New GB Machins have to be collected on paper if used

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norvic
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New GB Machins have to be collected on paper if used

Post by norvic »

[If I've already mentioned this, apologies - I can't find it using the search facilities]

From 17 February 2009 Royal Mail will issue definitive stamps with security features designed to prevent reuse.

The stamps will have 4 semi-circular slits similar to some used on retail price tickets, and will also have an irridescent print on the dark area around the Queen's head.

Image

Latest reports added the 50p & £1 values to the basic rate stamps, which will all be printed in counter sheets of 50 instead of 200, and be self-adhesive.

So there are 6 basic stamps, but many variations
1st class gold
2nd class blue
1st class gold Large letter
2nd class blue Large letter
50p light grey
£1 ruby.


The latest information release only refers to self-adhesive but earlier the stamp rolls were stated to be conventionally gummed.

The full list is as follows:
Sheet stamps by De La Rue
1st & 2nd (letter) in counter sheets of 50
1st & 2nd (Large letter) in counter sheets of 50?
50p & £1 in counter sheets of 50

Business Sheet stamps by De La Rue[? the trial B/S I saw were Walsall printed]
100 x 1st
100 x 2nd
50 x 1st Large
50 x 2nd Large

Retail books by Walsall Security Printers (probably conventional gum, not SA
6 x 1st
12 x 1st
12 x 2nd
4 x 1st Large
4 x 2nd Large

Stamp rolls (printer not stated)
500 x 2nd
500 x 1st
1000 x 2nd
1000 x 1st

Standard First Day Envelopes and a Presentation Pack will also be available.

When questioned whether the stamps could be soaked as usual by collectors Royal Mail stated that
"Fraudulent use of used stamps costs Royal Mail a considerable amount every year. .... The features are designed to prevent any stamps from removal."

So that's a NO then! Initial reports on the newly issued Christmas stamps (which were also self-adhesive by De La Rue) suggests that these may also be difficult to soak. As Christmas stamps are a close second to Machins in eBay lists of 'unfranked no gum' stamps offered (for re-use), this would be a logical move.
Ian Billings - Norvic Philatelics - clearing Machins stock before Royal Mail burn them all, singles, booklets, booklet panes, regionals - lists here: or email/DM your general needs and I'll let you know whether it's worth sending a wants list.
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Post by Jack »

Another reason to hate machins...
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Post by norvic »

Nice to see a reasoned discussion from the Essex Boy :roll:
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Post by Jack »

I should start a poll on machins; I hate them as (sorry for the repeats...)

1) too many of them
2) the only stamps used by 'normal people' as they buy them in the shops so it stops other stamps coming through my door
3) monochrome
4) the stamp has been around for too long
5) does not represent the current image of the queen
6) puts people off collecting stamps as that's all they get through the door
7) would accept them as 'make up values' but cant we at least have ' country definitives' or short run commemoratives marketed through the local shops to incrase variety on our post so we get a bit of variety?
8) reminds me that the only live people (in essence) allowed on UK stamps are the royals (we can have teams); I'd prefer a better group of role models--say, all UK citizens who have won a Nobel prize. Or a multi-gold medal Olympics winner (I do think Oz has overdone it a bit..)... Again, trying to get others interested in the little bits of paper they may occasionally see...
9) I still hate them, I'm trying to make ten... ( I liked the Machin Mini sheet showing Arnold Machin (see one of my other posts) , but I don't think that's what we mean by the term machin...
10) And they are just boring to look at. How many billion have been printed??
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Post by Greg Ioannou »

I love them. They are really complex, which means that if you know what you're doing there is always the possibility of finding a major rarity selling cheaply. They are a treasure hunter's dream.

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Post by norvic »

They have contributed a lot to philately but put off a lot of stamp collectors.

The preceding remark is not intended as a criticism of anybody's approach or attitude to Machins, BTW.

We could do a lot worse, but we could do a lot better. We DO have non-Machin stamps in booklets sold at supermarkets and garages, Greetings as well as Christmas (and this year's Ice Creams). We do have country definitives sold at post offices.

And now, of course, the Machin head is on the self-service machines, which will be installed in some shops which replace post offices. It's alleged that there will be 5 in the vicinity of Ludgate Circus EC, when that closes. I presume the Post and Go machine installed there when closure was already announced is just to get customers used to it.
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Post by OttawaMike »

The only modern issue that holds any interest for me. These are real stamps, not pretty labels designed to raise money for governments.
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Post by Jack »

I knew I should have started a thread on this (although I know I'd lose...).

