Thursday, 21 January 2021

1815. ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ช Ireland Commemorates Artist Patrick Scott.


๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ช An Post, the postal service of the Republic of Ireland, issued a single stamp in an unusual presentation on 21 January 2021 to commemorate the Birth centenary of the Irish artist Patrick Scott who was born in Kilbrittain in County Cork. The stamp depicts his work Meditation Painting 28 and has a face value of €3 but is issued in a format whereby 2 of the stamps are separated by a valueless label depicting the painting Gold Painting 21 at the price of €7 (thereby paying €1 above face value though the item, described as a miniature sheet though it does not look like one from the publicity photographs, is sold in a “premium grey folder and sealed with an attractive gold seal”).

  The item was designed by Oonagh Young and lithographed with cold silver foil and matt varnish by Enschedรฉ. Rating:- ***.

๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ฎ The Royal Gibraltar Post Office will issue a pair of stamps on 30 January 2021 to commemorate the Chinese New Year, The Year of the Ox. The face value of the pair amounts to a wholly unnecessary £6.40p especially as the subject matter is is of trifling relevance to the territory. Rating:- 0. 

๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ฒ The Isle Of Man Post Office will issue a set of 6 stamps on 26 February 2021 to commemorate the 95th Birthday of Queen Elizabeth II. The set costs £8.77p and was designed by Andrew Robinson and lithographed by Cartor and is perforated 13. Rating:- **.


  If you’ve a further £45 to spend Isle Of Man Post Office will be delighted to sell you the Chinese New Year sheetlet of 20 triangular stamps in an imperforate state.The item was issued on 7 January 2021 along with the perforated version but is, of course, in a limited edition of 100. And just to prove it’s real there is an accompanying Certificate of Authenticity. Rating:- 0.

Wednesday, 20 January 2021

1814. ๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ฐ Argentina Reasserts Philatelic Claim To The Falklands.


๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ฐ I thought it would be interesting to start with a recent issue from a non-Commonwealth postal service for a change.The postal service of Argentina has issued recently a miniature sheet containing a single stamp depicting a map of the Falkland Islands to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the “first raising of the Argentine national flag in the Islas Malvinas”.

  Up until 1764 the islands had been visited by explorers of various European nationalities and the French then established a colony at Port St Louis and and named the islands the รŽles Malouines after the port of St Malo in Brittany. In 1764, the English Captain John Bryant, unaware of the French presence at Port St Louis in East Falkland, landed at West Falkland, discovered a natural harbour which he called Port Edmonton and claimed the islands in the name of Great Britain. In 1766 Captain James MacBride established a permanent British base at Port Egmont..

  By a pact of 1766 the French agreed with the Spanish to leave the Malouines and handed Port St Louis over to the Spanish which they renamed Puerto Soledad in 1767. On 10 June 1770 the Spanish with 1400 troops in 5 ships forced the British to leave Prince Egmont hence precipitating the Falklands Crisis which came close to being an Anglo-Spanish war but in January 1771 Captain John Stott reestablished the British in Port Egmont when he arrived in HMS Juno, HMS Hound and the mail ship HMS Florida. Port Egmont subsequently became an important port-of-call for British ships rounding the Cape of Good Hope.

  Because of the pressures of the American revolution, British forces were withdrawn for redeployment from Port Egmont on 20 May 1776 but the Royal Navy officer, Lt Clayton left a plaque asserting British sovereignty over the Falklands. British sealers continued to use Port Egmont in the following 4 years but the Spanish destroyed the colony in 1780. The Spanish administered the colony at Puerto Soledad from Montevideo (in modern-day Uruguay) until they were forced to withdraw because of the pressures of the Peninsula War. The islands again became shelters for visiting whalers and sealers.

  In 1820, the American David Jewett claimed the islands in the name of The United Provinces of Rio De La Plata and on 6 November 1820 he raised the flag of the United Provinces at Port Louis. This event is commemorated by the present miniature sheet from Argentina illustrated below and above. Jewett did not stay in the Falklands for very long, departing in April 1821 having been accused of piracy and ultimately fleeing to Brazil. From 1824 the United Provinces attempted to settle the islands but the British sent Captain James Onslow aboard HMS Clio in 1833 who arrived on 3 January and replaced the flag of the United Provinces with the Union Jack. The United Provinces commander departed the islands on 5 January 1833. 

  The United Provinces/Argentine flag did not fly over the Falkland Islands again until 1982 when on 2 April Argentine forces landed on the islands and occupied the territory. The Argentine postal service reissued a previous stamp depicting a rosette of the national colours bearing the overprint Las Malvinas Son Argentinas in four lines 1982. A British task force set sail to liberate the islands and the Argentine commander in the Falklands surrendered on 14 June 1982 after the fall of the capital, Port Stanley. The flying of the Argentine flag over the islands on this second occasion was limited to a period of just over 2 months. 

  The restored Falkland Islands postal service subsequently issued a £1 + £1 (restoration fund) stamp on 13 September 1982 (see Blog of 14 June 2012) which depicted a map of the Falkland Islands. This stamp is very similar to that placed inside the latest Argentinian miniature sheet (see below).

