Island of Culture 2014 and stamp collection exhibition launched

On Monday afternoon Isle of Man Stamps and Coins and key representatives from the Post Office attended the official launch of the Island of Culture 2014 and stamp collection exhibition at the Villa Marina. The exhibition available to the public includes a collection of stamps reflective of eight cultural topics and will last for three weeks.

The collection produced and exhibited by Isle of Man Stamps and Coins showcases its latest issue which has been designed by Manx artist Juan Moore in addition to those with island links produced in the last 40 years. The exhibition is split into the eight themes in line with the latest issue – dance, drama, music, literature, visual arts, design, film and craft.

Towards the end of the launch event Geoff Corkish MBE MLC, Chairman of Isle of Man Post Office presented Hon Clare Christian BSc President of Tynwald and Patron of Island of Culture 2014 with a framed, commemorative set of the stamps with artwork produced by local artist Juan Moore. The stamps are the Isle of Man Post Office’s contribution to Island of Culture 2014.

Geoff Corkish MBE MLC, Chairman of Isle of Man Post Office commented: “2014 will be a vibrant and highly celebratory year. Events held over the duration will be a chance for everyone to celebrate our island of culture through dance, music, theatre, the visual arts, cultural festivals, film and digital innovation and lay a lasting legacy for creativity on the Isle of Man. Juan Moore’s fabulous and outstanding Island of Culture stamp issue further adds to the celebrations. The stamps were specially created and show eight aspects of Manx culture.”

Michael Lees, Island of Culture Director said: “The Island of Culture 2014 stamps are iconic. Juan Moore the Manx artist who was commissioned to design these stamps has caught the imagination in his designs. They depict all aspects of the arts in a way that will appeal to all generations. I am delighted that they have gone on sale throughout the world and will arouse an interest worldwide. His daily blog throughout 2014 will continue the interest in his work and Island of Culture.”

To view and order the Island of Culture stamps please click here

A video introduction with interviews about the stamp issue and Island of Culture 2014 can be viewed here

Island of Culture 2014 will be marked with a set of new stamps

A year-long festival of the arts will be staged in 2014 to mark the Island of Culture and coinciding with the launch on January 6 will be the release of a celebration issue of stamps.

Born and raised in the Isle of Man, Juan Moore is a talented Manxman with degrees in illustration and computer animation respectively. His artwork has found acclaim in exhibitions featured in Cornwall, Wales, London, France and New York. Some of Juan’s artworks are part of both the Isle of Man Arts Council’s collection and the Manx National Art Collection.

His latest work will feature on a set of stamps to celebrate the Island of Culture having been commissioned to produce the new artwork celebrating eight cultural topics – dance, music, drama, literature, visual arts, design, film and craft, by Isle of Man Post Office. The stamps are Isle of Man Post Office’s contribution to the lasting legacy of the Island of Culture 2014 and Juan admits having his work showcased in this way is a real honour.

“It feels so good to have my artwork on the Island of Culture stamps. Art is always something that people have an opinion on and I hope my work will be noticed on these stamps. It is important to me that my work is not only thought-provoking, but that it is accessible to everyone. One of the aims of my work is for it to be as understood by not only those from an art background, but for someone who knows nothing about it” he said.

Juan added: “I generally get my ideas for my art from everyday life and once I have an idea I just paint. I’m a big fan of the white page and don’t always know where my journey is going to take me and what the end result is going to be like until I get painting. I love having something physical at the end of it and I’m really looking forward to seeing the actual stamps when they are issued in the New Year.”

Maxine Cannon, General Manager Isle of Man Stamps and Coins said: “We are delighted to be involved in the Island of Culture and our set of eight stamps, kindly designed by Juan, will be launched in conjunction with the actual launch of the festival on January 6. Culture means different things to everyone but there is set to be something to suit every taste throughout 2014, with a colourful spectrum of events planned by the Isle of Man Arts Council to celebrate the richness of our Island and its cultural scene.”

To view the Island of Culture stamps and to pre-order please click here.

Winter flora features on first miniature sheet of 2014

The talented work of Island-based artist Catherine James is showcased in the first miniature sheet of stamps of 2014.

The stamps capture the beautiful flora of the winter months from rose-hips, red holly berries, fir cones, hellebores to frost-lined ivy leaves.

From a very early age Catherine has enjoyed the love of painting. Being the seventh child in a family of eight children, Catherine found it difficult to be heard amongst the constant chatter so tended to say very little but read as many books as she could find and made drawings on any available paper and spent as much time as possible in the woods and fields of Santon.