Further idea; love to do a poll on non-philatelists asking the reactions to a range of stamps (obviously including machins). And one of philatelists asking them the same. Then breaking down the answers by age....
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Post by norvic »

OttawaMike

What do you think of the latest variation?

Image

(I do have these mint and on cover, and will be able to supply them, but not until I have had time to canvass my regular customers - probably starting next week.)
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Post by Jack »

Actually I'd love to have one set on cover; they are slightly different (and my dad wants it as well). My complaint is with the normal 1st and 2nd class stamps; they are what I think should be banned. (I have said the other rates are fine as they ahve a role or at least different).
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Post by Jack »

' These are real stamps, not pretty labels designed to raise money for governments.'

If you use the pretty labels they are just as valid for the purpose as machins, of course. And that's what I do. As well, stamp collectors have to start somewhere; they may become philatelists. If they only have 1st and 2nd class machins through the door then there will be no stamp collectors at all and obviously no philatelists.
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Post by OttawaMike »

Then why has stamp collecting declined over the last several decades as the pretty labels proliferated? :wink:

It seems that the vast number of commemorative issues has done far more harm than good to the hobby.
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Post by Jack »

Alternatively because email has meant far fewer letters / personal mail has been written. I forget the official figures but actual 'snail' mail has dropped hugely in the last five years. The only mail I get, other than from philatelists, has machin 1st and 2nd, and even they are now rare. The normal is meter or prepaid envelopes. As such, what motivation does anyone have to start collecting when all they see are the same two stamps?
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Post by Jack »

And even the business mail is now lessening; so much of it is also done through email.

I would also add that if numbers of collectors are lessening it is also because there is an enormous increase in other recreational activities.
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Post by Greg Ioannou »

norvic wrote:OttawaMike

What do you think of the latest variation?

Image

(I do have these mint and on cover, and will be able to supply them, but not until I have had time to canvass my regular customers - probably starting next week.)
That's sort of pushing the envelope, eh? Does each one have a different number? Will it be like banknotes, where ones with cutsie numbers (X1234567 and so on) command a premium?

Are we supposed to collect all the possible numbers? That might be a challenge!

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Post by norvic »

The number at the left is the number of the PO Branch (in this case Bristol); certainly there are some attempts to collect as many different as possible, especially if the branch is due for closure - Ludgate Circus (024003) in London being just one such.

As for the others see here http://postagelabelsuk.com/?p=109
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Post by The Pom »

Jack wrote: 1) too many of them
2) the only stamps used by 'normal people' as they buy them in the shops so it stops other stamps coming through my door
3) monochrome
4) the stamp has been around for too long
5) does not represent the current image of the King
6) puts people off collecting stamps as that's all they get through the door
7) would accept them as 'make up values' but cant we at least have ' country definitives' or short run commemoratives marketed through the local shops to incrase variety on our post so we get a bit of variety?
8 ) reminds me that the only live people (in essence) allowed on UK stamps are the royals (we can have teams); I'd prefer a better group of role models--say, all UK citizens who have won a Nobel prize. Or a multi-gold medal Olympics winner (I do think Oz has overdone it a bit..)... Again, trying to get others interested in the little bits of paper they may occasionally see...
9) I still hate them, I'm trying to make ten... ( I liked the Machin Mini sheet showing Arnold Machin (see one of my other posts) , but I don't think that's what we mean by the term machin...
10) And they are just boring to look at. How many billion have been printed??
No doubt the same was being said about this design a few years back....

Image
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Post by David Smitham »

Machins have been around for 40+ years and prior to 1967 there were the Wildings. Whilst these were around for about 15 years before being replaced by the smashing Machins there are many variations of these as one will see from the SG specialised catalogue.

During the 1980s my collecting tastes began to change because there were too many commemoratives being issued then. I turned towards the Machin and Wilding stamps for something different to collect. This included the likes of Post Office Training School stamps - a variation of the original stamp.

By the time I got stuck into the different types of phosphors that had been applied to the Wildings I was starting to become more interested in the reasons behind the applications of initially graphite lines and later phosphor bands applied to stamps.

From these questions I eventually started a new collection which became my national exhibition level gold medal winning Letter Coding exhibit.

A round about way admittedly of arriving somewhere different but this was because I had lost interest in commemoratives and so I turned to British definitives.

