Wednesday, 10 May 2017

998. Cyprus Issues Its Europa Stamps.

  πŸ‡¨πŸ‡Ύ Cyprus Post issued 2 stamps depicting local castles on 4 May 2017 as its contribution to the 2017 Europa omnibus. The stamps were designed by Ioanna Kalli and Paschalis Eliopoulis and lithographed by Veridos Matsoukis SA, Greece. The issue is accompanied by a booklet. The depicted castles are:- Larnaka Castle and Pafos Castle. Rating:- ****.

  πŸ‡ΉπŸ‡· Meanwhile, the postal service of the Turkish Republic Of Northern Cyprus will also issue a pair of Europa stamps on 11 May 2017. The issue was designed by GK Sonmezer. Rating:- ****

  πŸ‡²πŸ‡Ή Along with the pair of Europa stamps mentioned in Blog 993 which were issued by Malta Post on 9 May 2017 a booklet containing the lower valued stamp was also released. The booklet contains 5 x 59c stamps. Rating:- ***.
  Maltapost will also issue a 37c "Map of Malta" Greetings stamp with attached label on 11 May 2017 to commemorate the Maltese philatelic bureau's participation in the philatelic exhibition to be held in Essen from 11 - 13 May 2017. These stamps with attached labels are an excellent way to mark a post office's attendance at a philatelic exhibition and so much cheaper than the issue of numerous "Collectors strips" of Post and Go labels. Rating:- ***.


  πŸ‡¬πŸ‡¬  Another booklet to take note of is a "Prestige Booklet" put out by Guernsey Post with the name of Alderney printed on the stamps and on the subject of "Alderney scenes". The price of the item is £16.24p. Rating:- *.

  The Guernsey Philatelic Bureau tweeted on 8 May 2017 that Post and Go kiosk GG01 sited in its Smith Street post office had dispensed strips of its Lighthouses stamps on that day to welcome the cruise ship Celebrity Eclipse into port. The labels had a Welcome inscription added to it. See also Blog 950, 954, 955 and 994.

  πŸ‡­πŸ‡° Hong Kong Post will issue a set of 6 stamps and 1 miniature sheet on 16 May 2017 on the subject of "Outdoor fun". The set was designed by Simon Chung and lithographed by Enschede and perforated 13.5. This is a somewhat inconsequential issue. Rating:- ***.

  πŸ‡¨πŸ‡¦ Canada Post has released the 4th design of its Canada 150 issue to be released on 1 June 2017. The stamp recalls the passing of the law on 20 July 2005 which allowed non-heterosexual people to marry. The designer has resorted to the cliche of depicting a rainbow-coloured flag to illustrate the subject. Rating:- *.


  1. It might not be the most imaginative design but it cheery and colourful and I'd love to receive it on my mail. You would have to be careful where you sent it though..... it would be interesting to see how countries where Homosexuality is illegal would behave with these stamps - maybe black it out like what used to happen in East Germany.

    1. Hello. Yes the stamp is indeed colourful and though, I suppose, the flag is familiar to people in the West I suspect that this may be less true in countries where homosexuality is less well tolerated. Of course the stamp is in the Canadian domestic rate so it's unlikely to be used for overseas mail.

  2. The Rainbow/Pride flag is the most recognisable symbol of the LGBTI community, and probably the easiest way to represent the community and the momentous change this represents.

    1. Thank you Chris. The use of flags on stamps, along with ubiquitous white doves to symbolise Peace, seems to me to be very old hat and suggest that the stamp designer has a limited imagination unless he/she is directed to use such objects by the commissioning stamp issuer.
      The fun thing about "Flags on Stamps" is that it is not unusual for stamp issues to include incorrect flags in their designs - I have reported a number of these over the years in this Blog - stamp designers sometimes use out of date flags or, quite simply, the wrong flags.

      Stamp designers are best advised to give flags a wide berth and come up with some other design element which puts a fresh slant on the subject they are trying to illustrate.

  3. I agree that at times flags can be a very unimaginative approach, but they can also be effective. The joint issue between the UK and Australia in 1988 cleverly included the Australian flag across the two stamps while showing the connections between the two countries. Individually the stamps worked too with the Union Jack on one representing the UK and Southern Cross on the other representing Australia.

    May I also suggest that the Pride flag is probably a safe choice too. I hate to say it but the majority of collectors are probably conservative in their views so this is a safe way to represent a subject which for some is still controversial.

    1. Chris,
      You are quite right in both of the points that you make here.
      The success of the use of flags in the GB-Australia stamps was the inclusion of other interesting elements in the stamps. And of course, on your second point, commercial organisations have to be very careful not to upset anyone in this era where people so easily take offence where none was necessarily intended.