Friday 28 June 2019

1462. ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Bears Of Canada.

  ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Canada Post will issue a set of 4 self-adhesive stamps sold in booklets of 8 (2 x 4 different designs) and 1 miniature sheet on 24 July 2019 on the subject of Bears. The stamps depict 4 striking and wonderful face-on portraits of the American black bear, the Kermode bear, the Grizzly bear and the Polar bear and were designed by Andrew Perro. If a postal administration must issue thematic stamps then this is the way to do it (compare this excellent issue with the upcoming Royal Mail ‘Curious customs’ which is confusing and ugly). Rating:- *****.

  ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง Here now are much better quality illustrations of the upcoming set of 8 stamps on the subject of ‘Curious customs’ to be released by Royal Mail on 9 July 2019. The issue was designed by NB Studio   using illustrations by the Dunfermline-born commercial designer, print maker and illustrator Jonny Hannah. The issue was lithographed by International Security Printers and is perforated 14 x 14.5.
  While the subject of the issue is interesting and worthwhile the designs have proved to be highly controversial - they may make colourful posters and prints for those with a taste for such a style but they make wholly unsatisfactory stamps seeming as they do to be the work of a schoolchild and not at all explanatory of what the traditional or otherwise ‘curious customs’ involve. The designs are typical of what results when a group of mutually admiring professionals get together on a committee and resolve to foist art, architecture, theatre and so on on a public which the professionals judge to need their own self-regarding superior taste inflicted on them.
  Rating:- 0.

Thursday 27 June 2019

1461. ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Canada Post Commemorates Moon Landing.

  ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Canada Post released a se-tenant pair of self-adhesive stamps issued in booklets of 10 (5 x 2 different designs) and 1 miniature sheet containing 6 stamps (3 x 2 of the same designs) on 27 June 2019 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the first manned lunar landing. Rating:- ***.

    ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ฒ The Isle Of Man Post Office will issue a set of 6 stamps on 4 July 2019 on the subject of ‘Greetings in Manx’ which marks the 120th anniversary of the Manx Language Society and the International Year Of Indigenous Languages. The issue is a collaboration between Culture Vannin, a partner organisation of the International Year, and the Manx artist, Mary Cousins. The designs feature ‘Manx mice’ around and about various Manx scenes greeting each other in Manx Gaelic.
  The stamps using Mary Cousins’ illustrations were designed by EJC Design and lithographed by Lowe Martin and perforated 13. A light-hearted issue but the Manx Postal Service has managed to come up with an event and a reasonably worthwhile anniversary to justify the release of these stamps. Rating:- ***.

   ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ฌ Although the island of Guernsey is geographically nowhere near Wales Guernsey Post still feels it necessary to issue a miniature sheet to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the investiture of Prince Charles as the Prince Of Wales. The item will be released on 24 July 2019 and was designed by The Potting Shed and lithographed by B Post. Rating:- 0. 

Tuesday 25 June 2019

1460. ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ป๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ญ Filling A Few Gaps.

๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ป After several years of patient waiting I have finally managed to obtain the 15MVR Turtle stamp for use on tourists’ postcards issued by Maldives Post in, I think, 2012 which turned up on piece in some kiloware as these stamps usually do. The kiloware also included the Dolphin postcard stamp issued at the same time though I did have it in my collection previously on an entire postcard. 
  There’s little more pleasing than finally tracking down a stamp long missing from one’s collection.

  ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ญ It has also been a pleasing time for me because I managed to track down a couple of surcharges from Ghana dating back I think to the 2007 - 9 period. These again turned up in some kiloware and are stamps from the Christmas set originally issued on 19 December 1988 and are the 60c ‘Christ child’ value of that set with a GHc1 surcharge in black and the 80c ‘Virgin and Child with star’ stamp also with a GHc1 surcharge in black. These surcharges turn up from time to time and gradually the empty spaces in my Ghana collection are gradually being filled.
  As I wrote in Blog 1451 I have recently had some luck in tracking down some long missing hard-to-get relatively recent issues including another from Ghana (a fourth stamp towards completing the set of 5 issued in 2016 which called for peaceful elections in the country) and the set of 4 miniature sheets issued by St Kitts in 2014 (Blog 1447) to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Taiwan and St Kitts Nevis.
  Everything turns up eventually.

  ๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ฎ The postal service of Kiribati intends to issue 4 stamps and 1 miniature sheet on 1 July 2019 to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the country’s achievement of Independence. The stamps will Birds.

