Stamp Collecting – Britain’s most profitable hobby.

Once upon a time Britain invented the universal penny post that allowed your for 1d to send a letter anywhere in the UK. Because we invented the service and did the infrastructure properly we became the envy of the world and didn’t even had to put our country’s names on the stamps.

17o years later things haven’t moved on much. The universal penny post has become the Royal Mail but the stamps are the same size and other than perforations, shape as they were when the penny black and twopenny blue were introduced in 1840.

Unfortunately, other things have changed and what’s left of our postal service now mainly handles junk mail and bills , nobody in their right mind would communicate with their mates by letter- far too risky…would it get there?… would it get there unread by snoopy post office workers
?…would it get blown up as a suspect device.

I have just bought my Leonard Cohen tickets for the Hop Farm- £2.50 to get them in the post (or not if they get knicked at the sorting office); £7.50 to get them recorded delivery ; 20p to print out the tickets on the office printer (@ 10p a sheet ).

No one puts things in the post. Consequently, our postal service is losing money and the solution it has come up with is to put up prices by 40%. That’ll help!

However a snag to this cunning plan has emerged. Whereas in the old day we had stamps at 1d and 1/- and £1 and a few other denominations, now we just have stamps which say first class and second class.

Very soon the price for 1st Class stamps for letters weighing up to 100g will increase from 46p to 60p

And the price of 2nd Class stamps for letters weighing up to 100g will increase from 36p to 50p.

So if I buy 1000 first class stamps today and then use them after 30th April , I will save myself 14,000p or a whopping £140.

Nice work is you run a mail order company!

Better still, if I invest in  £460 of stamps I bought today, I can sell them on to my boss who runs a mail order company for £600 , a fortnight later.

Wow- why go to work at all!

Didn’t the doppoes at the Royal Mail think of this?

Clearly not. Not only did they not think of it, but when they did, they decided to alert everyone who had been busy working away that they shouldn’t go down their local posty and buy 100 1st class stamps or else.

Or else what?

For heaven’s sake, is this the organisation whose £14bn pension deficit we’ve just put in our back pocket like a leaking bag of bleach!?

Is this the organisation whose workers have struck more times than Big Ben?

The only reason they haven’t struck recently is that none of us cares any more – we’re all too busy sending e-mails and texts.

Remember – this is an organsiation that took the denomination from the stamps and replaced it with the words “1st class” and “2nd class” to save money!

This is an organisation that has just told its customers that by buying these “first-class” stamps today, they can avoid the price rise tomorrow.

This is an organisation that has just turned philately into a hedge fund.

Yes it is! .

About henry tapper

Founder of the Pension PlayPen,, partner of Stella, father of Olly . I am the Pension Plowman
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1 Response to Stamp Collecting – Britain’s most profitable hobby.

  1. Martin says:

    I went into a PO yesterday to send a package and the clerk made a pretty determined effort to sell me the most expensive delivery product available. She then asked me if I wanted to top up my mobile and if “anyone had spoken to me about life insurance”. Clearly staff are being trained to be more commercial but after that battle I got out as quickly as possible and didn’t even buy the bucket load of stamps I had planned to hoard.

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