The UK has produced some of the world's most iconic design work of the 20th Century and the 2009 Special Stamp Programme starts with a celebration of ten British design classics.
This set of 1st class stamps is issued in a colourful block of 10. (Note the design of the Underground map has changed from that shown when this page was created.
Supermarine Spitfire - The superlative Battle of Britain fighter with its distinctive elliptical wings was designed by RJ Mitchell who sadly died before the plane went into production.
Mini Skirt - Mary Quant rewrote the fashion rules for women forever with her daring design.
The Mini - Sir Alec Issigonis made use of every available space in the small car that was as much a fashion statement as a means of transport.
Anglepoise Lamp - flexible design brought light wherever it was needed.
Concorde - Aeropatiale and BAC's supersonic jet was capable of twice the speed of sound and beautiful to look at too.
K2 Telephone Kiosk - Sir Giles Gilbert Scott's design was once a common sight on the streets of the UK.
Polypropylene Chair - Found in public buildings throughout the world, almost everyone will have sat on a Robin Day chair at some time.
Penguin Books - Edward Young's book jacket design was instantly recognizable as a Penguin edition.
London Underground Map - Harry Beck's easy to understand design was based on an electrical wiring diagram.
Routemaster Bus - Once a symbol of London to visitors from all over the world now only a few of Douglas Scott and Colin Curtis's remain on London's streets.
Accompanying the miniature sheet illustrated Prestige Stamp Book has been written by design writer Jim Davies. Inside he takes a look at the each of the design icons and the designers who created them. Click on each pane to see a large image in a new window/tab.
Pane 1: a mixed Machin (four 16p and four 50p surrounding a label featuring a crown from a Gilbert Scott Phone Box;
Pane 2: a pane of four consisting of two Routermaster bus stamps, one Spitfire and one Mini stamp;
Pane 3: a pane of six featuring one of each of the London Underground Map, K2 Telephone Kiosk, Penguin Books, Anglepoise Lamp, Polypropylene Chair and Mini Skirt stamps;
Pane 4: a pane of four featuring two Concorde stamps from this Issue together with two Concorde stamps from 2002 Airliners Issue.
A Generic Sheet consisting of 20 x 1st Class Mini Stamps looks at moments from the iconic small cars history and some of its many variants.
The design icons to be featured were selected after consultation with a panel of experts from the world of design. Designers HGV sourced examples of each of the objects, which were then photographed by Jason Tozer. The images were then digitally manipulated to remove any background clutter and a drop shadow added where appropriate. Finally captions, values and Machin heads were added. The 35mm square stamps were printed by Cartor Security Printers of France in lithography, perf 14½, in sheets of 30/60.
The PSB was written by design
writer Jim Davies, designed by HGV
and printed by Cartor. The Smilers Sheet designed by Magpie and
printed by Cartor in litho.
All stamp and other images are copyright Royal Mail 2008/09.
Set of 10 on Royal Mail First Day Cover
Set of 10 Stamp Cards
Set of 10 Special Edition Cards - stamps against the background of a Union Flag
Smilers sheet -
Prestige Stamp Book
Postmarks available for the day of issue are shown here - others will be added when they are published.
These postmarks cannot be obtained after the date of issue.
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This page updated 1 December 2009
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10 Design Classics Retail Booklet - Phone & Bus
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7 Commemorative Sheet - Cambridge University 800th anniversary
8 Eminent Britons (Europa)
21 Italia 2009 Smilers Sheet
17 Machin Definitives - Signed For
30 Castles of Scotland Smilers Sheet
4 MonacoPhil 2009 Expo Smilers Sheet