The first meeting of the Season coincided with the first Guest Speaker of the Season,
when Mr Philip Lee gave us a presentation on the subject of Stamps of Japan. For
a number of years, Mr Lee had been based in, and travelled to, Nagoya, on behalf
of a number of Japanese companies, which gave him an excellent opportunity to collect
a wide range of Japanese postal and cinderella material.
The presentation opened with a display of a wide range of postal stationery, particularly
featuring New Year Greetings cards from the 1930s onwards. Included among these were
examples of cards and stamps issued with lottery numbers. A complete sheet of stamps,
offered as a departure gift, proved to contain one stamp with a winning number. Now,
this is a complete sheet of mint stamps with the exception of one which has been
Next we saw a series of Season’s Greetings and first Flight covers for a number of
routes to and from Japan, and material sold and struck with special cachets from
various tourist destinations. Finally, we were introduced to the wide range of art
styles used on Japanes stamps including a marked delight in cartoon characters.
The theme for the evening was our ever-popular Alphabet Chase, but on this occasion
the chase had met in the middle of the alphabet, with the letters being ‘M’ and ‘M’
Approriately, Mr Marten opened proceedings with a display entitled ‘My Family and
other Animals’ the subject of an exam he had once taken in Swahili. Featured were
Martens, Monkeys, Marmosets, Moles, Marsupials, Manatees, Musquash, Molluscs and
Mr Patterson moved us to the Morocco Agencies, from the time of George V to the closure
of the Agencies under Elizabeth II.
Mr Kipps took us on a gentle meander through a few Motoring Museums n Hungary, East
Germany, France, Portugal, Andorra and our own Midlands: the Mold Motor Museum at
Stratford on Avon.
Mr Robinson reMinded us of Memories and Malta, taking us from the times of the Knights
of Malta, when postal services started there, through the period of Napoleon, up
to the colonial period.
Mr Koller mentioned that he was not memorable only for birds of prey; we learned
much about the breeding and incubation habits of migratory Merkins, followed by Martial
The evening closed with a miscellany from Mr Stuttard, a marvellous melange starting
with Mulreadys, and a monograph on ‘More to Pay’ markings, moving through Matthews’
Miniature sheet for Midpex, to a Map of Montenegro. He concluded by proving that
only Smarties have the answer!
1st November 2011
We were pleased to welcome the (temporary!) return of our former Member Mr Robert
Flamman who took us on a journey from the Black Forest to the Black Sea, via the
Our journey started in the Kingdom of Wurttemburg where two tributaries feed into
a well at Donauschingen, which is said to be the source of the Danube. Covers, postcards
and Postal History from towns and cities along the way marked our progress until
we arrived at Ulm, with its cathedral and 560-foot spire. Next, we moved into Bavaria,
visiting the Mainz-Donau Canal, known irreverently as ‘Charlemagne’s Ditch’ Regensburg
was next on the list, the name apparently due to the fact that it rains more there
even than Manchester! We saw a variety of postcards addressed to Ulm, including one
from Amsterdam with the stamp at the left, as required by contemporary regulations.
Ship mail was carried by the Donau Dämpfer Fahrt Gesellschaft, and we saw how much
of this comprised letters which, sent as packets, went more cheaply - until the national
post office realised! Passing Linz, we saw how Austria was absorbed by the 3rd Reich,
as were the provinces of Bohemia and Moravia. Hungary came next and we visited Buda,
Pest, Estergom, and Vac, where the prison authorities had a novel way of controlling
overcrowding: when a new prisoner arrived, they simply hanged or shot the longest
serving inmate. Problem solved. Our last call was to see the storks of Romania which,
it is said, accounts for the large number of children in that country.
6th December 2011
Last year, we went to the Royal Clifton Hotel for our Club’s 80th Anniversary Dinner.
We enjoyed the proceeding enough to repeat the process this year. An excellent meal
was followed by an illustrated presentation by Mr Stuttard of cards and other items
proving that everything is related to everything else. A great evening!
3rd January 2012
The January meeting saw us welcome Mr Adrian Jones from Chorley who gave us the first
part of his presentation on ‘Errors and Varieties’ and proved that it is still possible
to make philatelic ‘finds’ such as a sheet of stamps from Nigeria, with greatly misplaced
perforations, found in the back of an auction lot!
