The Stamp Book A Postage Stamp Blog Thu, 05 Mar 2020 20:52:02 +0000 en-GB hourly 1 90890894 Rollesby, Norfolk Thu, 05 Mar 2020 20:40:56 +0000
Rollesby Old Post Office, Norfolk, Early 1900s

Rollesby is a village and civil parish in the English county of Norfolk. It is situated on the A149 road, adjacent to Rollesby Broad and Ormesby Broad, about 12 km (7.5 mi) north-west of the town of Great Yarmouth and 30 km (19 mi) east of the city of Norwich. ~Wikipedia


Clearly the postcard shows that this post office was highly camouflaged back in the early 1900s! There was no location marked on the old OS maps but usually I find most of the old post offices around the centre of the town, this was no exception.

Without the ivy (I bet that was a job and a half) we can see the shape of the building much better, with it’s attractive thatched roof and also that it has been altered over the years. As I write, there are no longer any chimneys, but they can be seen in the Google Street View archive as follows…

Rollesby Old Post Office in May 2009

And there are the missing chimneys. Going back to the more recent view, this building is now known as Post Office Cottage, as can be seen by the small wooden plaque.

Kelly’s Directory of Norfolk 1900 shows Samuel Arthur Gibbs was postmaster here around that time.

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Norvic Machin Security Checklist Wed, 05 Feb 2020 19:23:00 +0000

A listing of stamps by value and type, with details of the Royal Mail products which produced each one, showing the more detailed numbering system we use. Dates of issue or discovery, and dates of printing are shown where known. A cross-reference table of the stamps based on the Stanley Gibbons catalogue is also included. The latest version includes the numbers in Gibbon’s Concise 2019. Also includes a table showing which stamps were issued in each year.

This is a very useful and professional guide to identifying stamps of this type. As notified on the Stampboards forum today by Ian Billings, this brings things up to date to the 11th February.

It comes in PDF format and can be viewed and downloaded here:

Norvic Machin Security Checklist PDF

The price? Oh it’s free! Thank you Ian and team.

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Eaton, Norwich, Norfolk Tue, 01 Oct 2019 21:03:32 +0000
Eaton Old Post Office c. 1905

Eaton is a village and a suburb of the city of Norwich, the county town of Norfolk in the East of England. Eaton lies to the southwest of the city centre on the A11 road, the main route to London/Cambridge. ~Wikipedia


In the postcard view the post office is to the right. It’s hard to tell if any of the buildings there now are the remains of the original ones, but it looks to me like it has all gone.

We can tell it’s the right location as the distant building is still there. Here also is a view from the other direction on another old postcard.

Eaton Old Post Office

There is a postmark on the first card that gives some idea of the date of the photo…

At 21 Eaton Street a Mrs. Ann Featherstone is mentioned in the 1904 Kelly’s Directory of Norfolk as a shopkeeper and for providing postal services.

The OS Map for here as published in 1907 (revised 1905) marks the location of the post office:

1907 OS Map Norwich Eaton Post Office
1907 OS Map Norwich Eaton Post Office

Second location

Just a little way back up the hill I have another location for the post office. This is unposted so no cancellation date on this one.

Eaton Old Post Office II
Eaton Old Post Office II

Looking much the same today.

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Stamp Story: The Aden Expedition Tue, 01 Oct 2019 00:55:55 +0000 Often one of the most interesting things about many a stamp is the story it was intended to tell or the event it recollects. In this post I turn my attention towards Aden and the tale behind the KGVI 10 Rupee value from the 1939 pictorial set of stamps. First some history.

In 1839 the port town of Aden was captured by the British, this being a strategic occupation to protect communication lines with India and allow the British control of the entrance to the Red Sea.

Sira Fortress, Aden
Sira Fortress, Aden

Furthermore, the British wanted to secure Aden as a coaling station for the steamers sailing the Suez-Bombay route. Peaceful negotiations with the Sultan of Lahej had hitherto failed, and skirmishes had ensued. This ultimately induced the British to assemble a modest force of warships and soldiers to pursue their goals, known as the Aden Expedition.

1839 capture of Aden painted by Captain J. S. Rundle
1839 capture of Aden painted by Captain J. S. Rundle of the Royal Navy, who had taken part in the expedition. Showing HMS Volage & Cruizer attacking the fortress.

Four British ships were involved in the confrontation – HMS Volage, HCS Coote, HMS Cruizer and HCS Mahi. They had departed Bombay on December 29th, 1838, with Volage & Cruizer under command of Captain H. Smith and the accompanying transports under command of Major Bailie of the twenty-fourth Bombay infantry. Hostilities were ongoing when they arrived at Aden on January 16th.

