Norvic Philatelics - GB New Stamps and Special Postmarks

British Auto Legends - 13 August 2013

British Auto Legends celebrates some of the most stylish and ‘cool’ British motor vehicles revered throughout the world. 2013 sees the 150th anniversary of the birth of Sir Henry Royce, motoring and aviation pioneer who founded Rolls-Royce with Charles Stewart Rolls. It is also the centenary of the founding of the Aston Martin company.

The stamp issue explores two kinds of legendary cars – the thoroughbreds from the 1960s and 70s, many of which feature in experts’ lists of the greatest cars of all time, which are complemented by four British workhorses – all classic and iconic vehicles.

Stamp showing Jaguary E-type car.   Stamp showing Rolls-Roye Silver Shadow.
Aston Martin DB5 stamp. MG MGB on a stamp.
Morgan Plus 8 on stamp. Lotus Esprit on stamp.
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The three 1st class stamps show a Jaguar E-type, Rolls-Royce Silver Shadow and Aston Martin DB5. 

The three £1.28 stamps show the MG MGB, Morgan Plus 8, and Lotus Esprit.
Miniature sheet with 4 stamps, Morris Minor Post Van Europa stamp, Austin FX4 Taxi, Ford Anglia Police car, Coastguard Land Rover Defender.

The 4 x 1st class stamps in the miniature sheet, with additional detail provided by the designer.

- Morris Minor Van (Post Office) Photo supplied by BPMA, captioned "Heriot, Scotland 1972".  (The year 1972 may be incorrect).

- Austin FX4 Taxi shown at the Victoria memorial in front of Buckingham Palace; original photo is dated 1969

- Ford Anglia 105E Police Panda Car, photo supplied by Ford. Location unknown, but the vehicle was in service with the Lancashire police at the time. Original photograph is dated 1967.

- HM Coastguard Land Rover Defender 110 allocated to St Austell Coastguard, and photographed on location by Nigel Millard in 2012.

Issued on 19 September 2013

Postal Services retail booklet.
The Morris Minor Van Europa stamp also appears in a retail booklet of 6 self-adhesive stamps to be issued on 19 September with the Merchant Navy stamp issue.

The booklet includes the new 1st class red Machin definitive, with source code MCND and year code M13L, and for the first time 'special stamps' from two different issues, the other being the 1st class stamp showing Royal Mail Ship Britannia.

The selvedge shows posters as displayed on the sides of post vans, and illustrations of ships and postal history.

Superb examples of the six thoroughbreds were located in virtually factory fresh conditions, and all were photographed by the expert car photographer James Mann, involving specialist lighting and set up to capture the classic lines of the vehicles.  One of these workhorses, the Morris Minor van in Royal Mail livery, is the contribution to the PostEurop theme of 2013 (the Post Van). 

For a country of such small geographical stature, Great Britain’s role in shaping the history of the automobile cannot be underestimated. From the kernel of the ‘horseless carriage’, grew an industry that once accounted for a quarter of the world’s car production and almost half of all vehicle exports. Today, car manufacturing remains a significant part of the British economy with several marques currently enjoying record sales. However, the road to prominence was littered with potholes.  An astonishing 221 firms entered the industry between 1901 and 1905. From this jumping off point, the British motor industry began to flourish, with the likes of Herbert Austin and William Morris applying mass production techniques as they bid to bring motoring to the masses. However, it was only after the end of Second World War that the UK truly became a car manufacturing powerhouse.

Initially afflicted by shortages of raw materials, the British motor industry soon found its feet as governmental controls channelled the supply of steel to firms that exported a high percentage of production. The term
‘Export or Die’ was seared into the collective consciousness.  By contrast, France, Italy and Germany’s motor industries had suffered grievously and took considerably longer to recover from the conflict.  British firms were all too happy to exploit this situation and export sales surged with demand in Europe, as well as North America, resulting in record production figures.  Add in commonwealth countries where there was a ready-made market and it is little wonder that the British motor industry was in the driving seat.

Unfortunately, this situation could not last. A mixture of political intrigue, shotgun weddings between former rivals and union unrest served to bring the industry to its knees.  Sell-offs and plant closures increased, culminating in the collapse of MG Rover in 2005. Yet for all the pain and pitfalls, the British motor industry continued to build landmark classics while also creating and exploiting niche markets.   Today, there are just seven volume producers and they are all foreign owned. Nevertheless, these and other, smaller manufacturers continue to build cars that appeal on the global stage; brands that marry style with ingenuity and quality with refi nement.

Technical details:
The 60 x 21 mm stamps were designed by Why Not Associates; the sheets of 30/60 are perforated 14½. 
The 183 x 74mm Miniature Sheet was designed by Robert Maude and Sarah Davies.  The stamps 41 x 30mm stamps are perforated 14½x 14.
Both the stamp set and the MS are printed by Cartor Security Printing, Meaucé, France, in lithography.   All stamp images © Royal Mail ©2013.

Products issued - we will be stocking the booklet only and will prepare some FDCs for the special stamps from booklets.

Set of 6 stamps, miniature sheet, retail booklet
Presentation Pack containing set and miniature sheet 
Set of 11 stamp cards
Two First Day Covers

Special first day of issue postmarks will be shown here. These cannot be obtained the date of issue; more may be added. Not to scale.

FD postmark showing speedometer.
Postmark showing steering wheel. 
Non-pictorial FD postmark.
Postmark showing Aston Martin - I think!
Postmark showing Aston Martin.
Ref FD1318TH
Official Bureau postmark
Ref FD1318PL
Awalton*, Peterborough, official first day of issue postmark
Ref FD1318NP
Awalton*, Peterborough,  non-pictorial official first day of issue postmark
Ref M12918
British Automobile Legends, Aston Road, Birmingham
Ref L12913
Bond Street, London W1
(referring to James Bond)
Postmark showing logo of Dover Transport Museum Society.
 Postmark with the logo of the Federation of British Historic Vehicles Cliubs.
Postmark showing badge of Morgan Cars. Postmark showing Morgan motor car.
Postmark showing Silverstone racing circuit map.
Ref L12915 British Auto Legends, Dover Transport Museum Society, Dover, Kent.
Ref L12916 Federation of British Historic Vehicles Clubs, Wallingford, Oxfordshire.
Ref M12920 Morgan +8 (badge) Malvern, Worcs.
Ref L12914 Melvyn Rutter Limited, Little Hallingbury, Essex
Ref M12921 British Auto Legends, Towcester, Northamptonshire
Postmark showing Ford Anglia Police car.
Postmark showing Ford Anglia police car.
Postmark showing badge of Chester Vintage Enthusiasts Car Club.
Postmark showing dashboard fuel guage. Postmark sowing a car steering wheel.
Ref N12922 Ford Anglia 105E Panda Car, Goathland, Whitby, N.Yorks (associated with TV police series Heartbeat.)
Ref M12919 British Autos - Work Horses, Ford Street, Birmingham
Ref W12924 Chester Vintage Enthusiasts Car Club, GBFDC Assoc Chester
Ref L12926
British Auto Legends, Brentwood, Essex (location of Ford UK registered office)
Ref M12927
British Auto Legends, Gaydon, Warwick (location of museum)
Postmark showing speedometer.

Ref M12928 British Auto Legends Longbridge, Birmingham
(Location of MG Rover factory)
Postmark showing car wheel.

Ref M12929  British Auto Legends, Malvern, Worcesteshire
(Morgan Cars location)
    * Awalton: Birthplace of Sir Henry Royce

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This page updated 30 August 2013

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