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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:  Thematic philately, also referred to as topical philately, is the study of the pictures and subjects depicted on postage stamps. There are numerous very popular subjects including birds, football, insects, flowers etc. As with other forms of philately stamps displaying design errors are much in demand. While thematic stamp collecting has been more popular in the US and Europe, it is now gathering pace in the UK and GB stamps already cover many of the most popular topics.

Recent British Stamps & Philately Articles

Royal Mail Postmark Congratulates Molly Robson from Horsham
Following the series of 24 postmarks used for a day in the past month to congratulate the finalists in their Christmas Stamp Design Competition, the two winners are receiving a second day of postmark fame courtesy of Royal Mail. [...]

Planning App for Underground Railway Preservation Submitted by BPMA
A planning application has been submitted by the British Postal Museum & Archive (BPMA) to develop a section of the now disused Post Office Underground Railway known by many as "Mail Rail". [...]

Collecting Post & Go Stamps on Cover Will Pay Dividend to Collectors
How many letters have you received bearing a Post & Go stamp? Chances are it's not many, if any, yet and I believe this should be seen as a tip in itself to start collecting commercially used Post & Go covers as they are part of our future postal history. [...]

Stanley Gibbons Offer Rare Penny Black Master Die Proof
Stanley Gibbons are currently offering for sale a Master Die Proof for the Penny Black, the world's first postage stamp, which is one of only two complete examples in private hands from a total of five known examples in the world. [...]

Royal Mail Highlights British Fashion Icons
A preview of the ten special first-class stamps celebrating Great Britain's Fashion icons due to be released by Royal Mail on 15th May 2012. [...]

Royal Mail Group Employees Achieve Charitable World Record
The workforce of Royal Mail Group have today become holders of a Guinness World Record title as Royal Mail Group was awarded the record for the most registered charities supported by a Payroll Giving Scheme. [...]

Post and Go Stamps: Quickly Identify a Post & Go Stamp's Machine Location
Post and Go stamps are creating a buzz. Whether you currently love or loathe them, I believe the Post & Go format looks set to become Great Britian's stamp for everyday use. To help collectors research and write up Post & Go stamp collections there's now a useful online database that's free and quick to use. [...]

Six Philatelic Predictions & Tips for 2012
Over the years, as we prepare for the festive season, I like to cast my mind forward to the coming new year and buy a few items for my philatelic "pension fund" based on my predictions of the philatelic topics and events that will likely make headlines. [...]

Christmas 2011 Last Posting Dates
Royal Mail hass announced the last posting dates for Christmas deliveries in 2011. [...]

What is a Cinderella Stamp?
In the philatelic world a cinderella stamp is usually defined as something which resembles a normal postage stamp that was not issued for official purposes by an official postal administration. As they are best defined by what they DO NOT represent, cinderella stamps can be broken up in to many specific sub-types of collectable label including poster stamps, propaganda labels, commemorative stickers, stamps issued by unrecognised nations and/or governments, court stamps, charity labels, Christmas seals, telegraph stamps, railway stamps, local stamps etc. [...]

England Cricket Teams No 1 Status Marked By Bletchley Park Post Office Cover
A limited edition commemorative cover has been issued by Bletchley Park post Office to commemorate England becoming the Number 1 cricketing nation following their remarkable whitewash of India this summer. [...]

FAB Thunderbirds Perforation Error Discovered
An imperforate miniature sheet of the four Thunderbirds stamps issued by Royal Mail to commemorate the genius of Gerry Anderson has recently been discovered. [...]

Paul Fraser Collectibles Announce Rare GB Stamp Error Achieves 85,000 Pounds
Paul Fraser Collectibles billed the sale of the 1976 Sweet Briar Rose with value missing as 'the most important stamp error of the 20th Century' as only three examples of the stamp displaying this amazing error are known to exist. [...]

Delcampe Tempts British Stamp Collectors Away from eBay
The specialist collector's auction website Delcampe displays nearly 25 million items listed from the various countries that participate. With more than 20 Million items actually sold now, the growth at Delcampe has been very impressive and means the site really is becoming a true competitor to eBay for buyers and sellers of stamps and other collectables. [...]

London 2010: Festival of Stamps to Also Feature Exhibitions & Events Around the UK
London 2010: Festival of Stamps is being billed as "a year-long programme to mark the centenary of the accession of George V - the philatelist king - and in celebration of stamps, stamp design and postal heritage". So what's in store for us? [...]

GB Official Postage Stamps 1882 - 1904
During the reign of Queen Victoria, and the early part of the Edward VII era, GB postage stamps were overprinted for use by  Government Departments and bodies like the Royal Household. These have become collectively known as Official Stamps although the first "official" was produced but not issued as early as 1840. [...]

Will UK Stamp Dealers Ever Compete With eBay?
As eBay celebrate their 10 years in the UK it seems few stamp dealers have managed to seriously compete with the auction giant to attract collectors and generate volume sales online. So why isn't there a better online sales platform for stamp dealers? [...]

Save Money by Buying Discounted British Postage Stamps
British stamp dealers handle vast quantities of collectable stamps and inevitably they build up large stocks of common stamps that don't merit advertising or holding in stock. As a result some stamp dealers dispose of these mint, postally valid stamps at prices discounted from their actual face value. [...]

The GB Travelling Post Offices - TPO Services
Mail was carried by train as early as 1830 in the UK but it was in 1838 that the actual sorting of mail began on board while the train was in transit and the Travelling Post Office service, or TPO as we know it, begun. [...]

Edward VII GB Stamps 1902-1913

The stamps from the reign of Edward VII are an ever popular period for British stamp collectors and philatelists. Although only 19 basic stamps were issued during this period, the employment of three different printers means a huge array of variations exist relating to the paper, perforations and shades of printing ink. This explains why the Edward VII era is the subject of many specialised GB stamp collections.

Take a look at the live online Edward VII stamp auctions ending soon.

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.

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

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.

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.

Cardiff philatelic postmark The featured GB philatelic postmark for Saturday Mar 28 2015 is from Cardiff.

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

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 British Philatelic Bulletin is published every two weeks or so by the Royal Mail. The publication contains various articles together with details of current and future stamp issues. Available by subscription from the Royal Mail Website at a current cost of £12.95 in the UK and Europe or £17.95 for subscribers outside of Europe.

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