Norvic Philatelics

New Machin definitive & Country stamps - 25 April 2012

Royal Mail announced its annual stamp price rises in late March and they take effect from 30 April 2012.  The rate for 1st class stamps is no longer subject to control by the official government regulator (Ofcom) and Royal Mail have been allowed to raise the price of 2nd class mail well above the rate of inflation.

In the biggest rise for decades the cost of 2nd class post rises from 36p to 50p, and 1st class rises from 46p to 60p.  No new stamps will be required for these although logic suggests that the 50p grey with two phosphor bands will be replaced by a 50p with one band.  This may be the rust-coloured stamp which was announced and then cancelled earlier in the year.

Pre-issue images of Presentation Packs of new the Machin definitives.

Presentation Pack Machin definitives 24-4-2012.

   Presentation pack country definitives 25-4-2012 87p & £1-28.
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The Machin Presentation Pack includes the Diamond Jubilee definitive issued 6 February 2012, and the Diamond Jubilee Large Letter definitive which has an official release date of 25 April 2012 but had widespread circulation in early-mid March.

The Country Definitive values are 87p & £1.28 values.  

87p Machin definitive issued 25-4-2012. £1-28 Machin definitive issued 25-4-2012. £190 Machin definitive issued 25-4-2012.
1st Large Jubilee Machin definitive issued 25-4-2012.
England 87p definitive issued 25-4-2012.England £1-28 definitive issued 25-4-2012. Northern Ireland 87p definitive issued 25-4-2012.Northern Ireland £1-28 definitive issued 25-4-2012.
Scotland 87p definitive issued 25-4-2012.Scotland £1-28 definitive issued 25-4-2012. Wales 87p definitive issued 25-4-2012.Wales £1-28 definitive issued 25-4-2012.

Scans of the actual stamps

Sheet of £1.90 stamps issued 25-4-12.

Sheet of £1.90 stamps showing the 12 grid positions at lower left, indicating that there are 12 sheets of 25 per cylinder.

Printing dates seen:

87p   - 08/02/12
£1.28 - 08 & 09/02/12
£1.90 - 09 & 10/02/12

Country stamps:

England 09/02/2012
Others: 10/02/2012

Rate Change Summary - and resulting new stamps

The basic rates for Large Letters increase from 75p to 90p (1st class) and from 58p to 69p (2nd class) - satisfied by the existing NVIs. 

The difference between the 1st class and 1st class Large rates will be 30p (90p-60p) - requiring 2 stamps unless a new 30p is produced.
The difference between the 2nd class and 2nd class Large rates will be 19p (69p-50p) - requiring 4 stamps (10p, 5p, 2x2p) unless the 9p is retained - unlikely as the new 87p is in the same colour. 
The difference between the 2nd class Large and 1st class Large rates will be 21p (90p-69p) - satisfied by the existing 20p & 1p stamps.

The Recorded Delivery fee is increased to 90p from 77p, which means that the (small) letter stamp will rise to £1.50 (from £1.23) and the Large letter to £1.80 (from £1.52).

The lower weight steps for inland packets have been eliminated, and there is now a single price for packets up to 750g.  At £2.70 (1st) and £2.20 (2nd) this is lower than the previous 750g rates but higher than the pevious 500g rates (and around double the previous 100g rates).

International rates also rise at this time:

Basic Europe rate 20gr and postcards: +19p to 87p orange and country stamps.  Earlier 'E' rate stamps still valid, as is the 20gr NVI issued last year and withdrawn on 31.3.12.

Europe 40gr rate increases from £1 to £1.28 new emerald green stamp and country stamps.

Basic Worldwide rate  10gr and postcards: +11p - new stamp  87p orange and country stamps.

Worldwide 20gr rate:  +18p to £1.28, new emerald green stamp and country stamps.

Worldwide 40gr rate: £1.90 up by 25p.   New £1.90 rhododendron/amethyst.

The Surface mail 20gr rate is increased from 66p to 77p, no new stamp has been created.

New Country Stamps valued 87p and £1.28 will be issued for England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales in existing designs and colours.

Effect on the Small Packet rate used by us to send packets of stamps around the world!

Traditionally it has been cheaper to send international Small Packets and Printed Papers, even by airmail, as they were given a lower priority than letters.  Thus at the current rates you can send up to 100g of SP/PP to Europe for the same as a 80g letter, and you can send up to 100g to the rest of the world for the same as a 60g letter.  And if you have a 200g item a packet costs £3.50 worldwide whilst an item containing a letter would be £5.92.

