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Member postings for Alex

Here is a list of all the postings Alex has made in our forums. Click on a thread name to jump to the thread.

Thread: Mystery stamp
15/09/2020 10:23:20


Nice looking stamp.

It comes from one of the pre independence Indian feudal states, in this case a place called Faridkot. I gather that these were printed in the 1930s but never actually saw postal use. Maybe a collector of India can help you further.

Hope that helps,


Thread: Racism
11/06/2020 18:41:20

Interesting point.

My own view is that the present climate shouldn't affect the philatelic market or have a negative impact on collectors whose private collections include stamps that display historical people, institutions, subjects or countries that may be deemed 'racist' by a modern audience.

I collect Third Reich items and that is a collecting field that has long had its fair share of negative and subjective criticism from both philatelists and lay people alike. However, the collecting of this type of material has never been banned and I very much doubt that your private collection will suffer any censorship of any kind due to the present political situation.

However, those who display their collections in public, whether at stamp shows or at their local school, may find that social pressure and local councils may dictate what is acceptable for such occasions in future.

Would be interesting to see how others here feel about the matter too.

Thread: Identifying a Stamp's Country of Issue
19/04/2020 08:18:17

Love your attitude! The reason that I left my local philatelic society was because of jerks like you..!!

Thread: Display Album
07/02/2020 18:49:18

I do keep my stamps in Lighthouse black paged stock books. The only items I generally write up these days are my postal covers.

However, your idea is good and, in fact, was quite common in the past. I have had a few vintage philatelic books from the 1950s / 60s which showed pages laid out just as you describe.

There are a few companies that supply both good quality large philatelic ring binders and black pages to fit them. The ones I use are German Lighthouse produced ones but there are other styles and makes.

Thread: Forests
31/08/2019 15:40:37

I felt like you on seeing this set in that I'm considering buying it, and perhaps a FDC as well.

I think that the set works well in promoting both the natural beauty of British forests and of the centenary of the Forestry Commission. The landscape photography works well for this subject and displays the forests very beautifully. Glen Affric is just down the road from me and the stamp successfully captures the spirit of the place.

I am a member of the Woodland Trust and have always loved the woods and forest since, as you note, my childhood in Germany when my family lived there for a few years.

Bavarian Forest

As to this set, well done to RM.

Thread: Stamp Albums
19/08/2019 18:44:34

Hi Neil

I haven't come across the black pages with country headings on them though several companies make similar pages in white with the country name at the top. There are some companies, however, that produce decals of country names which you can stick to the top of the pages. I have used these in the past but be warned that the adhesive tends to loosen over the years and may fall off eventually. Have a look at the stock being sold by the likes of Prinz and Lighthouse.

Maybe some other members here can help?

Thread: What do you collect?
19/08/2019 18:29:23

Hello and welcome, Alistair

I would certainly say that it would be a good collecting area. I'm guessing that you would like to collect British stamps of the period. There were some great sets to buy as the 1960s produced some good artwork. However, if you also go down the route in collecting postal history you could build up some good collections.

For example, if you went to certain places for your summer holiday, you could collect the various pictorial postmarks associated with holiday destinations. Or if you did National Service, you could collect the BFPO postmarks from places in which you were based. The list is endless. Plus, there have been plenty of modern GB issues which deal with 1960s subjects, for example films. If you look at foreign stamps as well then almost everything about the 1960s has been covered on stamps, from pop music to pop art, cars to spaceflight. You can thus build up a good thematic collection that way and build a story.

Thread: Who enters the competitions?
06/08/2019 06:46:11

I do occasionally enter the competitions, though less so these days as before.

I have won quite a few presentation packs over the years and also a nice hobbyist LED 'daylight' lamp.

I don't collect modern British and as I am never really aware (unless I actually look it up) what the current commemorate sets are it never bothered me whether the packs were current or not. All the packs reside in a box, along with other bits and pieces, taking up space. I have really stopped doing competitions where packs are the prize as, frankly, I never look at them.

I just enter those competitions now where the prize is of interest to me.

Thread: Curious Customs
15/07/2019 07:03:18

Hello Julian, so nice to have you back. You've been truly missed.

Good personal review on these stamps.

I think that they do a good job making folk aware of British customs (I was aware of half of these events). The stamp designs remind me of advertisings of the early 1960s, including some Post Office material of that era.

Sorry Julian, I think that you'll find that Halloween isn't an imported American tradition. In fact, the word Halloween itself comes from the Scottish dialect.


Thread: Penny red help please
07/07/2019 17:35:43

I have to agree with Carmen.

Your comment on my post, for example, came across as priggish. I just ignore comments like yours!

Being assertive can come across as aggressive in forums. Folk shouldn't need to be assertive nor submissive, just friendly.

Folk are here to learn and share, including Julian.

Thread: Plea for Advice
27/05/2019 07:44:07

Visit the Robert Murray Stamp Shop on Inverleith Gardens for advice. Good shop, went there when I was at college in Edinburgh. They should be able to advise you on the collection's value and how to sell it on.

