Way back in the mid 1990s, when I started coming to the UK much more frequently, and had just come back into stamp collecting, I made sure I got friendly with the local post mistress. As one does. I must have done something right for she soon let me handle her newly received stamp sheets and let me tear out cylinder and date of printing blocks.
Then one day, with a slightly secretive look on her face, she handed me this brown envelope, saying she wasn’t sure whether she was allowed to do so, but would I be interested in all these old A4 post office stamp posters?
Thrilled to bits, I gladly accepted them, and now here they are back on my desk again. They’re from a period of time during which many a gorgeous stamp set was issued by Royal Mail. I particularly like the ‘Women of Achievement’ issue and the ‘Classic Cars’ issue.
But there were also more general posters, advertising several stamp books with special offers (chocolate!) and competitions. And the 1996 version of Post Early for Christmas campaign.
My lovely postmistress was stationed in rural Wales so many of the posters were either bilingual or completely in Welsh, which of course makes them even more special.
I love the one of the 1998 stamp issues programme. Look at the dormouse on the left, that was actually a photograph used on an unadopted essay for the Endangered Species set! It has since appeared on one of the Stampex postcards, but that item is still lost somewhere on another shelf so I can’t show that to you.
It’s only a pity that the one poster with a proper Welsh subject, that of the Princess Diana set, is actually in English only. That one would have been great to have got in Welsh, but my postmistress may well have kept that one for herself!
See yous later