Port of Aden showing Sira Fortress

Arab defenders held the key defensive location of Sira (Seerah, Serah) Island fortress. The British requested the Sultan surrender, but his response was to say he required six days to consider. Being unsatisfied with this reaction and his earlier conduct and having only a few days supplies of water on their ships the British decided to press on. On the 19th they entered the harbour and opened fire on the fortress.

The Arab response was lacking as their musket fire passed over the attacking ships. British success soon followed and despite stern resistance the Arabs were defeated, losing upward of a hundred men, whilst the British lost no more than fifteen killed and wounded.

Aden later became a Crown colony in 1937 and a few years after that the capture of Aden was featured on the 10 Rupee stamp in 1939. As it can be seen, the engraver has carefully recreated the painting that was shown above.

1939 Aden 10R Sepia & Violet SG27
1939 Aden 10R Sepia & Violet SG27

The Stanley Gibbons catalogue number for this stamp is SG27.

References used:

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Facebook Page Sun, 29 Sep 2019 20:18:42 +0000 I’ve set up a Facebook page if that interests anyone.

The blog posts will also get sent over there if that’s useful to readers:

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Overstrand II, Norfolk Sun, 29 Sep 2019 14:01:05 +0000 Overstrand Old Post Office c. 1907
Overstrand Old Post Office c. 1907

I’m adding this second image of Overstrand as it’s pointing to the other side on Harbord Road.

This is from a used postcard that is dated October 1907, with a KEVII stamp. The cancel is very unclear so I haven’t included an image. There is a postmark shown in my first post for Overstrand.


It can be seen that things have not changed that much in over a century. The post office (on the right) appears to be private homes now. Here’s a close up from the postcard which clearly shows the “Post Office” sign.

Overstrand Old Post Office Detail
Overstrand Old Post Office Detail

The first edition OS map (surveyed between 1879 and 1886) does not show these buildings, so at the time of the photograph this was a relatively new development.

Overstrand OS Map First Edition
Overstrand OS Map First Edition

On a final note, Kelly’s 1900 Directory of Norfolk lists a George Becket as the postmaster around this time.

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Summer Sale 15% off until Sunday Wed, 28 Aug 2019 14:49:55 +0000 I am having a short late summer sale, here’s the link to my eBay shop:

The sale ends on Sunday 1st September 11.30pm UK time.

GB QV 1883 5/- 5s Rose
GB QV 1883 5/- 5s Rose
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AuctionAlly: eBay Shop Embedding Sun, 23 Jun 2019 00:07:26 +0000 Time for some shameless self promotion.

If you have a website or blog and want to embed your items for sale then I have been working on a new tool to make this pretty straight forward.

Auctionally Example Design

My interest started here on this blog when I was looking for some way to embed the stamps I have for sale over on eBay. You can see the kind of thing I have made by clicking on the link to my eBay shop in the menu up top.

I’m a keen programmer and once I’d got a feel for this project, I thought I would make something useful out of what I had learnt, and thus I came up with this AuctionAlly eBay shop embedding solution.

There’s no need to register, you can use the designer tool freely. You just need your public eBay username that the system uses to get your items from eBay. Have a play with the designer and see what you can come up with.

If it’s something you feel you can use then you just need to copy a small amount of code into the web page where you want the shop to appear. I am also working on a WordPress plugin, which is very simple to use too.

And like I mentioned, it’s free, my team and me might get a small commission from a successful sale but this is at no cost to you – eBay pay out for that.

Here’s our new site, there’s a forum there if you want to get in touch. It’s pretty quiet there at the moment as we only launched a few days ago, but make yourself welcome.

Thanks for reading!


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GB QV 2d Blue: A Simple Plating Guide Thu, 06 Jun 2019 23:56:29 +0000
QV 2d Blue Plate 1

I thought I would drop this link in for future reference as it’s a well thought out and well presented guide to plating the GB QV 2d Blue.

It’s published over on Stampboards and written by emason (username).

This is just a short simple guide to the early twopenny blues issued between 1840 and 1858 and how to tell them apart. They were printed from only six plates (1 to 6) and determining which of these a particular stamp was printed from varies from the straightforward to the tricky. Having scans of the plates is useful, but it is possible (most times) to plate them without resorting to comparing the check letter positions.

Read more:

Image Credit: emason

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Filby, Norfolk Fri, 24 May 2019 17:14:33 +0000 Filby Old Post Office
Filby Old Post Office

Filby is a civil parish in the English county of Norfolk. It derives its name from the Viking File the Dane, who settled in the area around AD 800. The village is situated on the shores of Filby Broad and Ormesby Little Broad, in the Broads National Park. ~Wikipedia


The postcard dates from 1907. As can be seen from the Street View, the building that was once the post office still remains but the large building in the background is no more.

According to Kelly’s 1900 Directory of Norfolk the postmaster around this time was one Benjamin English.

The Ordnance Survey First Edition (later 19th century) shows this post office marked and is also where a benchmark is located.

Filby OS Map
Filby OS Map
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