Wednesday 21 November 2012

More on coil stamps used by Direct Mailers

As Royal Mail are no longer producing coils of 500 or 1000 we had some debate on the original post about which Post Office branches still have vending machines (see comments on the original article).

Now there may be another explanation.  We recently received a mailshot from WCRF-UK (World Cancer Research Fund), with this stamp on:

The vertical sides are cut, suggesting that it comes from a coil, and the top and bottom are  cut slightly on the slant, indicating it was applied by a machine which cut each stamp from the coil.  There are no security features, and it is pre-Pricing in Proportion, ie pre-2006.  As it happens, looking through a box of odds and ends I found another from the same charity, and it was exactly the same - but that was in with some covers I put away in 2004! 

So a direct mailing house, or the charity if they have a stamp-fixing machine, are still using the stamps from a very similar source to that used 8 years ago!  Difficult to believe that they are still using the same roll, so they must have bought a considerable number back then.

Either that or Royal Mail, when they were scraping the bottom of the barrel to get stamps out to customers before the April price rise, found some of these and sold them instead of modern security versions.

Whatever the reason, it pays to keep looking at your post and kiloware, because some odd security versions may pop up yet!


  1. I have just received a copy in my mail and this shows a significant misplacement of the cutting edge so that the top of the stamp has a complete perforation and 2mm of the next/previous stamp with the same amount missing from the bottom.

    1. Was yours the same as the one shown, or a security one?

    2. Hi Ian - it's exactly the same as the one shown, no security codes.

  2. Thought you might be interested - I found a copy of the MA10 MRIL security amogst some other stuff - but it is cancelled 'PO SUPPLIES DEPT' - not dated so no idea whether they are using up a roll?

  3. I believe that postmark is also used on some bulk mail - but I have no firm evidence.

    1. Hi Ian
      Over the years I have found 6 of these stamps "Cut on all 4 Sides" I've called them not knowing where they had come from, but from coils is obvious answer with top and bottom machine cut. Most are EME images but a couple are pre that, all pre-PIP and pre-security features. Most do not have equal perfs - ranging from 60%/40% to 100%/o% with one having 100% plus at top and bottom.
      Great Site - Keep up the work
      Regards - Stuart L


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