A letter from Ian Rose
I read your blog entry about the Machin in printed in silver that you had seen on Ebay. These emanate from a very non-standard se-tenant pane of 9 from the "Across The Universe" prestige book. This pane is laid out as follows:-
1st E 1st
1st label 1st
1st E 1st
No, that layout is not a mistake!! It differs from the issued pane which has E NVI stamps in positions 4 and 6. In addition, all the 1st stamps are in silver. The E stamps are in a drastically darker shade and the shade of the label differs. There are said to be differences in the picture to the left of the stamps, but I have to admit that I did not study it too closely.
I have no idea why this pane was produced in this form. These appeared at around the same time as several other Machins of somewhat doubtful origin such such as the 00p machin colour standards and the unissued £5 photogravure in brown - not blue. One has to suspect that they fell off the back of a lorry belonging to a(n) (in)security printer. I was shown a complete pane by a collector at a Machin Collectors Club meeting. It was said to have been purchased from a dealer in the Strand area -- but I'd better not mention the name as I doubt he would thank me for doing so and I may have the name wrong anyway.
A number of panes appear to have escaped but most seem to have been broken up for singles. Spink auctioned a strip of 3 of the E stamps (E-label-E) some time ago. Another dealer (who may also prefer to remain anonymous) has sold at least two similar strips of E stamps, one of which may be the strip from Spink. There have been a couple of silver 1st stamps offered on Ebay and a few dealers have had them as "under the counter" items.
A modern Machin error specialist had the first that I saw and was, in his usual way, asking a truly staggering price for it. I didn't see any more until a couple of years later but have seen several since. I believe, but am by no means sure, that Doug Myall has stated that these are iriodin ink trials. This seems doubtful. Sorry, Doug, if you said no such thing!
Many thanks to Ian Rose for this detailed information, keep reading as there is also an update from R. Bostock below.
You will no doubt notice that it is not actually December yet! I am starting this post a little ealier due to the fact I am still away in the UK. I have actually bookled a flight back to Spain for the 29th November. I have been posting here when I can, but it is quite awkward using other peoples tools, anyway the point being things will get back to normal very soon.
Nore news of Olympic retail booklets.
Pete Bradley via the comments dept has left a message, he informs us that the second Olympic retail booklet (II) is planned for February 25. He gives no details of the special issues to be used in the booklet at this time. We gave you details of the first booklet here
Pete also mentions that another retail booklet, (format unknown) will be issued on 30th March 2010. Described by Pete as a advertising booklet, it is said that this will bring advance notice (advertise) to the general public details of the forth coming Festival of stamps 2010 which opens in May.
Robert Bostock adds to this and informs us hat the second Olympic booklet will follow very closely the format of the first, only with a change to the special issues. These will be replaced by the Track Athletics and Basketball stamps.
The Festival of Stamps book is a 'label' book, ie the inside front cover carries an advert for the Exhibition which is also mentioned on the usually 'white strip' seen at the right when the book is closed. The covers are red and the book contains six First Class gold definitives by Walsall, if early pictures are anything to go by.
NVI Recorded delivery Signed For
Ian billings has now received supplies of the recorded delivery signed for Machin stamps. These can be found on his website. Well worth a visit as he shows up to date pictures of the actual stamps which includes a close up of the security slits. Printing dates are also shown (19 10 09 1st class ) and (21 10 09 for 1st class large). Adding to this, both cylinder block formats (x 4) are shown.
Other information; just as we thought the background security overprint is pesent but the special hidden codes are not. As with previous stamps from Post office counter sheets it is thought that they are not needed on these stamps, the reason being these stamps will only available from the one source, ie: counter sheets.
visit Ians website here
Please pop back to this page again at a later date , as I will no doubt add to this post when time permits.