From the end of the month all this changes.  The worldwide rate for small packets and printed papers up to 100g will be the same as that for a 100g letter.  So anything under 80g will be cheaper at letter rate.For Europe a 100g letter will be £2.21, but a small packet or printed paper will be £2.70 - who would send anything at other than the letter rate?  There is no bar on sending non-letters at letter rate, unless there has been a considerable change in the rules.

Over 100g the cost of sending letters, small packets, and printed papers is the same - no cheap rates anymore.  The 200g rate will now be £3.16 for Europe £2.19 at present. Worldwide is once again split into two zones, with Australasia being Zone B and the rest of the world outside Europe Zone A - for all the difference it makes!  At 200g, Zone A costs £4.42 while Zone B costs £4.50.  Even at the maximum small packet weight of 2kg the difference is only just over £1.

Technical information

All the new Machin valued definitive stamps will be self-adhesive, printed by De La Rue in gravure in sheets of 25. There are 12 sheets of 25 per cylinder. They will have security cuts and the irridescent overprint.

The Country definitives will be litho printed on ordinary gummed paper by Cartor Security Print also in sheets of 25.  They will have no security features.

Special postmarks available on the day of issue will be shown here.

FDI postmark 25-4-12.Windsor FDI postmark 25-4-12.Windsor FDI postmark.
London FDI postmark 25-4-12.Edinburgh FDI postmark 25-4-12.Cardiff FDI postmark 25-4-12.Belfast FDI postmark 25-4-12.
London FDI.Edinburgh FDI.Cardiff fdi.Belfast FDI.                  

Ref FD1217 - official pictorial FDI Windsor postmark

Ref FD1218 - official pictorial FDI Tallents House postmark

Ref FD1219 - official pictorial FDI London postmark

Ref FD1220 - official pictorial FDI Edinburgh postmark

Ref FD1221 - official pictorial FDI Cardiff postmark

Ref FD1222 - official pictorial FDI Belfast postmark

And co-located non-pictorial postmarks for all except Tallents House, same
reference numbers with suffix 'NP'
Belfast cds postmark. Cardiff cds postmark. Edinburgh cds postmark. Glasgow 2 cds postmark. Glasgow 10 cds postmark. Birmingham postmark showing national floral emblems.
Ref S6039 - Belfast operational cds postmark Ref W6038 - Cardiff operational cds postmark Ref S6040 - Edinburgh operational cds postmark Ref S6041 - Glasgow 2
operational cds postmark
Ref S6042 - Glasgow 10
operational cds postmark
Ref M12481
Union Street Birmingham
Cardiff postmark. Edinburgh postmark. Belfast permanent postmark. Windsor Castle postmark. Additionally, any postmarks available on this date may also be applied to FDCs
- see Permanent postmarks and Other one-day postmarks
Postmark showing Windsor Castle.
Ref W5097 - Cardiff permanent handstamp. Ref S4653 - Edinburgh permanent handstamp. Ref S4641 - Belfast permanent handstamp. Ref E4680 - Windsor Castle, Royal Mail permanent handstamp Ref M12482
Windsor View, Birmingham

If you wish to be told when this page is updated, please use the ChangeDetection panel alongside the stamps.

This page updated 10 May 2012

2012 stamp issues
Visit our online shop!
5 Olympic & Paralympic Definitives
10 Roald Dahl (author)
20 Year of the Dragon Smilers
2 House of Windsor & Saxe-Coburg
6 Diamond Jubilee MS & definitive
23 Britons of Distinction
24 Pictorial Faststamps - Sheep
8 Classic Locomotives of Scotland MS
20 World of Comics
10 A-Z of the United Kingdom part 2, M-Z
10 RMS Titanic Commemorative Sheet
24 Pictorial Faststamps - Pigs
25 Machin & Country Defins
25 Diamond Jubilee Defins 2
1 James Bond Commem sheet
15 Design Classics, Great British Fashion
24 Union Flag Pictorial Faststamp
31 HM The Queen Diamond Jubilee
18 Exhibition Generic Sheet
19 Charles Dickens
27 Olympic Games Generic Smiler
27 Scotland 1st & 2nd reprint
27 Welcome to the London 2012 Olympic Games
From 27 Olympic Gold Medals
27 Retail booklet
29 Welcome to the London 2012 Paralympic Games
27 Memories of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games
28 Pictorial Faststamps - Cattle
Retail booklet
Commemorative Sheet
 -- World of Dinosaurs ->2013
16 Space Science
8 Christmas


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