Monday 31 December 2018

1360. ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ฒ 2018 Comes To An End.

  ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ฒ 2018 ends with news of philatelic items inscribed 'The Gambia' released by IGPC with a stated date of issue of 31 December 2018. The issue is made up of 2 sheetlets, one containing 4 different stamps and the other 6 different stamps, on the subject of Eagles of Africa. According to Wikipedia all the species featured on the stamps are found in The Gambia. Rated:- ***.

  ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฌ In addition to the basic stamps on the subject of Nursery rhymes which were mentioned in Blog 1315 Singapore Post also released on 17 October 2018 a pack containing a sheetlet of all 8 stamps and sold for $21.80c. The pack was designed by Andy Koh and lithographed by Southern Colour Print and perforated 13.5. Rating:- **. The sheet was depicted in Blog 1315 but this Blog gives more details about the item.

  ๐Ÿ‡ฏ๐Ÿ‡ช In Blog 1354 I illustrated the set of 6 stamps and single stamp miniature sheet due to be released by Jersey Post on 18 January 2018 on the subject of the 1970s. There will also be an accompanying miniature sheet which contains all 6 stamps released alongside the rest of the stuff. Rating:- 0.

  ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ณ The India Post new issue programme is going out with its usual end of year of bang as it struggles to release all the stamps it could have issued in the 360 other days of the year.

  28 December 2018 - Commemoration of Kakaji and Pappaji - 1 stamp. The issue commemorates the Birth centenaries of Kakaji Maharaj (2018) and HWL Poonja who was known as Pappaji (2019) who were figures who were Hindu religious figures. Rating:- ***.

  29 December 2018 - Commemoration of Maharaja Suhaldev who was a semi-legendary Indian king of the 11th century who has been heavily politicised by some Indian governments, notably the present one, as a Hindu ruler who defeated a Muslim invader. A colourful stamp. Rating:- **.

  29 December 2018 - Forts of India - 6 stamps and 1 miniature sheet containing all 6 stamps. This is an interesting set. Rating:- ****.

  30 December 2018 - 75th anniversary of the first unfurling of the flag of the India National Army, which supported the Japanese against the British during the Second World War and was led by Chandra Bose, in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands at Port Blair - 1 miniature sheet containing 3 different stamps. Rating:- **. Illustration awaited.
  Bose fled to the Japanese puppet state of Manchuria rather than stand by his own forces when their defeat by the British was imminent and planned to support The Soviet Union but was killed in an aircraft crash in Taiwan. His Indian nationalism was marred by his collaboration with Fascism. The issue coincided with a visit of the Hindu nationalist Indian prime minister, Narendra Modi, to the islands and the issue is in line, like the Maharajah Suhaldev issue, with the heavy politicisation of Indian stamps in support of Hindu nationalism since Modi came to power.

  30 December 2018 - Indian fashion through the ages - 4 stamps and 1 miniature sheet. Rating:- *****. Illustration awaited.

  31 December 2018 - Indian handicrafts - 5 stamps and 1 miniature sheet. Rating:- *****. Illustration awaited.

Sunday 30 December 2018

1359. ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง Barbados Comments On Royal Mail's Embarassment.

  ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ง Even other postal services are having a laugh at Royal Mail's expense as this Facebook comment from the Barbados postal service shows:-

  It seems that Royal Mail is an international laughing stock.

  ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฉ The postal service of Bangladesh has issued a se-tenant block of 4 stamps which are inscribed 'Visit Bangladesh 2017'. I am not sure of the date of issue but I assume that the issue has been released in the latter part of 2018 despite the date printed on the stamps. Rating:- ***.

  ๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ฟ In Blog 1351 I mentioned the New Zealand Post gold foil Chinese New Year gold foil miniature sheets which are currently on sale. There are 3 types - the first with coloured stamps housed in a Perspex stand on offer for NZ$288, the second has gold stamps and is also housed in a Perspex stand and sold for a modest (note of irony here) NZ$188 and thirdly there is the large numbered miniature sheet in a limited edition of 103 with gold stamps and housed in a numbered frame and sold for the ridiculous sum of NZ$560. Rating:- 0.

Saturday 29 December 2018

1358. ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฌ Singapore's Chinese New Year Issue.

  ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง Humble pie from Royal Mail:-

  See also Blogs 1356 and 1357.

  ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฌ Singapore Post will release its issue to commemorate the Chinese New Year, Year of the Pig, on 4 January 2019. The issue is made up of 3 gummed stamps, 1 Collectors sheet, 1 self-adhesive 1st Class Local value stamp sold in sheetlets of 10, 1 'Zodiac My Stamp folder containing a near-circular miniature sheet made up of 2 identical stamps and a sheetlet containing 14 stamps with attached labels, 1 My Stamp sheetlet containing 6 stamps (3 each of 2 different designs) with attached labels and a sheetlet of 6 stamps each showing a different animal of the Chinese zodiac. The stamps were designed by Leo Teck Chong and lithographed by Southern Colour Print and perforated 13.5 or 14.5 ($1.30c). Rating:- ***. This issue completes the 12 year cycle of Chinese New Year stamps in this particular design.

  Singapore Post also released another MyStamp folder containing 9 gummed stamps with attached labels on 23 November 2018 on the subject of the 75th anniversary of the publication of Antoine de Saint-Exupรฉry's book, The Little Prince. The issue of this sheetlet coincides with the The Little Prince: Behind The Story which is being held at the Singapore Philatelic Exhibition until 17 March 2019. Rating:- ***.

   ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ณ India Post issued 2 stamps and 1 miniature sheet on 22 December 2018 to commemorate the National Police Memorial in New Delhi. Rating:- ***.

  A single stamp was then released on 24 December 2018 to commemorate the Bicentenary of the Paika rebellion against the East India Company in 1817. The Paikas were peasant militias of the Gajapati rulers of Odisha and the rebellion spread rapidly but was put down after about 3 months. Rating:- ****.

  ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ฒ In Blog 1338 I illustrated 3 miniature sheets issued by IGPC with the name of The Gambia printed on the 4 circular stamps contained within them. It appears that there was a fourth such miniature sheet also issued and it is illustrated below. Rating:- 0.

  ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฑ Stamperija has produced a miniature sheet containing 5 stamps with the names of 5 of its client postal administrations printed on them including that of one Commonwealth territory- Sierra Leone. The product is said to have been produced in a limited edition of 900, each individually numbered, and commemorates the Centenary of the birth of Nelson Mandela with each stamp being in the style of the Pan African Postal Union omnibus series. I have not seen the Sierra Leone stamp being offered for sale as an individual item nor has the Djibouti stamp for that matter. I wonder if this will be the only source of the Sierra Leone stamp in which case it will of course not be available for ordinary postal use and therefore not worth bothering about. Rating:- 0.

Friday 28 December 2018

1357. ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง Royal Mail Will Not Commemorate US Invasion Of Dutch East Indies.

  ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง It didn't take long for Royal Mail's newly announced 2019 new issue programme to get into trouble. Nor did it take long for someone to recognise that the stamp used as a centre piece of Royal Mail's 2019 programme publicity did not show British troops taking part in the D Day landings but instead showed American troops landing in the Dutch East Indies. Oops! Naturally Royal Mail is embarrassed and this particular stamp will not after all be released during 2019.
  This is the problem with issuing too many stamps. It's to be expected that quality of design and research carried out into choosing pictures for designs is bound to become slipshod. But I'm pleased to confirm that rumours are not true that an American bald eagle is lined up to appear on the proposed Birds of Prey set instead of an illustration of a sparrowhawk which Royal Mail had intended to feature.

  ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ช I have not yet seen a detailed new issue programme from An Post, the postal service of Ireland, but have seen a report that states that the following subjects will be featured in its 2019 collection of releases:-
the Irish Coastguard,
Centenary of the first meeting of the Dรกil
Birth centenary of the novelist Iris Murdoch
Centenary of the first trans-Atlantic flight
50th anniversary of the first manned lunar landing
Irish organ donation
Rugby World Cup.
  ๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ฐ Pakistan Post issued a single stamp on 24 December 2018 to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the founding of the Ghulam Ishaq Khan Institute of Engineering Sciences and Technology. A rather design by Adil Salahuddin featuring a building and nothing else. Rating:- *. The stamp was lithographed by the National Security Printing Company in Karachi and perforated 13.

  Another issue was released by Pakistan Post on 26 December 2018 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Crescent Model Higher Secondary School in Lahore. This single stamp again depicts a building and nothing else. Rating:- *

Thursday 27 December 2018

1356. ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง Royal Mail And 2019.

  ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง Royal Mail has given some indications of the stamps it will release during 2019. The theme will be 'Best of British'.

  Issues will include 6 stamps and an accompanying miniature sheet to commemorate the Bicentenary of the births of Queen Victoria and her husband, Prince Albert. A set will 'celebrate British engineering' over the last 50 years and there will be an 11 stamp set to commemorate the 75th anniversary of D Day.
  A set of stamps using specially commissioned photographs by Tim Flach featuring Birds of Prey will be issued in April 2019 (species depicted include the Red Kite, Merlin, Sparrowhawk, Golden eagle and kestrel) and other depicted subjects will be 'Curious customs', Forests and Royal Navy Ships.
  I assume that the Birds of Prey set will be a way of addressing the 2019 Europa theme which will be 'National Birds' though as the European Robin is generally viewed as our national bird the issue can be viewed as being only tangential to the theme at the very best since the Robin is hardly a bird of prey. On the other hand perhaps the Christmas stamps will feature robins, an unusual Europa stamp would result.
  We know already that there will be a miniature sheet on 15 January to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the Royal Philatelic Society of London (see Blog 1354).
  See also Blogs 1332 and 923.

  The published programme only covers stamps which are planned for issue from April onwards:-

Sunday 23 December 2018

1355. ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ง Barbados Commemorates Royal Commonwealth Society Centenary.

  ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ง The Barbados postal service issued a set of 4 stamps and 1 miniature sheet on 20 December to commemorate the Centenary of the Royal Commonwealth Society. This is a worthwhile issue which stresses the local relevance of the subject. Rating:- ***.

  ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ณ India Post issued a single stamp on 19 December 2018 to commemorate Gulabrao Maharaj (1881-1915) who was a Hindu saint who, despite being blind, wrote 139 books on various subjects.

  ๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ฌ Papua New Guinea Post continues to release what are called Personalised stamps. They are colourful and interesting and of local interest and have locally relevant face values. Bombay Stamps is offering 39 of them for sale at present at a very reasonable price and many popular themes are covered by these stamps. Rating:- *****.
  See comments at base of this Blog.

  Addendum. 4.1.19. I have finally got around to comparing the Personalised stamps depicted below with the previous similar stamps and those depicted are new versions of the older ones. Some of the new ones have redrawn values which are obvious when they are compared with the old stamps and even when that is not the case the new ones may have noticeable shade differences in comparison with the old stamps. Conclusion:- these are new stamps to be added to a Papua New Guinea collection.