Relax folks, this is not a follow up to the James Bond post detailing Pussy Galore, but again it is not really about the Machin Head Profile we all love......... well 99% of us love it! Even the wife has caught the Match-in bug as she pronounces it!
Whist Larry is on the subject of high Values, I thought it may be a good time to reflect on another stamp that was printed in single sheets of 25 (5 x 5) by the House of Questa in offset lithography.
This stamp has the Machin outline head, also known as the Laurel- Leaf bandeau head in profile, normally used on Special issues.
2nd March 1993 was the date that the Royal Mail released the highest face value postage stamp to date. It was needed due to the ever increasing postal rates for overseas parcels and the fact that there was not enough room for several lower values. Strange really as this stamp was actually twice the size of 2 x £5 of the time.
With this stamp came new security features in the form of 4 x ellipse,s (two on the top, two on the bottom, additional features are under short wave UV glowing fibres (red, blue and green) are visible. The stamps also bear an embossed Braille "10" another first as Braille has never appeared on a postage stamp before.
The outer circle of the shield bearing the Union Flag was also printed in fluorescent ink which appears a yellowy green when exposed to UV. On certain stamps from plate 2A only, the wording ten pounds under the figure £10 also glows florescent yellow green.
What I also find of interest is the fact (to match the value) these stamps were printed in 10 colours, which should show in the plate numbers above row one and two in the top left hand corner. Instead of the cylinder block representing the ten colours there is another security feature. These are all printed in the same colour, yes - just one colour - purple.