March 21, 2017

70g to Kazakhstan. Not signed for.

You know stamp collecting is getting expensive even for the day-to-day issues! Today, you'd have to fork out £19.24 to get the new Machin issues and the eight new Regionals. And another 45p for the Philatelic Bureau (which is pretty good value and a lot less than the petrol in running around trying to find a Post Office with any of these!)

Five more values that will make you smile or grimace in years to come when you may be showing your collection to someone and they ask 'Why did they have a special stamp for £1.57?' You may try to suggest that it was the second class rate for 70g to Kazahkstan. Not signed for.

As well as the codes M17L and their all being self-adhesive, I should also mention that two are prime numbers if you ignore the decimal.




We also get two new Regionals for each nation in the £1.17 and £1.40 denominations. Regions don't get self adhesives - people living there have to lick these. You'll see that the fonts for the value tablets have now been standardised and look very similar to the national font, I had often wondered, including out loud here from time to time, why on Earth each region had their own font.





The designs and colours look very much as they have done since 1999 with a small change in 2003 to give us the white borders. It is strange to think that the first time we saw the Scottish 'tartan' design, for instance, was as a 64p stamp!

This series has now lasted longer than many others have done and whilst it isn't about to break any records it is non the less a lot longer than ever I would have imagined. The designs really did not seem to have any particular longevity about them but, along with flags, lions, dragons, leeks, hexagonal basalt and green fields they have indeed lasted.

March 14, 2017

202 Decimal Machins

I have been asked to give a talk about Machins next week so have been putting together some display items. Along the way I created these A4 sheets illustrating the different decimal values issued. The audience are not at all expert so a simple set of different colours and value styles will suffice. I know that there could have been many more pages! I hope I haven't missed anything important. (The heading is wrong but I can't crop images in this software. It should have been 1971-17 and, of course, there'll be plenty more to come.)

Anyway, having gone to all the trouble of creating them I thought someone out there might appreciate the sheets which I have included here.

March 09, 2017

New Horizon labels

I hadn't been paying much attention to the labels on most parcels that I get nowadays. In place of the gold labels the white ones have been a familiar sight now for some time. Then I noticed another, much cleaner variety, for which I have now had a couple of examples.

These are much easier to read and the label is slightly smaller, 55mm x 60mm instead of 59mm x 65mm. The 'postmark' graphic reminding us that it is a single use only label has gone and the space used for an extended address reference, now including the start of the street name and there is a new code running vertically in the bottom right corner.

Below are some examples of the various labels I have received in the older format.


The shades do seem to vary quite a lot, from an almost colourless grey through grey-green to a distinctly brown flavour. They may not have the charm of Machins but are quite interesting none the less. And they don't require me to examine my bank balance every month!

March 01, 2017

£sd issues

With the 50th Anniversary of the first Machins issued coming up on 5 June 2017 I thought I had better add the basic list of £sd values to my catalogue.

RefValueColourPhosphorPrinterPerfGumIssueSG/BPB No.
D 00.51/2dorange-brown2H15 x 14pva05/02/68723
D 01.11dlight olive2H15 x 14pva05/02/68724
D 01.21dyellowish oliveCH15 x 14pva16/09/68725
D 01.31dyellowish oliveCH15 x 14ga27/08/69725Eg
D 02.12dlake brown type i2H15 x 14pva05/02/68726
D 02.22dlake brown type ii2H15 x 14pva01/01/69727
D 02.32dlake brown type iiCH15 x 14ga27/08/69728
D 03.13dvioletCH15 x 14ga08/08/67729
D 03.23dvioletCH15 x 14pva12/03/68729Ev
D 03.33dviolet2H15 x 14pva06/04/68730
D 04.14ddeep sepia2H15 x 14ga05/06/67731
D 04.24ddeep olive brown2H15 x 14ga731Ea
D 04.34ddeep sepia2H15 x 14pva22/01/68731Ev
D 04.44ddeep olive brownCH15 x 14pva16/09/68732
D 04.54dvermillionCH15 x 14pva06/01/69733
D 04.64dvermillionCH15 x 14ga27/08/69733Eg
D 04.74dvermillionLH15 x 14pva06/01/69734
D 04.84dvermillionRH15 x 14pva01/12/69734Eb
D 05.15dRoyal blue2H15 x 14pva01/07/68735
D 05.25ddeep blue2H15 x 14pva735Ee
D 06.16dbright reddish purple2H15 x 14pva05/02/68736
D 06.26dbright magenta2H15 x 14pva736Ea
D 06.36dclaret2H15 x 14pva736Eb
D 07.17dbright emerald2H15 x 14pva01/07/68737
D 08.18dvermillion2H15 x 14pva01/07/68738
D 08.28dlight turquoise2H15 x 14pva06/01/69739
D 09.19dmyrtle green2H15 x 14ga08/08/67740
D 09.29dmyrtle green2H15 x 14pva29/11/68740Ev
D 1010ddrab2H15 x 14pva01/07/68741
D 12.11/-light bluish violet2H15 x 14ga05/06/67742
D 12.21/-pale bluish violet2H15 x 14ga742Ea
D 12.31/-pale bluish violet2H15 x 14pva26/04/68742Ev
D 18.11/6dgreenish blue and deep blue2H15 x 14ga08/08/67743
D 18.21/6ddeep blue2H15 x 14ga743a
D 18.31/6dgreenish blue and deep blue2H15 x 14pva28/08/68743Ev
D 18.41/6dPrussian blue and indigo2H15 x 14pva743Evb
D 18.51/6dPrussian blue and indigoPCPH16 x 14pva743c
D 21.11/9ddull orange and black2H15 x 14ga05/06/67744
D 21.21/9dbright orange and black2H15 x 14ga744Ea
D 21.31/9dbright orange and black2H15 x 14pva16/11/70744Ev

Now I need to check that I do actually have them all! It was a long time ago when I put these in their album.