  In this era of excessive numbers of stamp issues it might be an attractive idea to collect only the stamps of the territories which still remain British territories. You could say the collection would consist of the issues of what remains of the British Empire but you would undoubtedly be described as an ‘imperialist’ by doing so. What is nice about the idea is that you would have stamps from territories in Europe, the Pacific, the Atlantic (north and south), the Caribbean, the Antarctic and the Indian Ocean - territories which as a group provide a wide range of climates, cultures, wildlife, scenery and history all bound together by their close ties to Britain.
  How interesting it is too to see how the postal administrations differ in their approach to the present day new issue crisis where it’s hard to interest anyone in buying new issues and so an administration either issues vast amounts of philatelic products in the hope of finding something among them that will be sellable to collectors or non-collectors or effectively gives up producing new stamps because it’s just not financially worthwhile.
  There’s a very real difference between the islands off the British Isles (the Crown Territories) and the Overseas Territories although Gibraltar’s approach to new issuing is much closer to the offshore islands than the Overseas Territories. The Crown Dependencies (and Gibraltar) continue to flood the market with new philatelic products while the Overseas territories issue barely any stamps at all. Perhaps it would be a good idea to drop the Crown Dependencies from the collection and concentrate on the very worthwhile pursuit of building up a collection of ‘modern British Empire’ stamps from the remaining Overseas Dependeies. Such a collection would be relatively inexpensive but pleasingly interesting.

   Crown Dependencies -

   ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ฌ Guernsey - 7 issues from 22 January to 24 July 2019 (plus gold foil miniature sheets, ordinary miniature sheets and Post and Go stamps)
         Guernsey Dependencies - Alderney - 2 issues each of 6 stamps and 1 miniature sheet (13/2/19 and 28/5/19)
   ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ฒ Isle Of Man - 10 issues from 22 January to 1 July 2019 (plus self-adhesive varieties, Post and Go stamps, miniature sheets, Prestige booklets, Collectors sheets et al)
   ๐Ÿ‡ฏ๐Ÿ‡ช Jersey - 11 issues from 4 January to 20 July 2019 (plus Post and Go stamps, miniature sheets and Collectors sheets).

  Overseas Territories -

   ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง Akrotiri And Dhekelia - no stamps. Postal service supplied by British Forces Postal Service, perhaps a Post and Go kiosk could be installed there with a site identifying inscription. That would be fun.
   ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ฎ Anguilla - no stamps since 2 August 2016
   ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฒ Bermuda - 2 sets each of 4 stamps (21/2/19 and 30/5/19)
   ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง British Antarctic Territory - no stamps since 4 November 2018
   ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ด British Indian Ocean Territory - no stamps since 21 November 2018
   ๐Ÿ‡ป๐Ÿ‡ฌ British Virgin Islands - no stamps since 13 September 2018
   ๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡พ Cayman Islands - no stamps since 23 November 2018
   ๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ฐ Falkland Islands - 2 sets each of 4 stamps (4/3/19 and 6/6/19
  ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ฎ Gibraltar - 6 issues so far from 30 January to 25 April 2019. No new Post and Go stamps.
  ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ธ Montserrat - no stamps since 15 December 2018
  ๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ณ Pitcairn Islands - 3 issues (4 stamps (26/2/19), 1 min sheet (30/4/19) and 3 stamps 14/6/19)
  ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ญ St Helena - no stamps since 17 September 2018
        St Helena Dependencies - Ascension Island - 1 set of 4 stamps (6/6/19)
                                                    Tristan Da Cunha - 3 sets each of 4 stamps (11/2/19, 10/4/19 and 19/6/19)
  ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ธ South Georgia And The South Sandwich Islands - 1 set of 4 stamps (10/5/19)
  ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡จ Turks And Caicos Islands - no stamps issued since 7 January 2015

Friday 21 June 2019

1459. ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ท Northern Cyprus Issues Its Europa Stamps.

   ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ท The postal service of the Turkish Republic Of Northern Cyprus issued a se-tenant pair of stamps on 20 June 2019 as its contribution to the 2019 Europa omnibus, the theme of which is ‘National Birds’. The stamps were designed by GK Sรถnmezer and digitally printed by Bolan Dijital Baski Ltd. A fine pair if stamps. Rating:- ****.

 ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ป By the time that Maldives rejoins The Commonwealth next year (see Blog 1454) I do hope that its postal service will have given up allowing Stamperija to issue such appalling rubbish as the stuff illustrated below which is being offered for sale on internet auction sites this week. It is almost as awful as the recent Royal Mail ‘Marvel Comics’ and upcoming ‘Curious Customs’ issues:-

   ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡พ Pos Malaysia issued a set of 3 stamps and 1 miniature sheet on 19 June 2019 on the subject of Sour Fruits. The attractive if rather inconsequential issue was designed by KY Lim of Reign Associates. Rating:- ***.

