Monday, 24 August 2020

Rupert Bear 50th anniversary - 3 September 2020

An entertainment subject of a different sort will be the subject of the next stamp issue, which marks the centenary of the first appearance of the Daily Express Rupert Bear comic strip on 8th November 1920.  Rupert Bear is Britain’s longest continually running comic strip.

Of course Royal Mail have to mark this anniversary in August because they don't really want special stamps after the Christmas stamps have been issued - oh wait, there's an issue on 13th November marking Star Trek, the famous US television series.

Although the stated embargo date is 3 September all the products are now on Royal Mail's website so once again I find myself providing information earlier than expected.

These are the eight stamps in se-tenant pairs.  The values are 2nd class, 1st class, £1.45 and £1.70. Original artwork that we saw had old values of £1.42 and £1.63 so it will be interesting to see whether the stamp cards have also been reprinted, because I am fairly certain that the stamp would have been printed before the 1 September price change was decided.

Background
Rupert is a check-trouser wearing young bear who lives with his parents in the country village of
Nutwood. He enjoys magical adventures with his friends (which are humanised animals) and meets other creatures such as elves and giants with each frame of a Rupert story accompanied by lines of verse.

Such was the popularity that even in paper rationing during the Second World War, the government
sanctioned sufficient paper for the annuals to be printed, to help boost the morale of the public.

Royal Mail are pleased to celebrate 100 years of Rupert with the artwork of Alfred Bestall, who wrote and illustrated more than 270 Rupert stories, with his version being widely considered to be the definitive Rupert Bear.


Technical Details
The set consists of four se-tenant pairs of stamps, in sheets of 60 (30 pairs per sheet).  Designed by Rose using Bestall illustrations, the stamps are 35 x 37 mm and printed in litho by International Security Printers (Cartor). 
Acknowledgements: Rupert Bear TM & © Express Newspapers DreamWorks Distribution
Limited. All rights reserved.

Products
A remarkably small number of products being, stamp set, FDC, presentation pack, stamp cards and a mounted framed set.

The framed set is "all eight Rupert Bear stamps mounted and framed within individual apertures, featuring a classic Rupert illustration and text beautifully reproduced in sharp detail on premium photographic stock for an eye-catching finish, in Royal Mail's usual black ash-effect frame with fixtures for hanging".  (Price £39.99, product code N3229.)






12 comments:

  1. I always have liked the Rupert Bear artwork typical of its era. These are classic.

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  2. Nice to see the last 2 se-tenant pairs provide the new Europe and Worldwide price increase as of 01/09/2020.

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    1. It wouldn't surprise me to know that the stamps with original (lower) prices had already been printed. Certainly the artwork we had first showed the lower prices.

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    2. It will be interesting to see if the PHQ's have the new values on them

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    3. If you believe the pictures on the RM web site, they do.

      John

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  3. I love the artwork and design of these. An issue that may have been worthy of a prestige book?

    I won't be buying these as I have decided to stop collecting modern GB, other than Machins.

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    1. Perhaps you could still get a couple of the stamps to use for postage. One of my penpals had a Rupert Bear puppet, and her mother still has Rupert Bear annuals.

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  4. I too am only collecting machins due to the increase in and, therefore, increased cost of British stamps.

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  5. I will get the second class stamps, and maybe a few of the international ones, just in case I do not feel like playing mental arithmetic with my current variety of stamps for my letters abroad.

    I noticed that RM website has started to sell again sheets/half-sheets of the nice stamps, and not just the sets.

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  6. This issue is covered in detail in the latest BPB, which arrived through my letterbox this morning. Makes the embargo date of 3 September look rather ridiculous.

    John

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  7. These may well be the most popular stamps of the year. On one hand they are attractive, rather than trendy, reflect British life; rather than American cultural imperialism: on the other hand they will be sold to many ordinary people who need the up-to-date values for sending letters as no definitive are planned. Second class stamps are particularly handy, not least because the current restrictions will mean many people run out of stamps because it takes so long in the post office these days to get them. The rarest 2020 stamps in future will probably be the Sherlock Holmes ones; despite the stylish miniature sheet.

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  8. This is one set of British stamps of 2020 I truly admire this year, I grew up watching Rupert and his friends on TV, I love the way they depicted the stamps using the classic format of the cartoon strips. along with the James Bond set.

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