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Colin Spong
The President and Committee regretfully announce the passing of Colin Spong on the morning of January 2nd 2021.
Colin was a well respected member of the Society. Members wishing to pay their respects to his family should contact Chris Hitchen by email for details of address and funeral arrangements.
Image shows Colin enjoying a celebratory drink at the Society's 70th Anniversary at Charlecote.
© Mick Bister


Lecho Timbrologie


Once again, Sophie Bastide-Bernadin has featured our Society's Journal in the Bulletins de Clubs column, this time in the magazine's June edition.

She highlights in particular John Courtis's article on the Postal Stationery Wrapper from Great Britain to Senegal, Marc Parren and Martin Bohnstedt's article on the Post Independence postmarks of the Central African Republic, Ashley Lawrence's conclusion to the French Mandates of Syria and Lebanon, Edwin Voerman's study of the Olympic Winter Games issues of 1968 and Richard Broadhurst's report on the 20c Cérès Anniversary issues.

Sophie has unwittingly selected items written by authors from Australia, the Netherlands, South Sudan as well as the UK underlining what a truly international society we are.

JULY 2020

After a short suspension over the last few months due to the current issues, we are pleased to report that both the France and the Colonies Packets are once again up and running. If there are any members who would like to take them again please contact the relevant Packet Secretary. This may be a good time for those who have not taken either of the packets before to join this very popular section of the society where you can take advantage of a wealth of interesting material sent out on a regular basis at competitive prices. Details and contacts of the Secretaries are available here.

French Packet:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Colonies Packet:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Maurice TylerJournal 291 will be the last Journal produced by the current editorial team.

From 1995 to 2015, our editor Maurice Tyler single-handedly produced the Journal. This meant that he took on every role in its production beginning with the vetting of the articles, the formatting of the text, transferring the Word documents into InDesign, shaping the layout ready for the printer and then doing the final proof-reading.

However, his decision to retire in 2015 was thwarted when the newly appointed editor had to withdraw for personal reasons and so was born the position of Journal Manager which I undertook and the creation of a sub-editorial team. Maurice returned as Editor-in-chief with a reduced workload processing the smaller articles and retaining the responsibility of shaping the Journal ready for the printer. Meanwhile, Peter Allan, being likewise proficient in InDesign, took over the processing of the main articles. Other members of the team assisted with formatting, proofreading and offering technical and philatelic advice.

From 1 January 2020, all this is going to change. Maurice is at last going to enjoy his long-awaited retirement. He has admitted that relinquishing his role as editor will be a wrench for him but looking after his health must come first. However, he will continue to make a contribution to the Journal in a different context. Peter Allan has also expressed a desire to retire due in particular to his other philatelic commitments. Peter is editor of the ‘Courrier’, journal of the Tasmanian Philatelic Society, and has recently taken over the presidency of the Australian Philatelic Federation. All this with exhibition judging commitments too!

Finally we bid farewell to Colin Spong who informs us that he has been compiling the ‘List of Recently Published Articles’ column since the 1970s although it was then known as ‘Current French Philatelic Journal Articles’ changing its name to the present title in 1986 when it became a regular feature. However, the column will continue in the capable hands of Maurice. You can’t keep a good philatelist down! We owe Maurice, Peter and Colin a great debt of gratitude. They have selflessly committed a huge amount of time and effort for the benefit of the Society and deserve our heartfelt thanks. Un grand merci à vous tous.

So from next year Jan Gane will be taking over as Editor-in-Chief combining the roles undertaken by Peter and Maurice. I will stay in my post as Journal Manager for the time being but with fewer responsibilities as I need to reduce my workload too. The remaining members of the sub-editing team will be retained for the time being but Jan and I will see how the new management and organisation pans out before deciding any restructuring of it.

Thanks to Jan the continuation and future of the Journal is ensured so please do continue to send me your articles no matter how big or small. Your support is essential. Mick Bister

J291 Dec Page107 PrintedpapersDECEMBER 2019

Congratulations are due to the following members who gained successes at Stockholmia 2019, 29 May - 2 June, in Sweden.
•  Graham Booth: Large Gold in Postal History for ‘The Rise and Fall of the American Merchant Marine as a Transatlantic Carrier 1800-1868’
•  Graham Booth*: Large Gold in Postal History for ‘AngloAustralian Mail 1840-1860: The Transfer from Sail to Steam’
•  Gavin Fryer: Gold in Literature for ‘British Printed Papers by Post 1836 to 1876’ **
•  Leslie Marley: Large Gold in Thematic Philately for ‘A Whale’s Tale
Further congratulations to
•  Graham Booth for his exhibit entitled ‘West Indies & South American Mail Carried by “Great Western”’ which earned him a third Gold Medal at Autumn Stampex 2019.
** ‘British Printed Papers by Post 1836 to 1876’ by Gavin Fryer tells the story of how the GPO services developed when handling mail separated from letters, postcards and parcels. This might include newspapers, books, parliamentary papers, voting papers, patterns and samples, prices current and market reports, election papers, ecclesiastical papers, and others. Members of the armed services also needed special arrangements. This story goes back to the mid 17th century to give readers the context in which very many changes to Britain’s postal arrangements were made during the period 1836 to 1876. The origins of the various postal services are described along with problems encountered by the Post Office and the steps taken to resolve those. The narrative includes extracts from official records and statutes and these are augmented by Tables of the rates of postage within Britain and from Britain to places overseas. 770 pages, hardback with dust jacket. Price £50 includes delivery in the UK; overseas delivery by arrangement. For further details or to make an order contact John Jackson by This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


...STOP PRESS...   STOP PRESS...    

Lot 400

The Catalogue and selected images are available to view here

Will meet on 15 October -  Members’ displays