Sunday 26 February 2017

922. Prince Philip Joins The Queen On Australian Birthday Stamp.

   🇦🇺 The husband of Queen Elizabeth II, the soon-to-be 96 year old Duke of Edinburgh, will be featured alongside his wife on one of the 2 stamps to be released by Australia Post on 4 April 2017 to commemorate the Queen's 91st Birthday. The issue also acknowledges the Platinum Wedding anniversary of the royal couple which falls later this year on 20 November.
  The issue is made up of 2 gummed stamps, 1 gummed miniature sheet, 1 x $1 self-adhesive stamp from a booklet of 10 and 1 x $2.95c stamp from a booklet of five.
  Despite their advancing age the royal couple continue to fulfill their duties and this seems like a worthy commemoration particularly for the Prince who really now is of an advanced age. His appearance on this stamp goes someway to make up for the intense meanness of spirit towards The Duke which swept Australia in 2015 when he was awarded the honour of the Knighthood of the Order of Australia at the recommendation of the then Australian prime minister, Tony Abbott, as a "recognition  of his long life of service and dedication".  Australian politicians and the country's press reacted to the award of the honour in such a vicious way that Abbott was eventually forced to resign and the ungracious way that Australia had behaved to an elderly man showed the country up in a bad light. At least Prince Philip has now been treated more graciously by being featured on an Australian stamp.
  The issue was designed by Simone Sakinofsky and lithographed by RA Printing and perforated 14.5 x 14. Rating:- *****.

  Collectors will not be surprised to find that the royal birthday issue is just one of a multitude due to be released by Australia Post in the next couple of months.
  A set of 4 gummed stamps, 1 gummed miniature sheet, 2 self-adhesive $1 stamps sold in booklets of 10 (5 se-tenant pairs) and a $30.95c "Prestige booklet" on the subject of rare Australian gemstones will be issued on 30 March 2017. The issue was designed by Gary Domoney of Visua and lithographed by RA Printing and perforated 14.5 x 14. An attractive enough issue but against a background of extremely excessive issuing there seems be to no special reason for its release so I rate it:- *.

  The designs will also be used as a basis for 4 miniature sheets, one being issued on each of the 4 days of the Melbourne 2017 International Philatelic Exhibition from 30 March to 2 April 2017. Each one of these sheets will additionally be issued with postmarks applied and individually numbered in limited editions of 250. Rating:- 0.

  Australia Post will release 2 genuine commemorative stamps on 30 March 2017 which celebrate the anniversaries of 2 notable Australian artists - the 150th birth anniversary of the birth of Sir Arthur Streeton and the Centenary of the birth of Sir Sidney Nolan. The stamps were designed by Lynette Traynor and lithographed by Ego and perforated 14 x 14.5. Rating:- *****.

  Australia Post will also issue a set inscribed "Australian Antarctic Territory" on 7 March 2017 on the subject of East Antarctic deep sea creatures. The set is made up of 4 gummed stamps and 1 gummed miniature sheet which were designed by Stacey Zass and lithographed by Ego and perforated 14.5. Rating:- ***.

  The final upcoming issue from Australia Post is another important commemorative - the 4th part of the five year long series which commemorates the Centenary of the First World War. The issue is made up of 5 gummed stamps, 1 gummed miniature sheet, 5 self-adhesive $1 stamps sold in a $10 booklet of 2 x 5 different designs and a $20.95c prestige booklet which is titled "Ties to Home". The stamps feature aerial warfare during World War I, a scene from the Third Battle of Ypres, Support for the troops at home, the Sinai-Palestine Campaign and the war correspondent, Charles Bean. The issue was designed by Phil Ellet of Creative Ethos and lithographed by Ego and perforated 14.5. A well designed set that commemorates an important subject with taste, rating:- *****.

  For anyone who doesn't feel as though this is enough to satisfy there need to hand over their money to Australia Post they may also buy the upcoming "licensed products" which are special packs containing sheets of various greeting stamps with attached labels:-
  14 March 2017 - The Smurfs - pack of 20 stamps sold for $22
  14 March 2017 - Elvis Presley - pack of 25 stamps sold for $28
  14 March 2017 - Tom and Jerry - pack of 20 stamps sold for $22
  18 April 2017 - Barbie - pack of 20 stamps sold for $22. Obviously these items have nothing to do with Australian culture and everything to do with making a fast buck. Rating:- 0.