Far from it for me to suggest that this approach will lead to modern day collectors of similar material from the plethora of Machins but it is possible.

Also,as time goes by more Machins are issued. This alone may result in someone collecting them for their own sake.

The design of the Machin is an elegant simplicity and whilst I agree that the design does not accurately reflect the current Queen's appearance neither does the Queen's silhouette. This image has been frequently used on commemorative stamps for years yet no one complains about that not being a true likeness of the Queen!

Perhaps the next change will come about when Charley Farley takes over?

I wonder just how many collectors will give up collecting Machins and other stamps when this reign comes to an end?
Perhaps the real reason behind the continuation of the Machin stamp design is that Royal Mail is scared of how many collectors - read income - it will loose when the current attractive Machin stamp design is replaced? Hence they continue using it.
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What do you think of them

Post by Raz »

The 100g - First class would look great on the 100gram packages of Marihuana that the local police usually use to supplement their Christmas bonuses. The government would get their tax revenue as well. :twisted: :roll:
Surfing stamps and covers, KED VIII, and Newfoundland.
Europa and Canada and any comic related stamps.
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Post by norvic »

David Smitham wrote:Machins have been around for 40+ years and prior to 1967 there were the Wildings.
Another way of collecting these is to collect them on cover, not FDC, but ordinary cover doing their job of carrying the mail. Some values must be extremely difficult to find. And I'll start another thread asking about two specific unusual usages that I know of!
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Post by ozstamps »

Image
Ian I am doing my next 'Stamp News' column right now.

These look like an interesting thing to add.

Can you please email me the highest rez scan of these that you have to glen(at)glenstephens.com

And especially any with denominations on them you might have?

Also the horiz label above do you have a hi rez scan of that please?

I'll even give you a plug .... we may even get a logo on your homepage then. ;)

Glen
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Post by mrboggler »

It does not matter what New System they bring in people will still reuse the stamps... :cry:

i.e. You have just finished doing your Christmas Card list.and get a Phone call from Uncle Jim saying that he has just found out Auntie Dottie in Australia Has Died.....so she is suddenly crossed off the Xmas Card List...unfortunatly you have just stuck on a 1.20 Pound stamp on the envelope.. are you just going to toss it out,,, :?: no way ,,,,,so you will now cut the stamp off and restick it on another envelope.either with sticky tape or Glue.
And there are dozens of situations like that,where the stamp has not been through the mail system.and will be reused.by just cutting it off the envelope and sticking it straight on a envelope,without soaking off,
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Post by OttawaMike »

norvic wrote:OttawaMike

What do you think of the latest variation?

Image

(I do have these mint and on cover, and will be able to supply them, but not until I have had time to canvass my regular customers - probably starting next week.)

Not particularly attractive - I really detest the peel & stick things. But once you've started on Machins, you've gotta finish. Fortunately, there are relatively few of this kind of item in the series. I suspect there are about a million Machin collectors just waiting for Her Majesty to kick so they can have it complete.
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Post by fromdownunder »

If, like modern USA emissions, they cannot be soaked, and have to be "displayed" on paper it will just add another country to my "no longer interested" list.

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Post by gavin-h »

OttawaMike wrote:Then why has stamp collecting declined over the last several decades as the pretty labels proliferated? :wink:
Is it that stamps are unattractive to the youth of today because they can't be drunk, smoked, sniffed, injected or copulated with :lol:
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Post by ozstamps »

As usual PO's do not have a clue.

Sure this will split if PEELED off, but if soaked off how will that stop re-use?


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Post by The Pom »

ozstamps wrote:As usual PO's do not have a clue.

Sure this will split if PEELED off, but if soaked off how will that stop re-use?


Glen
Maybe they're not using soluble glue?
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Post by David Smitham »

If the adhesive is a hydrocarbon compound then there will be a solvent of some kind that will be able to dissolve the adhesive. However, it may also affect the printing ink as well as one's health!

Many years ago I tried to remove backing paper from various Tongan self adhesive stamps. Quickly I found out that water had no effect and that was why folks left the stamps on piece. Then I tried using some solvents that we had in our garage. My dad was an industrial chemist and we had more than the likes of commonly found meths and turps in our garage.

After using strong nasty stuff - like toluene - I was successful but once the paper was removed the adhesive was still sticky and messy. Perhaps a longer immersion time would have finally resolved the problem? The main thing that I learned was that self adhesive gum can be very difficult to remove and required strong solvents that could be harmful to one's health to do it.

