Friday 11 January 2013

Paralympics Gold Medal Stamps sold out before end-of-sale date?

We understand that some of the Paralympic Gold Medal stamps were sold out before they were taken off sale at the end of December.

As reported, the arrangement between Royal Mail and the International Olympic Committee ran from 1 January 2009 to 31 December 2012, and there was a flurry of orders to Tallents House before the cut-off date, which of course coincided with the Christmas/New Year holiday.

It's reported that some orders could not be fulfilled due to stocks of one or more sheets of Paralympic Gold Medal Stamps (containing stamps for 4 different medal winners) being already exhausted.

This suggests that the Paralympic stamps may be more scarce than the Olympic.  We know someone who has access to competition mailings who has completed many sets of Olympic GM stamps on cover, but is struggling to find a single complete set of Paralympic GM stamps.


  1. Assuming that one set of single stamps were kept in mint condition, I think the scarcity of Paralympic stamps used on cover can be explained by the fact that collectors would have only one 'spare' set to use from the miniature sheets, compared with five sets of spares from the Olympic Games Gold Medal winners miniature sheets.

  2. On 30 December 2012, these were not available from the website

    TX 023 Athletics: Track - Men's 1500m T54 - David Weir
    TX 025 Swimming: Men’s 200m Individual Medley, SM8 - Ollie Hynd

    TX 027 Cycling - Road: Women's Individual C 4-5 Road Race - Sarah Storey

  3. Several reports - one in the Philatelic press - suggest that demand and therefore printing of the Paralympic stamps was only 10% of that of the Olympic stamps. This may explain the quick exhaustion of Paralympic stamps nearing the deadline as printing levels would sensibly be kept much lower. Also one suspects the printing presses stopped long before the deadline (even Edinburgh) - eg numerous post offices started running out of these issues (especially the Olympic set - again a tell tale sign of higher demand) from mid December and their stocks were not replenished.
    As ordinary collector demand will be equal for both sets to fill albums from SG listings this may also suggest that mid/long term the Paralympic set may become harder to source.


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