 ๐Ÿ‡ฟ๐Ÿ‡ฆ The South African Post Office has issued a diamond-shaped miniature sheet on the subject of, not surprisingly, Famous South African Diamonds. The sheet contains 10 different stamps each depicting a different notable diamond. The miniature sheet is self-adhesive. The date of issue was 19 June 2019. Rating:- *****.

Wednesday 19 June 2019

1458. ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡บ Australia Post Excessive Issuing Continues.

  ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡บ Vast numbers of new philatelic products are to be issued by Australia Post in the coming 2 months. They are all thematic subjects with little reason to be placed in a new issue programme at this time apart from the hope that the theme will attract someone sufficiently to persuade them to hand over money to Australia Post. The one notable anniversary to be commemorated is related to the achievements of the USA rather than Australia.
  A set of 3 gummed stamps will be released on the 3 July 2019 on the subject of ‘Freshwater crayfish’. As far as I can see there are no accompanying self-adhesive stamps with this issue. If only that were always the case. The stamps were designed by Roger Swainston and Simone Sakinofsky and lithographed by RA Printing and perforated 14 x 14.5. An attractive enough issue but wholly unnecessary. Rating:- *.

   ๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ซ An issue inscribed ‘Norfolk Island Australia’ on the subject of Philip Island Landscapes will be released on 9 July 2019 and is made up of 2 gummed stamps and 1 miniature sheet. Designed by Stacey Zass of Page12 design using photographs by Ian Rolfe and lithographed by RA Printing and perforated 14 x 14.5. Rating:- ***.

  16 July 2019 - 50th anniversary of the first manned lunar landing - 4 gummed and 4 self-adhesive stamps from coils and 4 self-adhesive stamps from coils and 4 self-adhesive stamps (issued in 4 Booklets each containing 10 of each design) and 1 gummed miniature sheet. Designed by Gary Domoney of VISUA and lithographed by EGO and perforated 14.5 x 14. Rating:- 0.

  1 August 2019 - Stamp Collecting Week - Gardening - 5 gummed stamps and 4 self-adhesive stamps from $10 Booklets (10 x $1) and $20 Booklets (10 x $2) and 1 miniature sheet containing 5 different stamps. Designed by Andrew Hopgood and Jo Murรฉ and lithographed by EGO and perforated 14 x 14.5. Rating:- *.

13 August 2019 - Bush citrus fruit - 3 gummed and 3 self-adhesive coil stamps and 1 gummed miniature sheet. Designed by Anita Xhafer and Jo Murรฉ and lithographed by EGO or Multi Color Corp. Vic on the self-adhesive coil stamps and perforated 14 x 14.5. Rating:- *.

  ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡บ Issue inscribed ‘Australian Antarctic Territory’ - 20 August 2019 - ‘Mapping the Australian Antarctic Territory’ - 4 stamps and 1 miniature sheet. Designed by Lisa Christensen of Three Branches Design and lithographed by EGO and perforated 14.5. Rating:- ***.

  ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฝ Issue inscribed ‘Christmas Island Australia’ - 27 August 2019 - 19th century explorers in Christmas Island- 2 stamps and 1 miniature sheet. Designed by Simone Sakinofsky and lithographed by RA Printing and perforated 14 x 14.5. Rating:- ***.

   Australia Post uses every possible opportunity to extract cash from collectors and so it finds it necessary to release no less than FIVE miniature sheets to mark its participation in the Singpex 2019 International Stamp Exhibition to be held from 31 July to 4 August 2019. The first four are perforated while the fifth is imperforate which combines all 4 stamps designs.

 Among other products due for issue from Australia Post are 2 of the very tiresome stamp packs sold for $23 each containing stamps with attached labels. The first is titled Snoopy Journey To Deep Space in which the labels are attached to $1 ‘Moon landing’ stamps and the second is a packing titled 30 Years of Gardening Australia containing 2 panes of Greetings stamps. Rating:- 0.

  Australia Post will also issue 18 sheetlet packs, each containing panes of 15 Map of Australia greetings stamps with attached labels and sold for $23 each on the subject of Australian football season teams. Clearly any Australian football enthusiast keen to buy a sheet for every team will face a total bill of $235 dollars. Rating:- 0.