As mentioned in Blog 801, the New Zealand team at the Olympic Games has won its first medal - a silver in the women's trap shooting event - and the medallist, Natalie Rooney, therefore becomes the first of New Zealand's competitors to be featured on New Zealand Post's medal winners stamps. A delightful photograph of the medallist with her medal makes this an attractive issue and it is bound to be enormously popular in New Zealand. Rating:- *****.
Australia has now won 3 gold and 3 bronze medals (see Blog 801) but no news is available yet of the first of Australia Post's gold medallist stamps.
Just for the record, the Great Britain team has won its first gold medal in the form of Adam Peaty's victory in the men's 100m breast stroke swimming event but unlike the gold medallists at the London 2012 Games he will not feature on a stamp as Royal Mail has no plans to issue any such stamps this time round. I'm relieved about that mainly but now the Games have started and the medals have started to be awarded I have a slight twinge of regret that the British medallists will not be commemorated this year.
Finally, leaving the Olympics behind us, can anyone explain why the postal service of Netherlands, which has its own monarch, issued a stamp depicting Queen Elizabeth II on 2 August 2016? The "stamp" is produced in silver and has a tiny diamond included in it and sells for £43.43p. At least the price of this diamond-studded philatelic item is considerably less (£120 + tax) than the Jersey Post diamond-studded miniature sheet of 2012 - I guess in that context this Dutch item is a relative bargain.
You could argue that Netherlands is entitled to become a member of The Commonwealth should it wish since it had historical constitutional links with Great Britain, not the least of which being the choice of William Of Orange, the Dutch Stadtholder, as King of England in 1689.
Somehow, despite our close ties with Netherlands, I still don't think I shall be able to find a place in my collection for this particular "stamp". On the other hand, if the Dutch want to join The Commonwealth, well I just might have to think again.