Thread: "Via Andes" on Chilean cover.
29/03/2019 07:24:01

There were two main postal routes out of Chile; north towards Peru and Columbia for Asian / North American mail and east across the Andes to Brazil for European mail. The 'Via Andes' cachet denoted the route to be taken, that is by rail to Brazil and then across the Atlantic. These cachets were first used in the late 19th century. The first airmail service started in 1919 and by the 1920s mail could be flown from Chile all the way to Europe, though the rail / ship route continued for regular mail.

Thread: Franco stamps from Spain
01/03/2019 19:44:03


I don't collect Spain but I do know that the Franco stamps have a few varieties worth looking out for. I would suggest searching for a Spanish stamp catalogue or perhaps seek out the Michel catalogue. I don't think that SG will be of any value when seeking varieties. Even a casual search will show you some differences between the different print runs, eg the printers' initials at the bottom.

Incidentally, I bagged this 'Doctor's Blade' smeared Franco stamp in a charity shop bag of stamps so perhaps another thing to look out for until you get a more detailed catalogue to search for the hidden gems.


Thread: Cancelled mint stamps
29/01/2019 10:49:29

As a stamp collector, I don't mind CTOs that much. However, if I put on my philatelist hat I think that I'd be less inclined to include CTOs in my 'good' collections.

But, looking at things as they stand, this stance is really suited to the older stamp issues. For one thing, less stamp sets were produced in the past. Secondly, more of those stamps were actually used on mail. Today there are so many stamps being produced, in larger sets, that the majority of stamps will never actually see a envelope, let alone a postmark. There are many folk who collect both mint and used stamps, and for many the only way they can have a cancelled stamp in their collection is if it has been CTO by the relevant post office.

I don't collect British stamps, so I don't know if they do CTO nowadays (I know that when I first came to the UK and tried to get some stamps CTO they refused). If this is still the case I don't know where collectors of used British stamps find their examples.

29/01/2019 07:59:19

These CTO (cancelled To Order) stamps were once very common in beginners stamp packs. The Eastern European countries, especially, used to get rid of their surplus stock by applying a post cancellation and selling the stamps off in bulk at less than face value.

When I lived in Germany I would buy new issues at my local German Post Office and buy one mint stamp or set and request to have one set cancelled right there as well. This was popular with European collectors but less so with American / British collectors.

SG used to sell their CTO stamps at a lower price than postally used stamps. If you're talking about older stamps then a properly used stamp will be more desirable than a CTO, and may thus demand a slightly higher premium. However, this doesn't apply to modern stamps. Because of the problems of obtaining modern stamps with postally used cancellations (dealers have to find the stamps in the volumes required, remove them from the envelopes, dry them etc etc) many dealers are going back to buying CTO stamps directly from the postal authorities and selling these as VFU.

At the end of the day, personally, I'd be happy to have a CTO stamp in my collection if a 'proper' used stamp was unavailable and I have many such stamps in my collections.

Thread: Austria stamps
18/01/2019 18:54:59

These OPs were ordered by the local governments of the Austrian states on behalf of the plebiscite commissions. As to their use or validity, perhaps someone else here can help you.

Surprised that you couldn't find them as both Michel and the Austrian Netto specials list them.


18/01/2019 15:17:36

Yep, that is correct.

They are local OPs: Abstimmung in Salzburg, 29 Mai 1921.

Abstimmung means Plebiscite in this case. The overprints refers to the May 29, 1921 plebiscite in the province of Salzburg regarding a proposed union with Germany.

Thread: Philately-Related Christmas Presents
09/01/2019 07:24:43

Nice presents, for sure.

Most beginner sets don't have hinges, just the stock book to slip the stamps in. The hinges, and how to apply them to the stamps and into albums, come into practice a little bit later with many beginners, once they get round to learning the very 'basics' first. I think, though, that hinges have lost their popularity these days in favour of Hawid mounting strips.

(Personally, I don't use neither hinges nor mounting strips. I house my collections in leather German Lighthouse stock books, with black pages and the albums kept in slip cases. I don't write up my collection either; just the stamps set against a black background is all I need to enjoy them.)

Regarding the occupation stamps, they can be put into either a Germany or a Poland collection as they apply to the history of both countries, or as you say, a special occupation section. No hard rules.

Thread: Serbia
21/12/2018 11:55:21

If the stamp is printed on paper it could be from the 1911 - 1914 (or there about) color trails. I have seen these imperforated stamps before which came from unissued stock. Maybe somebody here, who collects Serbia, can advise you further. I'd bet the info would be in a Michel!

As to the Michel catalogues, they are in German (except a couple of countries, including the two volume Germany Special catalogues - which I haven't seen as I can read German). The Michel catalogue for the UK is pretty good and has a lot of detail, more I'd guess than the SG GB special. Michel does provide English translation sheets with their catalogues which helps those with no / limited German and the information is easily obtained once you get to know the Michel abbreviations and such. I no longer use SG as their standard catalogues are basically the same as the Michel youth / children's catalogues, ie very basic information.

Is it suitable for you? Only way to find out, I suppose, is to get one. Maybe an older copy (late 1990s - 2010s) from the likes of ebay just to get the feel of one.

20/12/2018 18:42:26

Yeah, looks like it was cut out from an 1911 postal stationery card.

To be fair, SG only provide the basic information which is why I use Michel most of the time.

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