For customers who would prefer secular stamps to religious stamps, Royal Mail has issued extra 1st class and 2nd class designs this Christmas, based on paintings by primary school children.

The winners of a competition launched in the summer were Molly Robson, aged 7, and Rosie Hargreaves, aged 10.

A staggering 240,000 entries were whittled down to 120 regional finalists and then a shortlist of 24 national finalists by a judging panel which included the Prince of Wales, Lauren Child, the author of the Charlie & Lola books, and Tasveer Shemza, who was six when she designed a stamp for Royal Mail’s first ever Christmas issue in 1966.

Also on the panel were Royal Mail’s Chief Executive, Moya Greene, and Head of Stamp Design, Marcus James.

The two winners were invited to a prize-giving event at Clarence House, the Prince’s official London residence, on October 30, to be presented with a framed copy of their stamps, which were issued on November 5. 

The girls also won £1,000 in vouchers for themselves, and £1,000 for their schools. 

This is the third time Christmas stamps have been designed by children, after a set of two in 1966 and a set of five in 1981.

2nd class Singing Angels

Rosie Hargreaves, aged 10, painted three singing angels in a sky full of stars. Her school is Ermington Primary School in Ivybridge, Devon.

1st class Santa

Molly Robson, aged 7, painted a bright and glittery image of a smiling Santa amid a pile of presents. She attends Leechpool Primary School in Horsham, West Sussex.