Tuesday 3 December 2019

Royal Mail's December Postal Slogans, Universal machine usage & other oddities

As expected Royal Mail has got off to an early start in December 2019 with the first Christmas slogan appearing on Monday 2nd December,

This post will include all reported December slogans, any usage of Universal machines anywhere on any date, (even if already reported for a different date), and any other oddities you find, so please send them to the usual email address (see top right).

Thanks to JE for the first one, used at the Lancashire and South Lakes Mail Centre at Preston on 02/12/2019:
Remember to
Post Early
this Christmas!

Update 4 December.
This is the one time of the year when we get a lot of stamped mail - most of our customers use online payment methods rather than cheques - so we are able to add two more examples from our own mail.  Another IMP impression, from Gatwick MC also on 02/12/2019, and one from Norwich MC on 03-12-2019.

UPDATE 12 December
Thank you to everybody who has sent images and reports of Christmas period postmarks. In no particular order, MC, JG, RS, JR, JE, MG & BM).

More 'Remember to Post'.   Lancashire & S Lakes and Romford both reversed on square envelopes, Home Counties North neatly and clearly on the back of the envelope!, and the other format from Exeter.


Last Posting Dates 1.
The first LPD slogan is from Peterborough on 10 December, and a second is reported from Swindon but with an unclear date.

2nd class - Wed 18th
1st class - Fri 20th
Special Delivery - Mon 23rd


Update 18 December
We now have the other format from Bristol (BA BS GL TA) Mail Centre on 13/12/2019, and reversed from Sheffield on 11/12/2019. 

Also a particularly interesting mess from Aberdeen on 11 & 12 December, coupled within the other format from Bristol 2 days later in each case.

At the end of that campaign we have the slogan which omits the 2nd class date, which should be applied to mail posted from 17th.  However, the example provided, on a local Preston cover, shows its use started before 22.44h on 16 December.  

Lancashire and South Lakes 16/12/2019 and the other format from Medway Mail Centre 17-12-2019.  The fonts are quite different.

Last chances to post:
1st class -
Friday 20th
Special Delivery
Monday 23rd


UPDATE 21 December
The Medway example above has 11 wavy lines and the slogan on 6 lines.  The Exeter 19-12-2019 example below sent by BM has 9 wavy lines and the slogan rearranged in 4 lines.

BM also sends this non-slogan version of the ink-jet postmark from North & West Yorks (Leeds) on 17/12/2019

UPDATE 30 December 2019
My thanks to GF for what ought to be the last new slogan for 2019, and one which I wasn't expecting.  From Northern Ireland Mail Centre used on 28 December, this one reads as shown.  At least I assume it is 'everyone' - I don't think 'everybody' would fit.

Happy New Year
from everyone
at Royal Mail!

UPDATE 1 January:
My thanks to MM for this very clear image of the other format from Aberdeen MC on the same date.

Of course I am not ruling out other reports when people start examining their unrecycled Christmas envelopes, and those received from neighbours and workplaces.  Any more for December will be reported here; January will start a new post soon.

A number of readers have sent in pictures of Universal machine impressions, the best being this from JE which is from Stromness ('Snowman' slogan, 4 Dec 2019).   This also shows additional cancellations by Aberdeen iLSM in transit and by Preston (Lancashire and South Lakes) IMP on arrival - 3 different machines on one cover!


This machine is in use all year and another was sent by JE from Orkney, Kirkwall, showing wavy lines only, poor impression.

Seasonal impressions were reported from 'Lancashire / South 6 Lakes' from Preston on 27 Nov 2019 (also shown in the November blogpost), with worn Postcode slogan. Also poor impressions seen from Tyneside (probably 'SCM3') and Norwich (CFC4), with wavy lines only.

Update 12 January, placed here only because it is a variant on the above.
Thanks to GF who sent another copy of the Postcode slogan from Lancashire, but this time using the older LANCASHIRE die instead of including South Lakes.  I can't work out which die this is but those who are more familiar with them will doubtless be able to identify it.  It's amazing what old junk is lying around in mail centres - all the better for collectors!

Other readers reported Gatwick with the 'What will you send?' slogan, 9 December 2019, and Medway SCM but this is dated 8.30 PM / 2018!


Universal Update 18 December
JE reports City of Inverness and two Chester N Wales / Gaer Gog Cymru dies, all with Christmas slogan, all too poor to scan successfully.  Slightly better are the two from Leeds ('North & West Yorkshire') dies, with two old favourite slogans - the Candle design first used in 1960 and the Snowman in 1990, both on 13 December.

Lastly, for now, this one with wavy lines, which GF assures us is from Belfast Mail Centre (also on 13 December)

UPDATE 21 December
JG has sent two more Universal examples from Peterborough Mail Centre.  The first from machine -A- is dated DECember; the other from -SCM3- is undated.

UPDATE 22 December.
This may be the final addition before Christmas, from Cumbria, Dumfries & Galloway dated 9 XII 2019

UPDATE 19 May 2020!
I've been going through some envelopes that a neighbour gave me and found this Universal usage from Wales.  It's not easy to see where it was posted although the date of 17 DEC 2019 is clear enough.  I had to resort to the retroreveal.com website to bring out the text of the slogan, which confirmed it as a Welsh version of the 'Merry Christmas Please Post Early' slogan, reading 'Nadolig Llawen Postiwch yn Gynnar' on the left of the slogan.  Enough of the text is now visible to prove it.

Also today we've added a new Goldsmith Street slogan to the October post.  Apart from being in the other format, this one is unusual is that the letter was sent to and within Northern Ireland, but the Royal Mail logo is in Welsh!

As usual, we will add others as we learn of them.  My thanks to BM, MC, JE, KC, PC, GF,


  1. Medway postmarks now (10th Dec) state the last posting dates, while on 6th December Jubilee mail centre was using a Gatwick universal machine.

  2. The largely unreadable Belfast Mail Centre mark would have 'NIMC' (i.e. Northern Ireland Mail Centre) at the top of the circular die (if you could read it!)


Thank you for reading the blog and commenting: please use an identity (name or pseudonym) rather than being Anonymous; it helps us to know which 'anonymous' comments are from the same person to avoid confusion. Comments are moderated to avoid spam, but will be published as soon as possible.