It's all too easy to become pessimistic about our hobby in this tech age. Kids aren't interested we're told, stamps are issued in ever increasing numbers and the cost of new issues seems to go up faster than a greased weasle riding a bar of soap. Then we have the ever wider range of formats, some dubious topics commemorated while obvious historical events are ignored, and so we go on.
In a few days time the latest special stamps from Royal Mail become available. Designed to appeal to children, the animail stamp sheet looks much like those sheets of stickers that all kids play with when they're tots. So what's my rant about?
It appears the ability to issue 2nd class stamps and add logos to Post & Go stamps is now being assessed during the BFPO trial at HQ BFPO.
We've added a new section to the GB Stamp website to offer mobile device users some live feeds for closing stamp auctions and newly listed fixed price offerings.
Most current or former armed forces people will understand what the acronym SNAFU stands for but, to avoid offence, I will change one word and say it means "Situation Normal All Fudged Up". So what is the problem? Well, in terms of usage sessions, it's fair to say machine M001 being trialed at BFPO HQ has not had to break sweat but it did manage to do some fancy time travel recently.
Royal Mail have announced that a Battle of Jutland underprint will be available from the Post & Go machines installed at the Royal Navy museum sites.
A new philatelic marketplace website has launched - www.HipStamp.com - as an alternative to eBay. Run by the former Bidstart CEO and SG Director Mark Rosenberg, there's already plenty of sellers and listings to take a look at. But will HipStamp succeed? can it prove to be a genuine alternative to the gorilla that is eBay?
ANZAC Day is commemorated on 25 April every year and is now the most important national remembrance occasion in Australia and New Zealand. ANZAC Day marks the anniversary of the first major military action fought by Australian and New Zealand forces during World War 1. This year marked the Centenary of ANZAC Day and two special Postmarks were available in Great Britain to mark the occasion.
Royal Mail are celebrating the 90th birthday of HM The Queen with ten Special Stamps. Of particular note is the stamp sheet featuring the Queen and the next three princes in the line of succession photographed for Royal Mail by Ranald Mackechnie. Measuring about 18 x 7.4cm, we can hardly call it a miniature sheet!
It's given me no pleasure whatsoever to see the share price of Stanley Gibbons plummet like Felix Baumgartner and, for the sake of GB philately, I hope some skilled business management - who understand the hobby - will soon get involved.
I very much doubt there will ever be another GB definitive stamp issue to rival the longevity, complexity yet simple and iconic design of Great Britain's Machin defintive stamp series. Not only is it unlikely a future monarch will reign long enough in the foreseeable future, but it also seems inevitable the traditional lick or peel postage stamp will, I believe, succumb to the relentless march of the tech age. As HM The Queen is about to celebrate her 90th Birthday, it is fair to say this wonderful series of stamps is now closer to its end than its birth in its fiftieth year of use.
As a long term West Ham supporter I've always referred to the home of "the Hammers" as Upton Park but, more recently, the use of the Boleyn Ground name has been popular. I believe the reality is that the Boleyn Ground stands on what was once Upton Park in East London but, whatever name you prefer, the fact is West Ham United are now playing their last games at the ground before taking over at the reconfigured 2012 Olympic Stadium just down the road. To bid farewell to Upton Park some 112 seasons since their first game against Millwall on September 1st 1904, Royal Mail is issuing a stamp sheet in collaboration with the club.
April 3rd this year marked the 25th anniversary of Graham Greene's passing. Widely regarded as one of the greatest British writers of the 20th century, this postcard featuring a vintage movie poster of Richard Attenborough as "Pinkie Brown" in Brighton Rock, features a Post & Go stamp cancelled with a special Berkhamsted postmark struck on the anniversary.
The stamps and collectables marketplace website Delcampe.net have announced the forthcoming launch of a new look within the next few weeks. As part of the new design, the Delcampe website has been upgraded for modern technology standards and has been designed with ease of use in mind for both buyers and sellers.
Last Thursday eBay UK sprung a surprise flash sale on everyone and users visiting their website or tipped of by friends and family on social media were granted 20% off the purchase cost of eveything. The only conditions were using Paypal to enable the discount coupon code and a minimum spend of £20 with a maximum discount of £50. This meant you could get 20% off purchases costing up to £250.
A special postmark to keep an eye out for was in use on 31st March to mark the 175th anniversary of the Glasgow, Paisley and Greenock Railway (GP&GR). View the postmark and read more about the history of one of Scotland's oldest railways.