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British Machin Stamp Anniversary of the Penny Black Machin 1st class large British Stamp GB Worldwide up to 40g Machin Stamp

Special offers on new & used copies of: Collecting British Squared Circle Postmarks

Collecting Stamps: The 1924/25 Empire Exhibition Stamps

GB Stamps for the 1924 and 1925 British Empire Exhibition at Wembley The British Empire Exhibition, held at Wembley in Middlesex close to London during 1924 & 1925, was officially opened by King George V on 23rd April 1924. At the time the British Empire consisted of 58 countries and only Gibraltar and Gambia were not represented. At a cost at the time of £12 million this was the largest ever exhibition staged anywhere in the world and over 27 million visitors attended while it was open.

Stamps commemorating the exhibition were issued for both 1924 and 1925. The stamps all featured similar designs to that shown here. The penny value was red and penny halfpenny value brown. The first day of issue for the 1924 stamps was 23 April 1924 - the day King George V opened the exhibition - and the 1925 printing was issued on 9 May 1925. Apart from envelopes posted by visitors many different letter cards, postcards and souvenirs were produced commemorating the exhibition. Collectors today tend to refer to the stamp sets as being either the "1924 Wembley" or "1925 Wembley" commemorative issues.
Around 25 different special postmarks, many featuring the lion logo, were used during the exhibition in both years. The most commonly seen examples are those used on regular mail. The parcel handstamps, registered marks and specific exhibitor postal markings can be very scarce.

First Day Covers for the stamps are very collectable and, depending on condition and postmarks, prices can easily exceed a £1,000 for the most desirable. The 1925 stamps on FDC are very much more valuable than the 1924 issue as many collectors at the time did not recognise the new 1925 stamp as a proper new issue meaning far fewer were serviced with FDI postmarks.

Collectors should note that the stamps were only sold at the exhibition which means examples bearing first day of issue postmarks from other parts of the UK away from the exhibition (or London) are extremely rare. A number of forgeries bearing Rhyl postmarks on the 1924 issue turned up in the 1970s so excercise caution.

Several postal stationery items - including pre-paid postcards, envelopes and letter cards - were produced for both years of the exhibition. While First Day of use cards are very collectable, the 1925 stationery items are far more valuable than the 1924.

The stamps for both years were recess printed by Waterlow & Sons. In 1924 the stamps were normally line or comb perforated whereas only comb perforated examples are found for the 1925 stamps.

New GB postage stamps still influenced by Arnold Machin


Arnold Machin Centenary Stamps

Years after his passing in 1999, Arnold Machin is still making a huge impact on British stamp design. Perhaps the most interesting use of his iconic Queen's head design is on the latest Post and Go stamps which many collectors believe will prove to be the start of a new generation of postage stamps where services and values are overprinted at the point of sale on pre-printed stamp designs.

It therefore seems fitting that the centenary of Arnold Machin's birth was the subject of Britain's first ever commemorative Post & Go stamps.






Printing The London 2012 Olympics Definitive Stamps




Squared Circle Postmarks


Did You Know?

Did you know:  Traditional philately covers the study of all technical aspects of postage stamp production and identification. This includes the initial stamp designs, the paper stamps are printed on and any watermarks, printing methods, the perforations, any overprints, the gum applied and even studying philatelic fakes and forgeries.

Recent British Stamps & Philately Articles



Stamp & Cover Sellers Face New Rules On eBay Picture Standards
Love it or loathe it, and despite the constant complaints we hear about excessive fees and rogue buyers repeatedly claiming not to receive items which have not been sent by tracked postal services, there's no denying eBay manages to stay the busiest online venue for UK internet stamp auctions. Stamp dealers and stamp collectors using the eBay marketplace should note that new rules governing the standards of images come in to force on 8th November (delayed from October 30th). [...]

SG to Stamp on eBay? Stanley Gibbons Acquires BidStart
Britain's best known stamp dealers, Stanley Gibbons, have reportedly stumped up $1 Million to acquire the US trading platform BidStart.com which operates a person to person collectables trading website similar to eBay but focused on stamps and postcards. [...]

BPMA Announce New Home Plans for The British Postal Museum & Archive
Plans for a new home for The British Postal Museum & Archive (BPMA) were announced today by the BPMA, Royal Mail Group and the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills. [...]

Bletchley Park Are Putting Their Stamp on the Alan Turing Centenary Year
Four special First Day Covers are being released by Bletchley Park on 23rd February 2012 marking the birth centenary year of Alan Turing, the mathematician, wartime code-breaker and visionary pioneer of modern computer science. [...]

Reports About The Death of Philately are Somewhat Premature
An interesting article has been published by FT Adviser.com which investigates why returns from traditional assets, such as equities and property, continue to fall, while the appeal of collectables like wine, coins, stamps and artwork keeps growing. [...]

Competition - Win a Free Royal Mail A-Z British Landmarks Presentation Pack
Courtesy of Royal Mail, we have five Presentation Packs for the recent A-Z of Britain stamp issue to give away in the first of our regular competitions to win free British stamps and covers. [...]

Birds of Britain (4) Post & Go stamps set - Coastal Birds
The fourth and final set of six pictorial Post & Go Stamps has continued featuring the beauty and variety of Britain's birdlife. [...]

Royal Mail Ship RMS St Helena Featured by BBC
RMS St Helena is the last dedicated Royal Mail ship and she leaves the UK for months at a time to make her way around the South Atlantic calling at Cape Town, Tristan da Cunha, St Helena and Ascension Island. It would be an understatement to say the ship is a lifeleine to British Oceanic island communities, particularly following Gordon Brown's Government decision to shelve the building of a new airport on the island of St Helena. [...]

