern Papua New Guinea stamps can be put together.

Monday, 17 July 2017

1043. 🇮🇪 Busy Philatelic Summer Ahead For Ireland.

  🇮🇪 In addition to the single stamp mentioned in Blog 1042 which commemorated the Women's Rugby World Cup being held in Ireland later this summer, An Post, has revealed the other stamps it plans to issue during a busy Irish philatelic summer.
  Four stamps in a se-tenant block and 1 miniature sheet will depict Irish railway stations.  Those shown on the stamps are Heuston Station in Dublin, Clarke Station at Dundalk, Ment Station in Cork and Bagenalstown station. The issue was designed by WorkGroup and lithographed by Cartor and perforated 13.5. Rating:- *****.

  A single stamp will be issued on 27 July 2017 to commemorate the Centenary of the death of the Irish First World War poet, Francis Ledwidge. The stamp was designed by Detail and lithographed by Cartor and perforated 14 x 14.5. Rating:- ***.
  Collectors of "Birds on stamps" will like this stamp because it includes the depiction of a blackbird in its design because Ledwidge, killed at the Third Battle of Ypres, was known as " The poet of the Blackbird".

  A single stamp will be released on 10 August 2017 to commemorate the Centenary of the birth of John Mary "Jack" Lynch, a former Irish prime minister. The stamp was designed by Vermillion Design and lithographed by Cartor and perforated 14 x 14.5. Rating:- ***.

  Another single stamp will be issued on 7 September 2017 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of free secondary education in Ireland. The issue was designed by Ger Garland from a photograph by Alan Betson and lithographed by Cartor and perforated 13.5. Rating:- **.

  On 14 September 2017 two stamps and 1 miniature sheet will be released to commemorate the National Ploughing Championships. The attractive issue was designed by Ger Garland and lithographed by Cartor and perforated 13.5. Rating:- ****.

  Finally 4 stamps will be issued on 21 September 2017 on the subject of "Urban Street Art". This vaguely interesting issue follows on from a similar set issued earlier this year by Australia Post. The issue was designed by Aad and lithographed by Cartor and perforated 14 x 14.5. Rating:- ****.

  🇱🇰 Sri Lanka Post issued a pair of stamps on 13 July 2017 to commemorate the 150th anniversary of Ceylon Tea. The issue was designed by DG Sudath Jayawardena and printed in lithography. Rating:- ***.

Saturday, 15 July 2017

1042. 🇬🇧 Local Stamps In Demand.

  🇬🇧 I went to the Pinfold Street post office in Birmingham city centre the day after the release of Royal Mail's new "Landmark buildings" set to obtain the 10 stamps for my collection and I thought them to be attractive and interesting items. Naturally I was particularly interested in the depiction of Birmingham's own new central Library building which is situated just a few hundred yards away from Pinfold Street post office and thought it would be a good idea to buy a few extra examples of that particular stamp for when I write letters to friends elsewhere so that they could see what the building looked like. Someone else had had the same idea and I found that large numbers of the Birmingham Library stamps had been torn out of the se-tenant strips and indeed there were only a few complete strips remaining at the counter for anyone wanting to buy the complete set. These individual stamps had obviously gone down very well with local buyers many of whom surely must have been ordinary mail senders rather than stamp collectors who would presumably have wanted to buy complete sets.
  I have long felt that stamps with local subjects featured on them would sell well in the areas of the country to which they are relevant both to residents of the area who would enjoy seeing sites and subjects they recognise appearing on the stamps they use and to visitors and tourists in the area who want a souvenir of the place they are visiting. They would be pictorial local definitives which doubtless would be unpopular with stamp collectors since the idea may open the door to numerous new issues as occurs in Japan but with a little restraint on the part of Royal Mail such stamps could highlight the various cities, towns and countryside around Britain and mean that visitors could always buy souvenir philatelic items to remember their trip to various places in the United Kingdom.
  I often visit other parts of Britain myself and usually wish that I could have bought a souvenir philatelic item relevant to the place I visited. Royal Mail could start off by reissuing the 2016 Bridges set and this year's Windmills and Landmark Buildings sets in sheets containing a single design rather than in se-tenant format and then selling the sheets in the regions where the design is most relevant.
  Of course some places already have local stamps - the Post and Go stamps sold at various visitor destinations such as museums and the Stratford upon Avon Shakespeare Birthplace Trust gift shop. I am often in the Stratford gift shop and am always disappointed to see that despite the numerous visitors there from home and abroad, there is no real interest in buying the special stamps from the Post and Go kiosk. The kiosk is not really highlighted and I suspect most visitors there don't notice it 
or do not know what it is.
  The dispensed stamps themselves are not really all that interesting and have little or nothing to do with Shakespeare - we have Machin Head stamps, Union Jack stamps and Flowers stamps. One of the flowers depicted in the strip is a thistle which has no connection with Shakespeare unless you start stretching the point and link it with his play Macbeth..

  Of more relevance would be a resurrection of the previously issued Swan Post and Go stamp which alludes to Shakespeare's sobriquet as "The Swan Of Avon" and also to the numerous swans - disagreeable and aggressive if physically attractive - swimming on the Avon next to the Royal Shakespeare Company theatre.

  I do wish that Royal Mail would come up with a new approach to its Post and Go stamps. Here is a real opportunity to make designs relevant to the place where they are being sold. It doesn't have to cost them a lot but I'm sure such stamps would sell well. They could even use classic old designs which means they wouldn't have to pay a designer to produce new stuff (though I suppose there might be royalties to pay to the original designer). Such items take just a few seconds to design on a computer - thus below we have some of my suggestions for Post and Go stamps to be dispensed in Stratford - 

  Designs which use David Gentleman's ckassic and brilliant 1964 designs which cmmemorated the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare's birth or the 2/6d value from the same set in which Hamlet holds Yorick's skull or designs from the 2011 RSC 50th anniversary set which depict famous British actors in such roles as Hamlet (David Tennant) or King Lear (Paul Schofield). I really believe these could sell well in Stratford if only the people at Royal Mail could use a bit of imagination when deciding what the Post and Go stamps should look like.

  Just to show that this is not all about Shakespeare here's a design for the Bicentenary of HMS Trincomalee issue which actually depicts the ship rather than some overused Royal Navy logo.

  🇮🇪 An Post, the postal service of Ireland, issued a single stamp on 13 July 2017 to commemorate the Women's Rugby World Cup to be held in Ireland from 9 to 26 August 2017. The issue was designed by Zinc Design Consultants and lithographed by Cartor and perforated 13.5. Rating:- ***.