Whilst I managed to do the job with toluene back in the 1980s I dare say that most households do not have ready access to such solvents, and thus it would be almost impossible to remove self adhesive stamps with non aqueous adhesive from paper for most folks.

Today some 20+ years after I was trying to remove Tongan self adhesive stamps from paper for all I know even stronger hydrocarbon adhesives are used with stamps - thus they are probably even harder to remove from paper using solvents.
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Post by Jack »

My wife and I had a fun day on Saturday and went for a tour of Kent; this meant we also went to Maidstone which has one of these 'pay and go' machines. They are very easy to use. Anyway we had fun using it. And we also thought of you.

Now, I know in one way I am perhaps on the wrong thread as this could be on the buy / sell line but I have a spare 5 'Machin Worldwide up to 20 g' labels; see above for what I mean. The rest are ours...

But I thought it more sensible to mention this offer here. I am offering to put one of these labels on a small cover with cardboard insert and post it to you worldwide (no UK people allowed, sorry-unless your postal address is a Hebridean Island or Shetland / Orkneys). I am (obviously) not responsible for what cancels your cover gets / doesn't get but it may well be a 'Chelmsford' machine cancel-these cancels are currently trials as really it should be 'South East Anglia' and with a different font but I can't promise anything. It's also worth noting that a Machin 'label' posted in Essex will be unusual as no 'pay and go' exists in Essex. And I can't see many others doing it- so, yes, very philatelic.

Cost? You owe me one 'interesting' philatelic cover from where you live in return. What's 'interesting' is up to you. Or-as its my speciality-an Arabian Gulf States cover (Bahrain, UAE, Qatar, Oman, Kuwait). Your choice.

One cover per person for obvious reasons. So, just respond on this thread 'Yes please' and either email me directly or I'll email you.

To restate-one per person, basically non-UK only.
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Post by PhotoJim »

Sounds good to me. I'd have to come up with something interesting and Canadian for you. I'm sure I can come up with something.
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Post by Jack »

First one booked; four to go.
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Post by PhotoJim »

I'm willing to get that the Royal Mail has changed the adhesive.

I've been a big fan of Canada Post's self-adhesive issues. They have a layer of that tacky self-adhesive, but between it and the stamp is a layer of PVA gum. When moistened, it separates the self-adhesive away from the stamp and the stamp floats free, looking a lot like a traditional stamp (but with wacky or no perforations of course :) ).

Canada Post clearly does that for the benefit of collectors; I see no point to it if not to allow people to soak the stamps off the envelopes.
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Post by norvic »

The Pom wrote:
ozstamps wrote:As usual PO's do not have a clue.
Sure this will split if PEELED off, but if soaked off how will that stop re-use?
Glen
Maybe they're not using soluble glue?
Exactly - Royal Mail have indicated that the stamps will not be soakable. First impressions of the recently issued Christmas stamps suggest that there may be some problem with these also. Remember, we are talking about self-adhesive/self-stick/pressure-sensitive-adhesive here (delete according to which country you aren't in!).

It is well known that the water-soluble-layer (between adhesive and paper) has been eliminated on many US stamps and if RM has specified that in the contract then they won't be soakable. It's not rocket science (it's chemistry, I think!)
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Post by norvic »

Jack wrote:It's also worth noting that a Machin 'label' posted in Essex will be unusual as no 'pay and go' exists in Essex. And I can't see many others doing it- so, yes, very philatelic.
There aren't any in Norfolk either but I'm using Ludgate Circus ones (inland, Europe or World) in the postage to some of my customers; they either get the village cds or the underinked old-style Norwich machine cancel.
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Post by Jack »

My offer is now closed; all spoken for.
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Post by GlenStephens »

Apart from the USA .. and soon the UK .. any other country using the NON soluble adhesive?

Glen
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Post by PennyBlack1840 »

These security enhanced machins ahve been mooted for quite some time and there issue has been well heralded. Reasons for introduction are well understood.

Initial response from collectors re the 'post and go' labels from machines is that they are relatively disinterested.

peter
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Post by Jack »

I suspect 'Post and go' may well quickly disappear if it's left to the stamp collectors BUT accountants rule; does one 'Post and go' machine equal one less person serving at the PO? Can a 'post and go' machine work in a supermarket? Given that traditional mail is dying these machines may mean fewer local POs are needed...

