Royal Mail 'special stamps' have been produced in the UK for fifty years since 1965, when the new postmaster general, Tony Benn, expanded the criteria for commemorative stamps to include representations of British life and culture.
After 500 years, the government of David Cameron has announced the unthinkable: from as early as today a majority stake in the Royal Mail of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland will be put up for sale into private hands. Some are not happy. The sale is expected to fetch between US$3-4.7 billion. But what does it mean? Should you invest? And what does it mean for other postal systems in, say, Australia or the USA? Postal services have been benefiting from the rise in online shopping, even as traditional mail declines.
Urban explorers surreptitiously gain access to the Post Office Railway underneath London, take lots of photos.
He showed that the Royal Mail will deliver things as small as a bee or as large as an elephant; he once posted himself home; and he invented the self-recirculating postcard - it had two sides, each with a different address. W Reginald Bray was a genius at mail art and the self-proclaimed autograph king. [more inside]
How come we can't get these? On Feb 9th there are two sets of Beatles stamps being released in the UK. Jealous? I am.
Tristan da Cunha has just been assigned its first postcode by the Royal Mail. This makes it easier for the inhabitants of these remote chunks of rock to receive mail. Easier, but still not easy - to get there, packages must first make their way to Cape Town and then travel 2,800 miles by fishing boat.