Saturday 25 September 2021

Royal Mail at Autumn Stampex 2021

Stampex starts later this week and as far as I know the announcement below has only appeared in the Postmark Bulletin.  A reader has suggested that I should report it here for the benefit of those other readers who may be going and who don't get the Bulletin.

Return of Stampex
Stampex returns on 29th September 2021, for the first time since Autumn Stampex 2019, and we are looking forward to seeing as many of our regular Stampex customers as possible.

Whilst there are still some challenges caused by Covid, some aspects of our service will be a little bit different for this show:

• There will be Stampex Postmarks, one for each day of the show, and these are published on page 5 of this edition of the Postmark Bulletin. However, we are unable to provide handstamping on site. Instead all items posted at the show will be forwarded to the Special Handstamp Centre for processing and sent to the customers’ address after the show.

There will be no Trade area for this show, thereby providing a larger area for our team to work and socially distance.

• We are planning to bring as broad a range of products as possible, these will be focused predominantly on single products and individual sets i.e. Stamp Books, Prestige Stamp Books, Packs, Generic / Collector Sheets, Sets, Minisheets, Annual Products etc. 

This means we will not be able to offer the full range of bespoke tearing that customers may have been used to at Stampex. This is to reduce the handling, by many members of the team, and also to reduce queueing and serving time on the stand. 

We hope to be able to reintroduce the wide range of bespoke tearing and formats across the full range of Machin Definitve, Country Definitves and Special Stamp Sheets at future shows.

• To avoid excessive queuing around the stand we will provide an order form, available on the Royal Mail stand and at the Stampex Welcome Desk, for customers to order any items from the Royal Mail stand for collection later that day

Customers will also be able to pay for orders on the stand, with free delivery to their home address, for our most popular formats and for any items in our latest Royal Mail Stock List available at the show.

We look forward to seeing our regular customers at Stampex once again

[My emphasis in all cases.]

Given that - if Stampex went ahead at all - these plans were made some time ago, it seems a pity that the details had not been published in the Philatelic Bulletin and the philatelic press.

The absence of a trade stand means that there are less likely to be any announcements of new finds arising from stock at the event - dealers generally have longer to study stock than casual customers.  

As many collectors know, the trade is provided periodically with a list of new counter sheet printings.  At the time of writing the lists provided so far this year have not included any counter sheets for M21L NVIs although we know that they exist.  So if you do find any at Stampex please tell us as soon as possible so that we can make enquiries through our usual channels.

We know that there will be no Post and Go machines at Stampex; I'm told that Royal Mail Post & Go kiosks won’t be at the political party conferences this year either.


I'm reminded that PTS will follow Covid protocols for the show, and that registration is required not only for day 1 (which costs you £10) but for each day.  

Covid arrangements include

- Proof that the individual has received two vaccinations against COVID, the second of which must have been administered at least two weeks before arrival at the venue OR

- Proof of a negative PCR or lateral flow test within 48 hours of arrival at the venue (reported to the NHS website). We plan to have a number of lateral flow test available on site should anyone require one. This test takes 30 minutes and you will be asked to wait outside of the venue until your test result is presented 

See everything else here.


We've added a report from Day 1 here.


  1. Royal Mails complete inability to communicate with customers other than through the Postmark Bulletin of it's intentions of it's service at Stampex is quite disgusting. Stampex has been the only way customers can get Cylinder panes, specific year coded booklets as they won't entertain ordering such items through Stamp & Collectibles. My whole day at Stampex revolves around obtaining the latest definitive cylinder panes and year coded booklets. What a complete let down.

    Lets hope that by the time London 2022 comes along Royal Mail will have a change of heart as it will be near on 2 years since customers could obtain all those missing stamps.

    1. Chris,
      Yes, I understand your "quite disgusting".
      I have always learnt of Stampex and, more importantly, the ten-yearly International exhibitions from Royal Mail's Philatelic Bulletin that I've subscribed to for fifty years but there's been no mention of this Autumn Stampex in it and I only learnt of it here a few minutes ago.
      Many of us need proper notice for such events, not for time off work later in life but for booking 'Advance' rail tickets and sometimes accommodation.
      Also missing from the Philatelic Bulletin for a couple of years has been the Letters to the Editor that I contributed to a few times.

    2. I gave up the Bulletin some years ago after a few decades of subscribing. It went from being philatelically informative to being thin on philately, often incorrect or missing information and occasionally providing information on new issues after the issue date. No idea what it is like now, but this blog is by far the best best source of info around on GB stamps!

  2. and £10 to get in on Wednesday ........ registration for all entrants on all days , so we should get lots of future post ...

  3. From what you wrote, I got the impression that Stampex would require visitors both to be double jabbed and to have evidence of a recent negative PCR test. I think that the actual requirement is for either one or the other.

    The actual wording copied from the visitor information email is as follows:-

    We ask therefore that you bring one of the following

    Proof that you have received two vaccinations against COVID, the second of which must have been administered at least two weeks before arrival at the venue
    Proof of a negative PCR or lateral flow test within 48 hours of arrival at the venue (reported to the NHS website).
    Proof of a positive PCR test within 180 days where the required isolation period has passed

    1. You missed the word OR at the end of the first of those.

  4. Does anyone know if there were any Stampex souvenirs such as tickets, catalogues, labels etc. Any info would be much appreciated

  5. Does anyone know if there were any stampex souvenirs for this event such as tickets, catalogues, labels etc? Any info would be much appreciated.


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