I suspect Postal Historians may be more interested in these items, especially early covers posted in the 'wrong' county or perhaps used with normal stamps to make up postage etc..

Also, when I was in Maidstone I did notice one businessman posting his mail solely using them (not least due to the queue to get normal stamps). So commercial use is possible.
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Post by norvic »

PennyBlack1840 wrote: Initial response from collectors re the 'post and go' labels from machines is that they are relatively disinterested.
peter
When the Bristol machines went live dealer collectors flew in from German and Spain. There is massive interest in ATM labels in other countries, and I think there will be demand from Machin collectors for these.

I've had enquiries from the USA and Holland.
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Post by norvic »

Jack wrote:I suspect 'Post and go' may well quickly disappear if it's left to the stamp collectors BUT accountants rule; does one 'Post and go' machine equal one less person serving at the PO? Can a 'post and go' machine work in a supermarket? Given that traditional mail is dying these machines may mean fewer local POs are needed...

Also, when I was in Maidstone I did notice one businessman posting his mail solely using them (not least due to the queue to get normal stamps). So commercial use is possible.
I understand that the point of installing one of these machines in the soon-to-close Ludgate Circus branch is precisely to get people used to using them - queues are often out of the door (so why close it? I suspect to free up some prime real estate!)

Word on Day 1 was that it was the intention to install more around the area in any other suitable location. How the money is removed and the machines' supplies maintained I've no idea. It would be nice to think that the technology sent a message to a central London point when replenishment was necessary. There will, after all, be a comms line to deal with debit/credit card payments.
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Post by norvic »

And there's more

Royal Mail's Philatelic Bulletin provides more information on these new stamps and announces the range is extended to include the high values - £1.50, £2, £3, and £5.

Two official FDCs will be produced, and two presentation packs. I wonder why they weren't able to tell us this at the Trade briefing on 18 September....?
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Post by Blackpepper »

GlenStephens wrote:Apart from the USA .. and soon the UK .. any other country using the NON soluble adhesive?

Glen
NZ is certainly not changing any time soon.

It is a crock that worldwide governments are happy to have stamp collectors buying and never using stamps for postage - many multi millions of dollars I would assume - yet they go out of their way to stop a very small number of stamps being re-used.
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Post by norvic »

Blackpepper wrote:NZ is certainly not changing any time soon.

It is a crock that worldwide governments are happy to have stamp collectors buying and never using stamps for postage - many multi millions of dollars I would assume - yet they go out of their way to stop a very small number of stamps being re-used.
The two situations are not mutually exclusive, as Royal Mail is demonstrating. If the stamps aren't used they don't need security slits.

Incidentally 261 lots on eBay.co.uk for GB unfranked at present - http://tinyurl.com/6hxjaj - and typically selling for 70% of face or more.
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Post by GlenStephens »

norvic wrote:And there's more

Royal Mail's Philatelic Bulletin provides more information on these new stamps and announces the range is extended to include the high values - £1.50, £2, £3, and £5.
Do you mean of the slitted stamps or the labels?
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Post by fromdownunder »

GlenStephens wrote:Apart from the USA .. and soon the UK .. any other country using the NON soluble adhesive?

Glen
Italian priority delivery stamps ("real" stamps, not labels) will either not come off the paper at all, or will come off in seconds with the gum remaining on the stamp in all it's virginal glory.

Spanish machine label stamps (some with quite pleasant designs) not only have non soluble gum, they also have fugitive ink, so soaking them leaves pretty much one blank "stamp" piece of paper on another blank piece of paper.

*sigh* I miss the good old days. And that was only last year. (not really - just seems like it )

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Post by norvic »

GlenStephens wrote:
norvic wrote:And there's more

Royal Mail's Philatelic Bulletin provides more information on these new stamps and announces the range is extended to include the high values - £1.50, £2, £3, and £5.
Do you mean of the slitted stamps or the labels?
.
Stamps, as stated. There are no labels with these values.
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Post by michaelatcddstamps »

interesting thread.. Thanks Ian, I've been collecting "on paper" so to speak, for over a year now.. well GB commemoratives in particular, as it shows proof of real postal use, which some claim is relevant. And, might I add, because I doubt there are that many modern / recent commemoratives - full sets of course - actually postal used - please tell me I am wrong :-)

takes up more space in my albums.. but hey I buy them 10 at a time from Glen so he is happy ... hee hee

Best wishes.. Michael
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Post by PennyBlack1840 »

Ian

At the trade briefing it was made clear that these intiial two which were discussed were just the start and that potentially over time all machin values were to be altered in this way. Given that the high values represent the greatest financial loss if re-used no surprise they are being attacked first, plus its another bonanza income for the Philatelic Bureau. (And I was at the briefing)

Strange thing is that the latest already issued (current) Machin high values are actually very elusive in fine used condition because virtually all Post Offices are not holding them preferring to use their labels.