  A short-term definitive set was also issued by the Falkland Islands Post Office in 1983 and the 1p value depicted the raising of the Union Jack in 1833 on the 150th anniversary of the reestablishment of British administration in the territory and of the actual flag raising and assertion of sovereignty.


  Interestingly the Argentine postal service has also issued recently another miniature sheet which commemorates General Manuel Belgrano (1770-1820) who unsuccessfully attempted to resist the British invasion of Rio de la Plata in 1806 when his troops fled at the single firing of a British cannon, escaping himself to Montevideo in Banda Oriental (modern-day Uruguay). The British as a result captured parts of Buenos Aires temporarily (the events are detailed in Blog 281). Ironically, during the Falklands War, the first vessel to be sunk on either side was the Argentine ship General Belgrano.

  These issues illustrate very nicely that postage stamps can be used, and frequently are, to serve not just as receipts for the pre-postage of mail items and as additional income for postal services through philatelic sales, but also importantly as a means of laying claims to territory and asserting sovereignty over territories as well as trying to achieve other political and diplomatic goals by broadcasting them on postage stamps. Some nations very ably use philatelic methods to assert their positions and status in the world while others are content to allow privatised postal services or foreign philatelic agencies to fully ignore this useful philatelic diplomatic tool in the sole pursuit of making money from postage stamps.

๐Ÿ‡ฏ๐Ÿ‡ช For no obvious good reason Jersey Post will issue a set of 6 stamps on 17 February 2021 on the subject of Historic maps of Jersey. One of the stamps, the 70p value, will represent this year’s Jersey Post contribution to the annual SEPAC omnibus series. Rating:- **.

๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡พ Depicted below are better illustrations than shown before here of the 3 self-adhesive stamps, each issued in a separate booklet of 10, from the recently issued new definitive series released by the postal service of Cayman Islands. See Blog 1799.

Thursday, 14 January 2021

1813. ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง Royal Mail Celebrates The United Kingdom.

๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง Royal Mail will issue 1 miniature sheet containing 4 different stamps on 26 January 2021 on the subject of ‘United Kingdom - a celebration’. It is either a masterpiece of design or the most misconceived issue for a long time. Clearly the issue is philatelic Marmite. And what’s it for? Is it Post-imperial? Post Covid? Post-Europe? Or just Post-post? Rating:- *.

  The miniature sheet was designed by hat-trick design and lithographed by International Security Printers and is perforated 14.5.


๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฉ Bangladesh Post issued a single stamp on 12 January 2021 to commemorate the 49th anniversary of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman becoming the prime minister of Bangladesh. This is a further issue in the present continuing series which is being released to commemorate the Birth Centenary of Sheikh Mujib. Rating:- **.

Sunday, 10 January 2021

1812. ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Canada Post’s 2021 Black History Issue.



๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Canada Post will issue 2 self-adhesive stamps on 22 January 2021 as another part of its ongoing Black History series. The stamps are issued in a single booklet containing 3 panes (the first containing 4 of one design and the second 4 of the other, the third pane containing 1 of each design). The issue was designed by Lime Design. Rating:- ****.

  The Chinese new year booklet of 12 and accompanying miniature sheet mentioned in Blog 1811 and due for issue on 15 January 2021 was designed by Paprika Design. Interesting that Canadian graphic design companies seem to like to name themselves after meal ingredients. 

๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฉ The postal service of Bangladesh continued with its issues related to the Centenary of the birth of the country’s founding father, Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, by issuing a single stamp on 8 January 2021 which marks Jail Release Day, the anniversary of Sheikh Mujib’s release from a Pakistani jail on 8 January 1972 after Bangladesh had won its independence in the civil war. Rating:- ***.

A second stamp was issued on 10 January 2021 to commemorate the 49th anniversary of Sheikh Mujib’s return to Bangladesh after his release from jail by the Pakistani government. Rating:- ***.

Friday, 8 January 2021

1811. ๐Ÿ‡ฏ๐Ÿ‡ช Jersey Post Features Birds In ‘Flockdown’.


๐Ÿ‡ฏ๐Ÿ‡ช Jersey Post has come up with a whimsical approach to the COVID-19 theme which has resulted in a set of 8 stamps needing to be issued on 1 March 2021. The title of the issue notes the ‘lockdown’ which has shut down the island for a sustained period as a means of preventing the rampant coronavirus from spreading among the island’s residents. One Jersey resident, Berni Martin of St Brelade, resolved to pass the period of enforced isolation by painting a fanciful picture of a bird each day for 100 days and some of the results of her labours are used as designs for the new stamps which are at least an original and cheerful approach to the philatelic commemoration of this gruelling period in our modern history which has yet to see its endgame. The issue’s title is ‘Flockdown’. The stamps are self-adhesive and were lithographed by Cartor. Rating:- ***.

๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฆ In Blog 1806 I illustrated the sheetlet of 12 stamps due to be released by Canada Post on 15 January 2021 to mark the end of its Lunar new year series. The stamps will also be issued in self-adhesive format in booklets of 12 as depicted below and the 12 accompanying miniature sheets will be rereleased in a ‘press sheet’ which must be an enormous item for which I can find no use at all. I mean, what do you do with the things when you’ve spent a lot of money on them?

๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ช An Post, the postal service of the Irish Republic has released details of its planned new stamp issues for 2021:-