Wednesday 16 April 2014

396. Have Turks And Caicos Delivered Their Royal Baby?

  I have mentioned previously the somewhat preposterous stamp issue prepared for The Turks And Caicos Islands (Blog 340) which was intended, in its rather unusual fashion, to commemorate the birth of Prince George Of Cambridge and which the islands' philatelic agents on their website say was issued on 1 October 2013. However I have not seen any dealer or seller on the Internet offering this issue for sale and I wonder if someone in Turks And Caicos thought better of putting these items on sale and as a result declined to actually issue them. Cyberstamps, which handles material from this particular philatelic agency, features this issue on its website but does not have it available in stock to sell when an order for the issue is placed with them which may be significant. Does anyone know if this pair of items was actually issued in Turks And Caicos? (post scriptum - see comment below from Peter (USA) ).
 Also looking back to last year, in Blog 334, I mentioned some issues of 2013 from Anguilla but I had not seen these offered for sale till now but Bombay Philatelic Inc., which I find to be an excellent source of  Commonwealth new issues, has now listed 3 sets and 1 miniature sheet for sale. I mentioned 2 of the issues in Blog 334 and Bombay Philatelic is selling both of those plus a third set of which I was not previously aware:-

  2013 (precise date not yet known) - 60th anniversary of Secondary education in Anguilla - 4 stamps:-

  25 November 2013 - Anguillan seafaring captains - 8 stamps and 1 miniature sheet:-

  11 November 2013 - Bicentenary of Methodism in Anguilla - 3 stamps:- 

  So, 3 excellent sets of stamps which are totally relevant to Anguilla and as such are very interesting and highly collectable and no Elvis Presley, Marilyn Monroe or Parrots of the World stamps in sight.  
  The Bombay Philatelic Inc. site also features a new $1 Trinidad And Tobago surcharge which is the $2.50 bird definitive depicting a Bay headed tanager, with 1990 imprint. Again, I have not seen this stamp mentioned anywhere else before and so I do not yet know the date of issue:-

  In Blog 393 I detailed some new issues from St. Kitts and among other things, complained that a sheetlet of 6 stamps was being issued for the territory on the subject of hummingbirds but none of the featured species occur in the islands while the 3 that are found there are not depicted on the stamps! The Bombay Philatelics Inc. site features yet more recent issues from St. Kitts - 1 sheetlet of 4 stamps and 1 accompanying miniature sheet on the subject of "Marine mammals of the Caribbean" - according to Wikipedia, only 2 cetacean species are found in St. Kitts waters - Fraser's dolphin and Risso's dolphin - and yes, you've guessed it - none of the depicted marine mammals featured on the 4 stamps is either of those 2 species. However - good news - the West Indian manatee which appears on the $9 stamp of the miniature sheet is actually a St. Kitts species so anyone buying the miniature sheet will be actually obtaining a locally relevant stamp though whether or not it will be on sale in St. Kitts for use on ordinary mail is another question altogether:-

  Also listed by Bombay Philatelic Inc is a sheetlet of 5 different stamps and 1 accompanying miniature sheet which depict "Orchids" (issued 26 August 2013) - whether or not they are locally occurring species I can not say:-

  Everywhere, it seems, stamp collectors as well as mail senders are having to face a rise in postage rates - I have recently shown new stamps associated with increased prices in Britain, Australia, Canada and even Guyana, and on 7 May 2014, New Zealand will join this list with an array of new stamps in new values to meet the needs of increased postage rates. Four new gummed stamps and 2 self-adhesive stamps from booklets of 10 will be released and will depict New Zealand scenery:-

  On the same date, 2 gummed stamps (80c and $2.50) will be released in the now familiar "All Blacks" designs and it is also apparently necessary to issue a miniature sheet to accompany this pair which includes 2 of each value:-

  Naturally, it is also necessary to release Greetings stamps and so, also on 7 May 2014, 2 sheetlets of gummed stamps will be issued in the new values - one consists of 8 x 80c stamps and the other contains 2 x $2 and 2 x $2.50c stamps:-

