Thursday 14 July 2022

Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games - 28 July 2022

The 22nd Commonwealth Games, a mass celebration of sport throughout the Commonwealth dating back to 1930, takes place between 28 July and 8 August 2022. Held in Birmingham and the West Midlands for the first time, the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games features 19 sports and 8 para sports, with 72 nations and territories coming together to compete in 283 medal events.

Official Games website.

The set of eight stamps have a distinctive design showcasing eight exciting sports including para sports, which are integrated into the main Games rather than a separate Para event afterwards.

Set of 8 stamps issued by Great Britain 28 July 2022 to mark the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games

The stamps

1st Class Aquatics - Diving; Boxing; Para Table Tennis; Para Powerlifting;
£1.85 Gymnastics - Artistic; Cycling - Mountain Bike; Athletics; £1.85 Wheelchair Basketball

Technical details and acknowledgements

The 35 mm square stamps are printed in lithography on gummed paper with phosphor bands by Cartor Security Printers in sheets of 48, se-tenant strips of 4.  Perforations are 14.5.

Designed by Interbang and Illustrated by Charis Tsevis
images © The Birmingham Organising Committee for the 2022 Commonwealth Games Limited; 
Birmingham 2022 and the B device are registered trademarks of The Birmingham Organising Committee for the 2022 Commonwealth Games Limited; 
Commonwealth Games, Commonwealth Sport and the Celebration Device are registered trademarks of the Commonwealth Games Federation
Cover design © Royal Mail Group Ltd 2022

Products available from Royal Mail

Stamp set, first day cover, presentation pack, stamp cards; coin covers (various).

Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games Royal Mail/Royal Mint coin cover.


The last Commonwealth Games to be held in the United Kingdom were in Glasgow in 2014.


  1. I like these. The variety of colours is nice and they show the movement of the athletes. Makes a nice change to still shots. Australia Post will have to lift their game for 2026 after their poor effort for Gold Coast.

  2. At least they have the reason for commemoration on them but only 8 stamps? What's going on? Why not 10 stamps and a miniature sheet? And how about some stamps printed in UK?

  3. Still no retail booklet will we get one this year at all I ask myself?

    1. Since retail booklets would need to include four barcoded Machins it's possible they can't produce a retail booklet with four Machins and two commemoratives that are the same size as the current books of six Machins.

    2. Retail booklets are now 4 & 8 Chris, not 6 & 12. In which case there could be a mixed book of 4 larger than previously but the same size as the current books of 4.

      However these 35mm square stamps wouldn't fit. The maximum height for the stamp would be 30mm, so we would have to have something like the birds, which were 41 x 30, which compares well with the Machin 39 x 30. I would suggest that any format other than the Machins being on the right-hand side would avoid confusion with the public.

      Maybe the Transformers will not be square?

  4. Why not retain the size of an 8 Stamp Machin Booklet, but for a retail booklet just have 4 Barcoded Machin stamps, plus 2 Commemorative stamps. This would surely work and give the designer an extra blank area to add any additional artwork to the background

    1. That sounds feasible; I hadn't explored that. However it is done it's must not confuse social users. In some cases users are said to have discarded the 'illustrations' - not realising that they were special stamps - and only used the Machins.

    2. "users are said to have discarded the 'illustrations' - not realising that they were special stamps - and only used the Machins" is something I've thought for years must happen rather often.
      More profit for Royal Mail though !

    3. Surely users are not that dense as to buy a booklet of 6 stamps, clearly stated on the cover, then to use only the 4 Machin stamps?
      As for more profit for Royal Mail; easily swallowed up by the vast numbers of unfranked stamps re-used!

    4. My personal thoughts are that they are garish, take away the background mess and maybe tidy the design, and then possibly they would not be to bad. Nope shall not purchase them.

    5. I can confirm that people may have bought a booklet, used the 4 Machins and discarded the Specials. I once picked up a discarded booklet in a PO and went to throw it away then realised it still had the Specials in it.

  5. Jackson,
    Not "dense" but from my time working behind a Post Office I know many customers buy a book of stamps, First or Second, without specifying or noticing the quantity therein and there's no doubting that at a glance it looks like four stamps therein, especially as many people won't have seen a ''Special" stamp, other than the noticeably smaller Christmas stamps, used on mail they've received for a few years now.
    "The vast numbers of unfranked stamps re-used" is a separate issue, one from Mail Centres being short staffed and the handstamping duty abandoned for clearing all the mail, from delivery post(wo)men not being told to or not having the time to pen cancel stamps ( including the many on letters missed by the ink jet machines ) and from Royal Mail failing to see the bigger picture.
    And "the vast numbers of unfranked stamps re-used" will continue if Royal Mail doesn't tell the public, and I don't think it has yet, that the re-use of barcoded stamps is likely to be detected resulting in the item being surcharged.
    I would have thought that having an effective stamp cancelling regime would have been more straightforward, and maybe cheaper, than introducing barcoded stamps and swapping half a century of older ones. Or maybe it's more about the problem of forgeries but if it is it probably won't be long, if it hasn't happened already, before forged barcoded stamps are offered on that well known auction site, and the crooks in China will have made their money even the barcodes aren't unique resulting in them being easily detected in Mail Centres.

    1. On the last point, forged barcoded 2021 Christmas stamps have already been reported.

    2. Do you know if the forgers attempted unique barcodes on their 2021 Christmas stamps ?

    3. According to the report I read on the MBPC web site, it appears that the forgers have either just used the same valid barcode ("valid" in the sense of "readable", not necessarily appropriate for the value it was used on), or an invalid dot pattern (so that a QR-code reader could not decipher it). There are other mistakes (for example incorrect perf gauge) and so shouldn't mislead a collector - but of course these are aimed at the general public.

      Much fuller details are on the MBPC web site (as there are for many other aspects of both barcoded and non-barcoded machins).

    4. John,
      Thank you.
      I was in the Great Britain Decimal Stamp Book Study Circle during the 1980s but hadn't heard of the MBPC.

    5. The MBPC (Modern British Philatelic Circle) was formed by a merger of the Great Britain Decimal Stamp Book Study Circle with the British Decimal Stamps Study Circle.

      On forgeries - there are now reports of 1st and 1st Large Business Sheet forgeries, where it appears (if I've understood correctly) that the forgers have copied the dot patterns from a legal sheet.

  6. I think the problem is that there is little demand in post offices, so they don't stock them, so people don't know they are there.

    Royal Mail won't advertise in POs because POL want to be paid for posters.
    Royal Mail pay a very small commission to POL - and it probably isn't all passed on to branches.
    As you proved, if nobody asks for them - despite Royal Mail's PR efforts - it's because nobody but existing collectors wants them.

    If RM had scrapped definitives instead of barcoding them, then the only option apart from Horizon labels would have been special issues. Then they would have to be available. Forgeries might be made, but given the number of different 1st class issued each year, any forging on a massive scale would be noticed - and of course the forgeries would probably be self-adhesive because it is easier.

  7. On a sporting theeme maybe we can expect ENGLAND WINNERS stamps, not one like the old 4d but eleven First Class each showing one of the players.

    1. You'd need at least 16 to allow for starting XI plus the subs who came on and scored.


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