Here at the Post Office Shop, we have a large range of special stamps available which celebrate a number of events and themes; including film and television. Within our selection of items celebrating this theme is the Great British Film Miniature Sheet Cover.
This miniature sheet cover displays a specially designed Penrith, Cumbria postmark on the first day of issue which is placed upon a stunning image by artist Terence Cuneo which provides the main backdrop for the cover. This cover also features the miniature sheet which includes four stamps depicting the following classic British films:
The striking illustration by Terence Cuneo has been designed to mark the tenth anniversary of The Night Mail ending. Mail was first sorted on a moving train in January 1838, in a converted horse-box, on England's Grand Junction Railway. It was a great success, so in 1845 the service was extended via Derby to Newcastle upon Tyne by the Midland Railway; and soon after reached Scotland, crossing the border.
The first special postal train was operated by the Great Western Railway between London and Bristol. The inaugural train ran on 1 February 1855, leaving Paddington station at 20:46, and arriving at Bristol at 00:30. In 1866, apparatus for picking up and setting down mailbags without stopping was installed at Slough and Maidenhead.
The changing Post Office in the late twentieth century led to other means of transport being used. Trains were no longer faster than airfreight and not as convenient as lorries so the last TPO was run on 9 January 2004.
The Night Mail by W H Auden captures the romance of the steam train rushing through the night. On board there is a hive of activity as the men from the General Post Office stand, swaying with the movement of the train, in their specialised carriage, sorting the mail as it rushes to its destination. It reflects the pride in the speed and efficiency of the British Mail services.
This is the night mail crossing the Border, Bringing the cheque and the postal order, Letters for the rich, letters for the poor, The shop at the corner, the girl next door. Pulling up Beattock, a steady climb: The gradients against her, but she's on time . . .
Release Date: 13th May 2014.
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