Errors can consist of missing or misplaced colours or perforations, or the use of
the wrong colours or perforations. They can also include problems arising from the
printing process itself. We were shown examples of Harrison’s GB £5 ‘Castle’ stamps,
catalogued in only one colour, with three quite distinct variations. Examples of
British commemorative stamps from the 1960s and 70s showed a range of missing colours,
doctor blade flaws, and flaws due to faults on the printing cylinders. A range of
varieties was shown where design features are accidentally (?) added, deleted, or
altered, such as the well-known missing £ sign.
We were shown a range of forgeries of stamps, cancellations, and sometimes both together.
We learned about some famous forgeries, for example the 24p Machin, the products
of the Maryland forger, and those of Fournier, the master forger. Overprints, too,
are a good source of E&Vs, and we saw examples from the Nyasaland Field Force with
a missing ‘F’ and stamps from Zanzibar after the revolution when obliterating the
Sultan’s head just became too much trouble!
All in all, a great evening, and no mistake!
Calendar for the 2011-2012 Season
To make things clearer, we've colour coded the type of meeting:
 Blue is for regular Members' Evenings,
 Green is for Evenings where a visiting speaker will make a
 Red is for the AGM.
6th September 2011 The Season opens with our first Guest Speaker of the year. Mr
Philip Lea will introduce us to the philately of the Empire of the Sun - Japan -
an area often overlooked because of the difficulty with the language!
4th October 2011 This evening is the first of our Members' Evenings for the year.
The theme is entirely open, but there must be some connection with the letters 'M’
and ‘M’. In case you are wondering, they are both the same, so the evening will be
a double challenge!
1st November 2011
What could be more pleasant than an extended river cruise? This evening, our former
member Mr Robert Flamman will take us from the Black Forest to the Black Sea by way
of the Danube. Blue? We’ll see!
6th December 2011 We all enjoyed our 80th Anniversary Dinner last year, so this
year we will combine our December meeting with a pleasant Dinner, and Ralph Stuttard
will entertain us in his own inimitable Philatelic style.
3rd January 2012 Our third Guest Speaker of the year is Mr Adrian Jones, from Chorley,
who will be introducing us to the world of Errors and Varieties, Part I. This should
be a fascinating presentation, and no mistake!
7th February 2012 There are many and varied reasons why we, individually, collect
stamps, and within our collections are stamps or sets which we particularly like.
This evening we will Show, and Tell the reasons why.
6th March 2012 Our meeting this evening is one of those where we enjoy two separate
presentations from our members. Ian Koller will extend our knowledge of Philatelic
Ornithology, while Chris Leather will present a review of Commonwealth War Tax stamps.
3rd April 2012COMPETITION EVENING
The Competition this year is for the John Winter Trophy. Entries for this competition
should consist of twelve sheets of stamps and philatelic material, used to develop
a specific theme.
1st May 2012 THE ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
Not just the AGM, but also the Club Auction, where the success of the sales can have
a marked effect on the subscription for the coming year!
12th June 2012 The final meeting of the Season is our Postcard Evening and this
year we will be paying tribute to our great heritage by displaying cards featuring
anything to do with industrial activity.
Journal for the 2011-2012 Season
A Narrative Account of our Season
Archive for the 2011-2012 Season
The Calendar and Journal of our Meetings
Even though our previous years’ programmes are now history, it can be interesting
to look back at the wide range of speakers and presentations which have both educated
and entertained us.
Here is the Archive for 2011-2012
To read the narrative Journal for any meeting, just click, and we will take you directly
7th February 2012
There are many and varied reasons why collectors collect what they do, but somewhere
among the albums, shoeboxes and stockbooks, lie some items which are regarded with
particular favour. This evening, our members showed some of their favourite items.
Miss Taylor started the evening with a display of covers with silk panels, and stamps
and cards with a range of interesting and artistic portraits.
Mr Koller brought in some excellent representations of Kestrels and sparrowhawks,
and explained differences in ornithological terminology between the UK and the USA.
Mr Thompson analysed the reasons for collecting, and after 59 years of practice,
confessed that he still isn’t sure, having followed the usual path from collecting
the general to collecting the specific.
Mr Patterson’s interest in foreign stamps started with a Dutch refugee during WW2,
which led him to recall anecdotes about stamp dealers from Manchester, and display
albums featuring King Farouk and stamps from Egypt.
Mr Marten’s collecting interests lie with stamps from countries where he has lived
and worked, which include East Africa, South Africa and the Seychelles.
Mr Stuttard’s interest was triggered by decimalisation, and his first speciality
was GB Penny Reds, especially those with underprints and overprints.
Mr Smith has ‘always collected,’ originally coins then stamps of the French Empire.