  To keep up with what is happening in the highly complicated world of Royal Mail Machin Head definitive stamps it is vital to follow Norvic Philatelics Blog and their blog of 15 April points out to its readers that so far during 2014, there have been 18 new varieties of the series issued across post office counters. 
Norvic's Blog lists the following:-
  2nd class coil printed by Walsall Sec Ptrs with security code M12L MRIL
  2p from Locomotives prestige booklet M13L MPIL (Blog 352)
  5p from Locomotives prestige booklet M13L MPIL (Blog 352)
  2nd class counter sheet M14L
  81p, 97p, £1.47 and £2.15 new values (see Blog 376)
  2nd class large ex-business sheet MBIL
  1st class from booklet of 12 MTIL
  10p MPIL, 20p MPIL, £1 MPIL from Buckingham Palace prestige booklet (Blog 362)

  1st class MCIL from Buckingham Palace mixed retail booklet (Blog 362)

  10p M14L MAIL from counter sheet
  20p M14L MAIL from counter sheet
  £1 M14L MAIL from counter sheet
  £1.28 M14L MAIL from counter sheet.
  All except the last 2 items seem to be currently in their stock available to purchase.


  1. I have the Turks and Caicos Royal Baby issue, it has been released at least by IGPC. Did you see the messages I posted here before asking if you are interested to exchange stamps?
    Please see my Excel offerlist and website with scans of more offers here:


    Peter (USA)

    1. Dear Peter, Many thanks for your comment. It is very helpful to know that these items have appeared on the market. Presumably I will spot someone selling the set eventually. I will be very interested to look at your website and offer list as detailed above. Very many thanks and best wishes.

  2. Thank you very much, I hope you find some items that interest you in my offers for exchange. I have mint sets and minisheets as well as used items, FDCs and postal covers from Commonwealth countries such as GB and the Channel Islands, Rwanda, Solomon Islands, Antigua & Barbuda, St. Vincent, Pakistan, Malaysia, Maldives, Grenada, Lesotho, Guyana, Malawi, Jamaica, Malta, Cyprus, India, Australia, Canada, NZ, South Africa. I also have a wide selection of items from non-Commonwealth countries. My e-mail:

    Thanks and best regards,

  3. My local post office - i.e. the post office in central Manchester - did not have the complete set of the Buckingham Palace stamps other than in the presentation pack. They did not have the prestige booklet either. I was told I could order them online - but that's a fat lot of use for the First Day Cover - the post office clerk just shrugged.

  4. Dear Rob K. My own local post office, a very busy but quite small post office on the outskirts of Birmingham, never stocks the prestige booklets and very often does not have new issues for sale on the so called day of issue. New stamps usually eventually appear, sometimes 2 or 3 days after the date of issue, but are rarely accompanied by miniature sheets although occasionally presentation packs are stocked there. The counter staff are always very pleasant and help if they can but I've grown to appreciate that the needs of stamp collectors are not really understood there and never will be - they're much too busy dealing with the queues of people who want to buy their car license or carry out foreign currency exchange or send their parcels to people who have just bought something from them which they have been selling on E bay.
    The central post office in Birmingham, in Pinfold Street, gives a good service to stamp collectors for new issues but, since the Post Office saw no benefit in serving collectors over a dedicated philatelic counter some years ago, collectors have to queue up to be served by helpful but often unknowledgable counter assistants who do not necessarily understand about the importance of intact perforations on a stamp and the like, alongside all the other customers with their specific and varied needs. At the modern post office counter the stamp collector's needs are relatively unimportant.
    Which leaves us with the need to resort to using the Edinburgh Bureau which seems to be relatively efficient apart from its ridiculous need to send out multiple packages containing parts of an order thus increasing the postage and packing fee the collector must pay and the fact that the bureau still doesn't use postage stamps on the mail it sends to collectors. The frustrating experiences you describe in your comment therefore have my great sympathy and make me wonder just how much longer collectors will bother with the constant flood of commemoratives Royal Mail produced particularly if they are not freely available over post office counters on the announced day of issue. It's difficult to believe that we are not all being taken for a ride.
    Many thanks for your very interesting comment.
    Best wishes.

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