I stand by what I said regarding the pay and go labels - little or no interest from collectors, they will not be sought after in my view, mainly because they will be unlikely to get a catalogue lsiting, even if they do cannot see this changing - look at the level of interest in the FRAMA labels of years ago. Sure you may have some interest from a few other countries but Stamp Collectors prefer stamps not labels in my experience.

Peter[/quote]
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Post by norvic »

I was at the September trade breifing as well. Whilst it was difficult to make accurate notes of

(a) somebody speaking
(b) proofs being passed around
(c) what was on the screen

... I don't recall them mentioning that there would be more - although you may well be right.

The sample copy of the 1st class gold was printed in March 08 - if they really were planning these HVs and two FDCs and two presentation packs then they should have said so in September. I can't believe that the decision has been made since.

I wouldn't say they were 'well heralded' although given the volume of eBay sales of uncancelled stamps it is no surprise.

I have been referring eBay listings for those, and for copyright infringements and sales of Sub-PO handstamp sets to them on and off for several years. I'm not at all surprised that something has been done.

I expect next year to find that the Christmas stamps have the same features, at least the 2nd and 1st class as these are the ones that are most sold on eBay having been soaked from kiloware.
Strange thing is that the latest already issued (current) Machin high values are actually very elusive in fine used condition because virtually all Post Offices are not holding them preferring to use their labels.
It's not a matter of preference as far as I know - it's simply that Edinburgh will not supply post offices. This coincided with the introduction of Horizon Labels

- one of the purposes of which was to avoid sorting offices from having to hand cancel packets and non-machineable flats. (Labels don't have to be cancelled, and any items paid partly in stamps and partly in labels have to have the stamps cancelled at the counter - you probably know this but I explain for other readers.) If there are no stamps, then labels will be used.

The HV stamps are still available to businesses and BFPOs, the latter being where the elusive 2005 printings are coming from.

As regard the interest in Post and Go labels I'm afraid you are reinforcing the attitude of the representative from Post Office Ltd at the same briefing, who really didn't know why we would possibly be interested!

As I have written to them since, we (the collectors and dealers) have far more experience and knowledge of the stamp trade and hobby than they have. The Key Account team were not even aware that for the 1984 Frama labels they produced official FDCs, 5 FD postmarks, and sold the labels in packs.

There was huge interest at the time and the lack of interest in Framas now does, I think, mirror the downturn in interest in modern GB overall. I guarantee that had official FDCs and presentation packs been produced for the Faststamps, they would have sold in large numbers, and not just outside the UK.

As with the 1984 issue, collectors have been queuing up to get the labels from each of the new machines, or at least the machines in their areas. I've had lengthy reports from Bristol (also one in the British Postmark Journal), Ludgate Circus and Leeds.

Interest is not, however, confined to collectors, as members of the public are using the P&G machines as an alternative to the lengthy queues. So postal historians will be pleased.
.
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Post by Blackpepper »

norvic wrote:
Blackpepper wrote:NZ is certainly not changing any time soon.

It is a crock that worldwide governments are happy to have stamp collectors buying and never using stamps for postage - many multi millions of dollars I would assume - yet they go out of their way to stop a very small number of stamps being re-used.
The two situations are not mutually exclusive, as Royal Mail is demonstrating. If the stamps aren't used they don't need security slits.

Incidentally 261 lots on ebay.co.uk for GB unfranked at present - http://tinyurl.com/6hxjaj - and typically selling for 70% of face or more.
Hi Norvic

I don't understand "not mutually exclusive" used in this context as the PO is getting something for nothing in effect when a collector buys the stamps and they are not used for carriage yet when a very small number is re-used the regs come out.

Using the figures you have just quoted and assuming all 1st class stamps are being sold the total "loss" (excluding those stamps sold to collectors of course) would be around 4 hundred thousand pounds PA at best.

This is hardly a major thump to the Royal UK PO income. Very small change even - to one of those Russian Olirgarcs that seem to enjoy London.
.
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