Norvic Philatelics - GB New Stamps and Special Postmarks
Pictorial Faststamps: Winter Fur & Feathers 16 November 2015
Following the success in 2014 of the
Winter Greenery stamps, especially in post office branches' self-service
kiosks, Royal Mail is again issuing just four designs, two for 1st class
and two for 2nd class stamps.
During the winter months, the UK countryside can lose some of its natural
colour, as leaves fall and trees become covered in snow. Yet among the
seasonal changes linger some spectacular animals, often hard to see but
occasionally revealing themselves with a flash of an underwing or shiny
pelt. The robin, for example, is at its most dramatic during the British
winter, its colourful red breast standing out from its surroundings, while
other creatures, like the mountain hare, stoat and weasel, become
completely transformed by their winter ermine.
Some birds and mammals visit British shores only in winter, including
species such as the Redwing. During this time of year, the UK becomes a
migration hotspot, with millions of animals passing through or taking up
temporary residence for a few weeks or months. So, while many animals
hibernate and sit out the British winter, the rest of the countryside
plays host to some wonderful sights and sounds, making it well worth
keeping one’s eyes and ears open during a bracing wintry walk.
Pictorial Post & Go stamps appear in machines in UK Post Offices for
defined periods of time in the year and this series is intended to provide
attractive stamps that are appropriate for the season in which they are
Post & Go terminals allow customers to weigh their letters and packets,
pay for and print postage labels and stamps without the need to visit the
counter. The first Post & Go machine was trialled in The Galleries Post
Office® in Bristol in 2008. The labels will be used in Post & Go
machines at Post Offices around the country and can be obtained with 6
different service indicators: 1st class up to 100g & 1st class Large up
to 100g, a dual-value Europe up to 20g/World up to 10g, Europe 100g,
Worldwide 20g, and Worldwide 100g *. The stamps are dispensed singly
or in strips of up to 5 or 6 (depending on the machine) of the same value or
various values. On NCR machines 2nd class and 2nd class Large
denominations can be dispensed on the appropriate (blue background)
reel. NCR Self-Service machines also dispense stamps with these
designs for many different weights and services including Small Parcels,
Special Delivery, and International Tracked and Signed.
* Once again a Collectors Strip of 6 (non-2nd class) Faststamps will
be printed onfox/squirrel alternately. A complete set of all
available Faststamp values on all designs will therefore be only 16
The new background text - see below right - ought to ensure that the correct
rolls are placed in the appropriate part of the machines. This is designed
to avoid last year's situation where 2nd
class stamps appeared with 1st class values.
1st class reel: Red Fox and Red Squirrel
2nd class reel: Mountain Hare and Redwing
The Collectors Pack will include the stamps with values as
The background of the 2nd class stamps:
and the 1st class:
The stamps in detail
Mountain Hare -
A true alpine mammal, the mountain hare inhabits upland areas with a
height of more than 500 metres. From October onwards, it undergoes a
series of remarkable moults, transforming from brown to pure white. During
average British winters, this makes the hare virtually invisible.
The smallest member of the thrush family, the redwing is a winter migrant
in the UK, first appearing in late September. Easy to identify with its
distinctive red flanks, in harsher winters it can be seen in gardens,
foraging for berries and other food.
Red Fox -
One of the UK’s most abundant wild animals, the red fox is at home in a
wide range of habitats – in both rural and urban areas – and its numbers
are on the increase in towns and cities. With its sleek coat and
bushy tail, it is an instantly recognisable and iconic sight.
Red Squirrel -
Most known for its red fur, tufted ears and bushy tail, the red squirrel
is one of the UK’s favourite native mammals, although increasingly rare to
spot. It is most at home in the coniferous woodlands of Scotland, but also
survives in isolated spots in England
Designed by Osborne Ross and illustrated by Robert Gillmor the four 56mm x
25mm stamps are printed in gravure by International Security Printers.
The stamps in the pack will have the service indicator and other
detail printed in gravure. All images are by kind permission of Royal
Mail, Copyright 2015. This website is copyright Norvic Philatelics 2015.
The labels will be used in Post & Go machines at Post Offices around
Royal Mail will again produce a First Day Cover and official First Day
Postmarks for these.
A mint set of 4 values will also be available from Royal Mail's Tallents
House Bureau in a pack similar to a presentation pack. The stamps in
the pack will be 1st, 1st Large, 2nd and 2nd Large, as shown above, with a
philatelic branch code.
Postmarks available for the day of issue will be shown here These are
not to scale. These postmarks cannot be obtained after the date
* In the Postmark Bulletin these
are numbered FD1522 but that
number has already been
used and FD1527 is correct.
| Ref FD1527TH*
Philatelic Bureau Official Postmark
illustrated with a map of the British Isles
| Ref FD1527PL*
Winterley, Sandbach non-pictorial
|Ref S13662 Post & Go
Winter Fur & Feathers
Fur & Feathers
Fox Hill, Birmingham
Winter Fur & Feathers
Winter Fur & Feathers,
Feathers Lane, Basingstoke
|Ref L13655 Post & Go
Winter Fur & Feathers
This page updated 31 October 2015
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