Wednesday 19 April 2017

Unannounced Mail by Rail Post and Go Printing at Postal Museum

Stuart Leigh (compiler of the Post and Go catalogue) has reported a new unannounced printing of the Post Office Underground Railway Mail By Rail stamp on a solo-design roll now being sold at The Postal Museum!

According to eBay seller 25mal the new roll was added to machine A001 on 3 April 2017 replacing the set of 6 Mail by Rail stamps.  This image is taken from the current eBay listing (click on link in previous line).

I find it quite incredible that something aimed only at collectors has been (a) printed, and (b) installed with no information from the three possible sources.  The Postal Museum has been silent on the subject, the Royal Mail Post and Go News webpage has not been updated with this information, and the IAR webpage for kiosk A001 shows Hibernating Animals as the last installation!

Collectors needing this new stamp for their collections should be able to get them for a few weeks and with 5 different stamps possible from this machine, it may well be in long-term use after the Museum opens in July, and concurrently with the Machin Anniversary stamps issued on 5 June.  More details if any of the organisations involved responds to our request for informaiton.

These stamps will be listed in our webshop when it reopens, including single 1st class stamps for those who are content with just one example.

(Meanwhile the IAR website reports that machine M005 was installed at Queen Elizabeth Delivery Office, Windsor, on 5 April 2017, another change not mentioned on the Royal Mail webpage.)


  1. I emailed the Postal Museum before Easter regarding information on this new issue and have still not heard anything from them and most likely never will. This would have been a perfect issue for the opening of the new Postal Museum and Mail Rail in July this year so why the 3rd April.
    Another new unannounced issue is from the GWR Museum on Saturday 15th April (middle of Easter) when the Machin with the 'King George V 90th' overprint was changed to just STEAM with the GWR logo.

    1. The Royal Mail P&G News webpage announcement is:
      "On the 15th March the Mail by Rail stamps will be replaced by the 1st Class Machin with a ‘King George V 90th’ underprint. The underprint will also be on the Locomotive design and will be in place until Friday 14 April"

      I missed that earlier. RM P&G News is currently 'in suspense', possibly after Martyn Fry's departure, although they do show the Helsinki correction.

    2. With regards to my earlier comment about the GWR Museum changing their overprints on Saturday the 15th April it would now appear that the 'King George V 90th' overprint was removed on either the evening of Thursday 13th or early on the 14th (Good Friday) as at about midday on the Friday someone was there and brought some Machin stamps without the 'King George V 90th' overprint.

    3. Another unannounced new Post & Go. A new variant of of the Swindon Steam Museum Machin Post & Go which includes the circular GWR Logo which appeared on 15th April is being sold by Ebay seller mikejoant1 ( Ebay # 382043557044). Apparently on 15th April the machine was selling the stamps at the now obsolete Postal Rates (£7.75 for a collector set) see Ebay 192159525751, but this was corrected later in the morning to £8.04.

    4. Contrary to what I said in my original comment I have now received a reply to my email regarding the Mail Rail issue from the Postal Museum and have attached a copy of it below:-

      'The stamp did change over on the 3rd April as you say. There was I'm afraid there was a bit of a breakdown in communication due to the busy period in the run up to the new site opening (now officially announced for July). It was decided early on that we would be unable to offer retail products for this issue because of a lack of resource here - as I'm sure you're aware, I have been responsible for Post & Go and am also planning the two new shops. Our press team are also under pressure and it was also decided that there wasn't enough resource to create and distribute a press release, especially as we had no new products to offer people. We were reassured by our philatelic team that this wouldn't be a problem but unfortunately this has led to some people feeling they have missed out.
      This stamp will be in our machine for some time now. We are planning (and have always planned) to release some products for this design when we open at the new site and to treat this as the 'launch' of this stamp and we will be rethinking our communications in line with our opening.'


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