His ambition would be a car trip through North Africa, collecting on the way.
Mr Esmat looked at the idea of ‘churning’ one’s collection, continually moving on
and starting something new - hopefully at a profit!
Mr Kipps reported being overawed by the material of the ‘old hands’ when he joined
the Club, which took him in a totally different direction: Motoring thematics.
Mr Bretherton concluded with an interest in Natural History, especially in the huge
range of stamps featuring butterflies.
6th March 2012
The March meeting was divided between two presentations by our own members, Mr Koller
and Mr Leather.
Mr Koller described his presentation as Philatelic Ornithology, with a review of
birds of prey which have appeared on philatelic material. There is a lack of clarity
as to the actual number of species which fall under this description, sometimes said
to be 192 but almost certainly more. We were treated to a spectacular display of
some spectacular creatures, ranging in size from the Merlin and the Sparrowhawk,
to the American Bald Eagle and the Andean Condor. All in all, a feast for philatelic
Mr Leather had originally intended to exhibit a collection of War Tax stamps from
the period of the First World War, but in the event this was replaced by a series
of Tales from the Air Mails. The development of some early airmail routes, and the
problems encountered by the crews, were represented in the mails which were carried.
The final long distance challenge proved to be the transatlantic service, which was
introduced in summer 1939 just in time to be suspended due to the outbreak of the
Second World War.
3rd April 2012
The April Meeting has become, almost traditionally, the Competition Evening. The
Club is the possessor of three magnificent trophies, which have been donated over
the years by generous members. We now compete for one of these each year, which means,
of course, that each trophy is competed for every three years. This evening, we were
putting forward thematic displays of all types with the hope of winning the John
Marks are assigned to each display in three categories: the knowledge and information
shown in the writing-up of the display; the development of the chosen theme, and
the condition of the material shown. The displays are then judged, anonymously, by
the members present, and the marks totalled up. The highest score wins, and this
year, the trophy was won by Mr Koller.
1st May 2012
Every Club needs an AGM and ours is no exception. This takes place during the May
meeting, when we take reports from the officers, and decide on minor matters such
as the annual subscription!
Mr Stuttard represented the Club at the meeting of the North West Federation of Philatelic
Societies in January. The NWFed represents the interests of clubs and societies throughout
the North West of England.
The Treasurer reported that the Club had had a good year, due in no small part to
the effectiveness of Mr Hyde as Club Auctioneer. As a result, it was agreed that
the subscriptions could remain at £10 per year which works out at £1 per meeting!
The accounts were submitted to the members, and after the appropriate scrutiny were
This year, there were a couple of changes to be made to the Club’s Officers. The
President, Mr Hoey, and the Secretary, Mr Leather, both indicated that they would
like to step down due to the pressures of other commitments. The Chairman, Mr Hyde,
expressed appreciation for the efforts of the retiring officers. Mr Koller has volunteered
to take over as President from Mr Hoey, and Mr Bretherton will succeed Mr Leather
A vote of thanks was offered to Mr Kipps for his work as Treasurer, and to Mr Stuttard
for auditing the accounts.
Mr Hyde then conducted this year’s auction, with his usual considerable degree of
12th June 2012
The last meeting of the Season looked at collections and displays of postcards from
our members, on the subject of industrial activity.
Miss Taylor opened proceedings with a series of advertising cards from the 1920s
and 1930s featuring the artistic styles of the period, and promoting everything from
Cadbury’s Cocoa to Doctor’s Special Rum, via Benedictine and Pear’s Soap.
Mr Kipp’s cards could hardly have been more different, with visits to a hat works,
the Festival of Britain, and the Clifton Suspension Bridge.
Mr Koller showed us material relating to the Liverpool to Manchester Railway, Post
Office cards advertising Royal Mail, and the film ‘Night Mail,’ and a card showing
a postman on a bike, legs raised, avoiding the attack of some mutt or other!
Mr Leather showed a collection of Victorian business related cards, including the
despatch of two wagon loads of coal to an hotel, and a card from a customer confirming
the safe arrival of a flagon of Scotch Whisky, which would be returned when empty.
Mr Stuttard concluded the evening with a number of Benham-style cards featuring various
British industrial themes: cars, toys, textiles and others. In the Victorian and
later periods there were many and varied exhibitions with industrial themes, and
we saw cards from the 1908 Franco-British Exhibition (held at the same time, and
next door to the first London Olympic Games!) Palace of British Industry, and the
1924 and 1925 British Empire Exhibitions’ Palace of Engineering.