Friday, 6 July 2018

Captain Cook's Voyages stamp issue 16 August 2018

Once again I am able to refer you to the website of Buckingham covers for your first sight of a new stamp issue that Royal Mail won't allow me to show* here.

As you can see from the page showing the Buckingham FDCs, the issue consists of a set of 6 stamps and a miniature sheet of 4.  The set consists of se-tenant pairs of 2nd class, 1st class and £1.45 (the basic rate to Australasia) stamps, and the miniature sheet has a pair of 1st class and a pair of £1.45.

One first class stamp shows the familiar picture of James Cook, with an unidentified ship in the background.  Also shown are Sir Joseph Banks (2nd class), naturalist and botanist, and Sydney Parkinson (£1.45), artist, who drew the picture of the Blue-black grassquit (bird) as well as the self-portrait.   The other stamps in the set show the Chief Mourner of Tahiti (2nd), the transit of Venus (1st), and portrait of a Maori Chief.

The miniature sheet shows a chart of Cook's discoveries, canoes on Raiatea, a Maori clifftop fort on an arched rock, and repairs to the Endeavour in Australia.

The stamps will be issued on 16 August to mark the 250th anniversary of Cook's three-year expedition.  By including talented artists and scientists Cook's voyage provided never-before-seen information about the lands on the other side of the world.

Cook last appeared on a British stamp in the Travellers' Tale Millennium series in February 1999.

* Part of the reason is so that they can do their own publicity of the stamp issue and events surrounding it, and they don't want big splashes on social media such as Twitter, which is exactly where I picked up Buckingham's news.  Comments not really necessary, but Royal Mail do read, so go ahead!


  1. To be honest I find the secrecy applied by RM to be really silly, look at the online shop they still have Christmas stamps as #1 on the list 6 months later. Plus they really do not publicise any of the new stamp issues. Rant over.

  2. Is this practice, the current Royal Mail management Consignia moment?

    Maybe just ignoring a few issues, especially if it involved on of their ‘biggies’, might show Royal Mail that obstructing free (positive) is detrimental to their business by encouraging free (negative) publicity.

    But the again is there any such thing as bad publicity?

  3. Can you remember the last time there was a poster for the special issue stamps in a post office? Even if it isn't financially feasible for them to do all the issues, surely a stamp calendar could be displayed with space on the poster for updates to be applied? I notice some post offices have screens showing adverts but I don't recall seeing stamps on them.

    At least the stamp values make some sense, although missing the postcard rate to Australia.

  4. There is a sneak peak of these stamps on Bradbury covers site, they look pretty impressive.

    On a different note, this year the release schedule seems to have gone tits up, they seem to be moving goalposts with the release dates. The Old Vic stamp set getting later and later. And talking of goalposts will there be another stamp set if England win the World Cup

    1. I see the Philatelic Bulletin shows the Old Vic issue on (Saturday) 11 August - wrong. The issue date is 30 August.

      Indeed, I agree there will be a MS for England winning the World Cup, just as there were for other sporting events.

  5. It's a beautiful set of stamps!

  6. Not much danger of a Miniature Sheet celebrating England's 2018 World Cup win I'm afraid!
    Perhaps Royal Mail will issue one if they finish in third place?

    1. How about coming forth? or better still a Stamp for Harry Kane (Tottenham) Golden Boot.