British Parliamentary Post Office Postal History & First Day Covers
Many British FDCs and commercial covers bearing the postmarks of the House of Commons or House of Lords can command premium valuations from philatelic dealers and collectors alike. [...]

How to Detect Regummed Victorian Postage Stamps
Whenever items are widely collected and significant cash values become involved there will inevitably be problems that people need to watch out for. Regumming of old postage stamps to appear like more valuable mint examples is one such abuse to be aware of. [...]

Post Boxes Miniature Sheet Issue Date 18 August 2009
Post Boxes have been in use in Great Britain for over 200 years and, according to this forthcoming Royal Mail miniature sheet, the earliest known posting 'slot' was installed in Wakefield in 1809. [...]




Queen Victoria Line Engraved GB Stamps 1840-1879

The earliest postage stamps issued in Great Britain used the Line Engraved printing process. Large print plates were engraved by skilled engravers. The printing process meant ink was applied on the plate with the excess wiped off before a paper sheet was pressed on to it so that impressions of the recessed, inked parts of the plate were transferred on to the paper.

For the line engraved stamps without plate numbers incorporated in to their designs it is only possible to distinguish between print plates used by studying the detailed variations of engraving, designs, repairs made and the alphabets used for corner lettering etc. This skilled aspect of philately has been made much easier for us today becuase of the many fine specialist reference books and catalogues published since victorian times.

Good quality Line Engraved stamps are always in demand. Take a look at the live online auctions for Line Engraved stamps ending shortly.



British Stamp & Philately Sites From Our Directory


Royal Mail Stamps Featuring Living People
Interesting article PDF file by Peter Jennings highlighting the current shambles of this once rigid Royal Mail policy.

GB Stamp Calendar 2013
Check the schedule of new GB special stamp and Post & Go faststamp issues during 2013.

Global Philately
Philatelic blog for all things philatelic, with a focus on the classics of the British Empire and Commonwealth

British Post & Go Stamps
Trace where any GB Post and Go stamp was issued from.

Aerophilately
UK Aerophilately website for airmails, first flights, Concorde covers and many other flown covers etc.

Positively Postal
I am so passionate about the postal system that I set up the website Positively Postal...

Index of GB Machin Definitive Issues at Wikipedia
A simplified listing of the iconic Arnold Machin designed definitive issues in use in Britain since 1967.

Collect Indian Stamps
Every Indian Stamp has a story to narrate.The rich cultural heritage of India is brought alive through stamps.Stamp collect is no more just a hobby it's an educational avocation.This dedicated site on indian philately will keep you up to date with latest

Machin Forum
The place to discuss the definitive stamp. Internet forum focused on the iconic QEII Definitive stamps featuring Arnold Machin's portrait of the Queen.

Bath Postal Museum Website
Bath Postal Museum is located at 27 Northgate Street (on the corner of Green Street) Bath, BA1 1AJ

Footyphila Plus
Sports philately with an emphasis on football (soccer).

Great Britain section of the Stamp Collecting Blog
Extensive philatelic blog. This directory entry leads to the GB section.

Stampex Website
The Competitions at Stampex are held under the auspices of the Association of British Philatelic Societies.

AK Philately
Adrian runs this interesting blog on all things philatelic from around the world.


Centenary of the First UK Aerial Post

First UK Aerial Post Centenary

We wrote some time ago about the first UK Aerial Post in 1911 and how the centenary of the event was approaching. As expected the Royal Mail marked the centenary on 9th September 2011 with a special stamp issue featuring photos of the event and a miniature sheet shown above which is styled on the publicity posters which were used to advertise the original event.

BRITISH PHILATELIC POSTMARK OF THE DAY: EXETER
Exeter philatelic postmark The featured GB philatelic postmark for Saturday Jul 04 2015 is from Exeter.

Collectors can get this special postmark applied by sending the stamped (minimum 1st Class rate) addressed envelope(s) to:

Wales & The West Special Handstamp Centre
Royal Mail
220-228 Penarth Road
CARDIFF CF11 8TA


You can ask for any date (including public holidays) to be applied to your covers provided you send them to arrive on or before that date. It is advised you send a suitable return envelope also if you want the covers sent back protected rather than individually through the regular mail service.
We feature a different UK philatelic postmark every day so check back again


GB Stamp Set Creates an A-Z of the UK

The Royal Mail has now finished what they announced as "a dramatic 26-stamp, alphabetical odyssey around the UK" featuring stamps showing iconic landmarks from across all four countries that make up the UK.

In 2012 Royal Mail completed the series with 14 stamps featuring places like "Station X" at Bletchley Park and the Tyne Bridge in Newcastle. The journey had actually begun when the UK A-Z Part One was issued back in October 2011. This comprised of twelve 1st Class stamps showing landmarks from A to L. The stamps took a fresh look at some of the UK’s most famous sights, ancient to modern and from spiritual to spectacular. Learn more about these stamps

GB Stamp Collecting & British Philatelic Publication News

The Stanley Gibbons Great Britain Concise Catalogue offers comprehensive details and prices for every British stamp issued since 1840. The stamp designs are illustrated in colour and catalogue listings include detailed watermark information, perforation details, colour shades, paper types (including phosphor bands) etc.

The catalogue also lists and prices First Day Covers (FDC), PHQ Postcards, official presentation packs, stamp booklets, postage due stamps, regional stamp issues, official stamps, postally valid fiscal stamps and the Royal Mail labels (Smilers). Order from Stanley Gibbons or see if one is available cheaper by online auction.



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