Friday 24 February 2017

921. Ladybirds From India And Orchids From Malaysia And Malta.

  🇮🇳 India Post issued a colourful and attractive set of 4 stamps and 1 miniature sheet depicting ladybirds on 23 February 2017. Rating:- ****.

  🇲🇾 Pos Malaysia issued 6 new national definitive stamps and 1 miniature sheet which depict orchids on 21 February 2017. The miniature sheet is imperforate. Rating:- *****.

  🇲🇹 Malta Post also issued floral stamps featuring orchids - the 4th part of a series - on 24 February 2017. The 3 stamps were designed by Maltapost plc from photographs by Guido Bonett and lithographed by Printex and perforated 13.5 x 14. Rating:- *****.

  🇳🇦 Nampost, the postal service of Namibia issued a miniature sheet on 17 February 2017 to commemorate the centenary of Scouting in Namibia. The stamp was designed by Helge Denker and printed in lithography. Rating:- ****.

  🇬🇾 In addition to everything else previously reported IGPC issued even more stamps inscribed "Guyana" and, mysteriously "China" additionally, to commemorate the Year of The Rooster on 8 January 2017. The inscription "China" appears at the lower left edge of the stamp and its significance is not clear. IGPC seems to depend heavily on its output from its Chinese office currently which probably tells us a lot about the worldwide new issue market of 2017. It seems you can only sell stamps with Chinese themes presently. Rating:- 0.

  🇲🇿 Stamperija's latest paraphilatelic products include a set of 15 "sheetlets", each containing 4 different "stamps", and 15 accompanying miniature sheets said to have been issued on 10 November 2016. The subject of all the products is "The most famous paintings of the whole world and all-time" and none of the featured works appear to have any direct relevance to Mozambique whose name is inscribed on the stuff. The items are all very similar and it is not worth wasting time and effort in depicting them all here but 2 of the subsets are shown below and the 15 featured artists are:- Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Edgar Degas, Mary Cassatt, Paul Cezanne, Henri Matisse, Vincent Van Gogh, Gustav Klimt, Peter Paul Rubens, Joan Miro, Leonardo Da Vinci, Michelangelo, Eugene Delacroix, Ivan Alvazovsky, Ivan Shishkin and Alphonse Mucha. Rating:- 0.

Thursday 23 February 2017

918. Pitcairn Honours Local Prominent Person; Flood Of Indian Issues Continues.

  🇵🇳 The next issue from Bounty Post, the postal service of Pitcairn Islands, will be 4 stamps in a se-tenant strip with a label in the middle separating the first 2 stamps and the last two and commemorating Rosalind Amelia Young, a Pitcairner. This is the third issue in the "Prominent Pitcairners" series and is very interesting and of local interest. I do not yet know the date of issue. Rating:- *****.

   🇮🇳 Yet another issue from India Post but this time just a single stamp of low face value. The stamp commemorates the Bicentenary of the Poona Horse Regiment of the Indian Army. The stamp was issued on 11 February 2017. Rating:- ****.

  This was followed by another single stamp issue which commemorated the centenary of Ramjas College, one of the colleges of the University of Delhi. The stamp was released on 13 February 2017. This is yet another one of those type of designs which are so popular with designers of India Post stamps - a dull photograph of a rather drab-looking building. Rating:- *.

  Nor has India Post failed to find additional ways to justify more stamp issues. Hence on 10 February 2017 2 "My stamps" were released in sheetlets of 12 (6 of each design) on the subject of Surajkund Mela. The sheetlets were sold at considerably higher prices than the face value justified. Pleasingly colourful stamps I suppose but lost against the background of the current flood of Indian stamp issues. Rating:- 0.

  Then on 14 February 2017 another "My Stamp" was issued - this time a single stamp featuring a rose (presumably to fit in with St. Valentine's Day) - again in sheetlets of twelve and sold at considerably more than face value. This item has the additional gimmick of having a rose scent attached to it. Ho hum. Rating:- 0.

  🇧🇹 Bhutan Post has released its Lunar new year set for the Year of the Rooster. In fact the issue reveals that this is the "Fire female bird Year" and is made up of a sheetlet of 12 different stamps which depict the 12 animals of the Lunar zodiac and a miniature sheet. The latter depicts a magnificent cockerel which is rather odd as this is the "Female bird Year" but this is still an interesting issue of local relevance. I do not yet know the date of issue. Rating:- ***.