Saturday, 29 April 2017

990. Charming Conservation Stamps From Jersey, Tsunami Of Issues From Australia Post.

   πŸ‡―πŸ‡ͺ Jersey Post has announced 2 new issues for June. A charming set of 6 stamps and 1 miniature sheet will be issued on 14 June 2017 to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Darwin Initiative which is a United Kingdom grants scheme that helps to protect biodiversity and the natural environment through locally based projects worldwide and which is partnered with Gerald Durrell's Jersey Wildlife Conservation Trust. The issue highlights projects which have been undertaken by Durrell and feature six species which have benefited from his work. The miniature sheet stamp depicts Charles Darwin.
  The designs are from illustrations by Sara Menon and printing was by Cartor. The stamps are gummed but the miniature sheet is self-adhesive. This is a very attractive set and highlights a subject of local importance in Jersey. Rating:- *****.

  The Darwin/Durrell issue is preceded by a set of 6 stamps and 1 miniature sheet which are to be released on 7 June 2017 and which commemorates the Centenary of Lions Clubs International. It's a pleasant enough set and was designed by So Design Consultants and lithographed by Lowe-Martin. Rating:- ***.

  πŸ‡¦πŸ‡Ί Australia Post is planning to release a very large number of issues over the next couple of months and there seems very little reason for it to do so in most cases apart from the obvious reason which is financial gain.
  The first is on the subject of "Caves" and is due for release on 2 May 2017. The issue is made up of basic stamps (total face value $7), a $20 booklet of 20 x $1 self-adhesive stamps in 2 different designs (plus a $400 "chequebook" of 20 x 20 self-adhesive stamps) and a strip of 2 different $1 stamps sold in self-adhesive coils of 100. The issue was designed by Jo Mure and lithographed by RA Printing and perforated 14 x 14.5. Rating:- *.

  On 16 May 2017 an issue on the subject of Street art will be released which is made up of 4 basic gummed stamps, a gummed miniature and a $10 booklet of 10 x $1 self-adhesive stamps. Oh yes, there's a "chequebook" of 20 x 10 x $1 stamps costing $200. The issue was designed by John White and lithographed by EGO and perforated 14.5 x 14. The designs include some interesting and attractive art but placed in the context of the philatelic overload Australia Post has allowed to get itself into, the Rating is:- *.

  A single gummed $1 stamp produced in sheetlets of 10 will be issued on 24 May to commemorate the 50th anniversary of a constitutional referendum in Australia which affected the rights of indigenous peoples. The stamp was designed by Rachael Sarra Gilimbaa and lithographed by RA Printing and perforated 14.5 x 14. This is a significant anniversary in Australia's modern history and though the design is not particularly attractive the stamp is quite interesting. Rating:- ***.

  Another single stamp will be issued on 7 June 2017 to commemorate the Centenary of Lions Clubs International. This issue will be released in gummed form and in self-adhesive form from $20 booklets of 20 x $1 (plus $400 "chequebooks" of 20 x 20 x $1). The stamp was designed by Lynda Warner and lithographed by RA Printing and perforated 14 x 14.5. Rating:- *.

  Two gummed stamps and 1 miniature sheet will be issued on 17 June 2017 to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the birth of the Australian poet and story writer Henry Lawson. Each stamp will also be available in self-adhesive format, the $1 value from $20 booklets of 20 (plus $400 "chequebooks" of 20 x 20) and the $2.95 from "sheetlets" of 5 stamps sold for $14.75 plus $295 "chequebooks" of 20 x 5 x $2.95 stamps. The issue was designed by Jamie and Leanne Tuffney and lithographed by EGO and perforated 14 x 14.5. Rating:- ***.

  Yet more on 20 June 2017 on the subject of "Australian succulents". The issue is made up of 4 gummed stamps, 4 self-adhesive stamps sold in $10 booklets of 10 (plus a $200 "chequebook" of 20 x 10 x $1) and strips of 4 stamps from self-adhesive coils. The issue was designed by Janet Boschen and lithographed by EGO or Pemara (coil stamps) and perforated 14 x 14.5. Rating:- *.

  Australia Post will also release its annual "Australian Legends" set on 29 May 2017 but details of the issue have not yet been released. If the past is anything to go by these will result in a large number of new stamps with gummed and self-adhesive versions. We await the details of this issue with bated breath.
   πŸ‡¦πŸ‡ΊπŸ‡¨πŸ‡¨ But that's not all. Australia Post will also issue 4 stamps and 1 miniature sheet inscribed "Cocos (Keeling) Islands Australia" on the subject of "Garden fruits of Cocos". This issue is scheduled for release on 30 May 2017 and was designed by Anita Xhafer and lithographed by EGO and perforated 14 x 14.5. Rating:- ***.


  1. While I do not support the plothera of issues to be released by Australia Post over the next two months one thing to be said about them is that all by one of the stamps covers the current domestic rates, and so collectors stand a chance of actually getting them on mail, rather than the situation with the UK where many issues consist of overseas rate stamps which local collectors will rarely ever find in used condition.

    1. Hello again. Fair point. However here in England no-one actually seems to use stamps at all and there are of course a number of 1st Class rate commemoratives issued in any given year. Perhaps commemorative stamps would be used more here if 2nd class values appeared more regularly. But the only time I ever see stamps, let alone special stamps, used on ordinary domestic mail is if someone sends a greetings card of some type or the other. The only mail I otherwise receive with stamps affixed is philatelic in nature and it even seems that very few stamp dealers or philatelic bureaux use up to date commemoratives now.
      Best wishes.

  2. Has 'Post & Go' labels effectively replaced the postage stamp? What is the deal with these anyway? Are they classed as postage stamps and do collectors collect them as such?

  3. Hello. If the definition of a postage stamp is that it is a receipt for prepayment of postage to be fixed to an item of mail to indicate that the postage has indeed been paid then Post and Go stamps/labels must indeed be postage stamps.

    The main feature of Post and Go stamps is that they are vended from a machine rather than by a human across a post office or shop counter and also the value is added to the stamp at the time of sale rather than being preprinted on the stamp.

    Post And Go stamps have not replaced postage stamps and are not sold at every postal outlet.

    I certainly collect Post and Go stamps as postage stamps and I think they are an important part of the story of the development of postage stamps - an example of how the advance of new technology has changed the sort of postage stamp we can buy and use on our mail.

  4. When I was recently in the UK I found it very hard (a) to find a post office - most seem to have been relegated to a counter in the corner of some other shop, and (b) to find a post office that actually sold stamps and not just printed labels (as opposed to Post & Go).

    1. Hello Stephen,
      You are quite right. Many post offices are indeed located inside other shops now.
      Most, in my experience, do sell postage stamps but I suppose they are mainly a limited range of definitives along with any odd values of commemoratives they may not yet have sold.
      My own local post office is a small suburban p.o. located in a newsagents and general stores. The building it is located in has been a post office and general stores since the 1890s. I can usually get basic sets of new issues when they are released but these often get used up quite quickly. If one hands over an item for mailing then counter printed labels are used unless you ask specifically to use postage stamps on them.

      Post offices are generally more interested in selling foreign currency or insurance policies to you than selling postage stamps because, presumably, there's more money to be made from the former.