Friday 16 November 2012

Hytech Faststamp machine for British Postal Museum next month.

The blog reports that a Hytech v2 Post and Go machine is to be installed at the BPMA:

The British Postal Museum & Archive (BPMA) has announced it will be getting a fully functioning Royal Mail Post and Go machine on 3 December 2012. This will make the BPMA the first place to get a permanent Royal Mail Hytech Post & Go machine outside of a temporary exhibition environment.

The BPMA Post and Go Machine will only accept credit and debit cards and is only available for use by visitors to the BPMA.

The Faststamps will be overprinted:

The British Postal 
Museum & Archive 
Unless there is a change of heart and mail-order facilities are provided through the BPMA shop, the scope for many collectors away from London, and especially outside the UK to obtain what they want with this overprint is slim, and they will have to rely on dealers.

This is a bad thing. Royal Mail and Post Office Ltd are creating a limited-access market when they know that collectors worldwide are interested. I understand that one or more of these machines is already lined up to be at a major south of England stamp fair next spring.  

So with an apparently ready market for these (look at the eBay results for the first sales from Perth) dealers can probably pay their table fees simply by spending some time at the Post and Go machine and selling the output !  

It's not sour grapes - I could go to that show.  But I suspect many collectors will be content with what they already have!  Several of our customers have declined Perth's output.

Note: unless somebody at BPMA makes these available to mail order customers we are unlikely to have these before January, or maybe even late February after Stampex.  We will not be producing FDCs.

UPDATE 1 December: we've been told that the overprint will read only

The B P M A 
Update 5 December: BPMA have advised that they are selling blank BPMA envelopes for 50p, and that  

"If people hand their covers to the Search Room staff by mid afternoon they can get our special handstamp." 



  1. There is much discussion about when 'old time' collectors are abandoning their GB collections. The life of Post and Go's may have been shortened for these loyal collectors as well.

  2. I tend to agree with your view about access. I'm surprised the BPMA can't see the opportunity this also provides to sell BPMA shop covers and postcards services with these stamps.

    BTW, Thank you for your courtesy in linking to the GBStamp post. If only everyone on the net were as considerate as you!

  3. Several people have told me they intend to finish their collection when the Queen passes away but I also know many others that have had to abandon new issues now due to the expense.

    I wouldn't mind some of these Post & Go surprises so much if Royal Mail cut right back on the commemorative issues. We keep being told how the volume of letters handled is falling but they certainly keep the taps full on when it comes to new stamp production!

  4. If the aim of this additional text, was to raise awareness of British Postal Museum & Archive (BPMA), well it done that.

    What makes these issues (Perth & this one) any different from the privately overprinted booklets produced for Stampex, which most people didn’t touch with a barge pole.

    Will a machine with restricted public access (user card needed to access its location) going to be given a catalogue listing or just warrant a foot note in the catalogues?

    Yes it’s nice to have completeness, but each one of us sets the scope & limits for our own collections. Do you get a retail booklet stamp or do you get the complete booklet for your collection?

  5. If only collecting a single 1st Class or collectors strip - Post and Go costs are TINY when compared to the 'Wallpaper' churned out by RM (see earlier important entry on this blog 'Enough is enough...') - most of it of dubious and/or little POSTAL significance - at least Post & Go has absolute postal significance and philatelic authenticity - Post and Go is here to stay - it's central and the future of RM postal strategy policy - collectors miss out at ground level at their peril - future predictions suggest post and go will replace sheet ('wallpaper') stamps - I suggest we are in a 'transition' period....

  6. If the BPMA don't have a member of staff dedicated to producing stamp strips in all the variations from their P&G Machine for their members (which would rise drastically if they provide this service)then they like the RM Tallents House are missing a golden opportunity to swell their coffers.

  7. Would/will the BPMA benefit finacially from sales from the machine? If not, why would they want to have a member of staff producing them?

    1. They could - if they don't, then dealers and local collectors will, and even if they contribute to the BPMA's funds, BPMA won't make as much money as perhaps they could. One of the 'Friends of the BPMA' who lives in the London area could handle this; I can't being too far away. (Anybody can join, and the magazine "Cross Post" is worth the membership fee alone:

  8. Interesting that BPMA does not cultivate overseas members by only accepting Sterling cash or Sterling cheque. Why is this not surprising me???

    1. Tony, that restriction is only for Friends of the BPMA membership, and I shall mention it to them. The Friends are an independent voluntary body.

      You can Donate to the BPMA via PayPal or with your debit or credit card using the secure Charities Aid Foundation system -

  9. The GBblog states that the machine will be located in the foyer, thus a reader card is not required because any member of the public can access the foyer.

    A bog-standard example of the BPMA overprinted P&G stamp need only cost 60p, plus dealer mark-up if unable to visit personally, which is hardly a rip-off.

    Unlike the stamp show printings, there is every indication that each label design will be available for around three months, or roughly 60 working days, instead of the 2-4 days average of stamp shows, so they are not likely to be sold at stupid prices as they could not be classed as "rare". Or, put differently, more fool the collector who pays stupid prices and feeds the greed of those opportunists with stocks. A professional dealer, such as Ian, will charge a fair price for the effort that he has gone to in acquiring that stock and should not be begrudged a profit.

    I say "good on BPMA" for helping to raise its profile in the collecting world at a time when it is successfully progressing its exciting plans for a new museum complex up the road in Calthorpe House.

  10. Hi Ian,
    it's always a pleasure to read your news on British stamps. Really very well done.
    Having been a collectors of ATM/Framas/CVP/Faststamps for over twenty years (incl. publishing catalogs on US and Taiwan ATM) , I'd like to make some comments on your Faststamps (based on the simple observation that history repeats itself...even in philately):
    [1] The pitcher goes often to the well, but is broken at last...Royal Mail goes over the top with its Faststamp papers, imprints, overprints, etc. Sometimes less is more. How long will collectors go along with it? Looking at ATM-issuing countries such as France, Taiwan or Israel, you'll know the answer.
    Best wishes from New England to East Anglia (used to work at IFRN),
    [2] What about the thermal printing? I have not seen anywhere any remark about this serious issue. Thermal printing will fade over time, no matter how you store (cool, dry, away from sun, no plastic for storage) the stamp. Thermal printing on the early France ATM from 1982 is almost completely gone. Thermal printing on early issues from Spain, S'pore etc has been deteriorating within few years. Since RM milks collectors with Faststamps issues on stamp shows, why not using a more stable printing (e.g. thermal transfer)? One does not need to reinvent the wheel. The colleagues from "De Post" in Brussels could certainly help out in this matter.
    [3] The Postal Museum in France has had an IER2 machine for several years now. "La Poste" even managed to issue a preprinted paper only to be used in this has been changing on a regular basis (yearly).

  11. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    1. The previous comment has been transferred to the more relevant post, without the commercial advertising link.


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