In the text which accompanies the miniature sheet Catherine reflects on how bleak the Manx winters can be, wet and cold and how “Manannan’s mantle of mist” can make it difficult to see further than the bottom of the garden. She remembers waking up on many a winter’s morning to windows limned with frost patterns (before central heating) – a magical transformation with the sight of hoar frost-edged leaves, rusty bracken, teasels and sea holly all set against a backdrop of winter lace trees with the glowing colours of rose hips in the hedges. She also recalls the beauty of bright red holly berries with their shining spiked leaves and ivy bowers bearing beautifully aligned fruits that ranged in vibrant colours throughout the cold season.

Commenting on the stamps Catherine said: “I felt very privileged to be asked to design the stamps for the miniature sheet. There is so much beautiful flora in the winter and it’s lovely to highlight this in the stamps. Yes a Manx winter can be cold and dark, but it can be incredibly beautiful. Seeing my artwork in its final form as a miniature sheet is very rewarding indeed.”

Maxine Cannon, General Manager Isle of Man Stamps & Coins said: “We were thrilled Catherine agreed to design one of our first stamp issues of next year. Her artwork radiates a real wintery feel of the flora that surrounds our Island at this time of year however the colours it displays adds a warm, gentle glow.”

To view the Winter Flora miniature sheet and to pre-order please click here.

Isle of Man’s stamp of approval for the arrival of HRH Prince George of Cambridge

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In celebration of the birth of a future heir to the British Monarchy, Isle of Man Post Office is producing royal memorabilia items to mark this key moment in British history.

It follows the news the world had been waiting for, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge saw the arrival of their first child a baby boy on Monday (July 22) at St Mary’s Hospital in Paddington, London. Named George Alexander Louis, the Prince is third in line to the throne and weighed 8lbs and 6oz.

The premium product is the limited edition of 500 Postal Tribute which contains a commemorative cover with gold foil postmark, birth announcement card (fully authenticated) and a mint sheet of stamps, priced £25. There is also a silver-foiled special commemorative envelope available, priced £8.50, which features stamps of the proud parents the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge accompanied by details of the birth of HRH Prince George of Cambridge. A special feature of this product is that there are two unique postmarks namely ‘Royal Avenue’ and ‘Windsor Road.’ Enclosed in the cover envelope is a dedicated information card with a specially-commissioned text by leading royal journalist and biographer Claudia Joseph. The stamps and birth announcement are also available on a sheet priced at £8.

Maxine Cannon, General Manager of Isle of Man Stamps & Coins, said:

“We were thrilled to hear the news of the safe arrival of the Royal baby HRH Prince George of Cambridge. As this is such a historic occasion we wanted to issue royal baby souvenirs in celebration. These products are bound to be popular with collectors of royal memorabilia around the world and I’m sure the news of the royal baby will be one of those moments in your life when you will always remember where you were when you first heard it. We send our warm congratulations to the Royal couple.”

She added:

“We will be sending a special cover to William and Catherine’s home at Kensington Palace as well as to the parents of the four babies who were born on the Isle of Man on Monday (July 22), in celebration that the birth of their child coincided with the much anticipated delivery of the Royal couple’s baby boy.”

Get your royal baby souvenirs now by ordering them online here

‘Magical’ murals showcased on new miniature sheet of stamps

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The work of renowned Manx artist John Miller Nicholson is showcased in a new stamp issue by Isle of Man Post Office in the centenary year of his death.

St Thomas’ Church in Douglas is one of the town’s most hidden treasures. Behind the exterior of the church located on a busy main road lies an awe-inspiring interior decoration of murals hand-painted by a house painting business based in Douglas ran by John Nicholson and his brother James in 1896. So much of what was portrayed was symbolic, such as the vertical decoration on both gables representing the Tree of Life. In the chancel there are angles, musical and flying. The Archangel Michael is shown fighting a many-headed dragon, representing the devil, whilst Archangel Gabriel brings news to Mary that she is to be the mother of God.

Meanwhile either side of the arches in the nave religious symbols abound with the Ark of the Covenant, Golden Candle Stick and the Table of Shewbread. The four evangelists appear as a man, lion, ox and eagle. Next comes the lamb, pelican and dove – being well known representations of the very foundations of truths of the Christian faith.

St Thomas’ Church was designed by Ewan Christian, an architect of Manx decent, who chose the architecture of the 12th century for its style. It opened on 1st August 1849 and in 1882 Canon Savage was appointed to St Thomas’. A keen antiquarian with knowledge of church architecture, he put forward the idea that the church would be enhanced if the walls were decorated in a form appropriate to its style of architecture and so transpired the relationship with self-taught artist John Nicholson.

Often signing his work ‘J.M.N’, John Miller Nicholson was born in Douglas on the 29th January 1840, the son of William Nicholson, house painter and decorator. He was an excellent draughtsman who developed his skills as an apprentice with his father’s firm and through meticulous study of life in the colourful, bustling streets of Victorian Douglas.

Today the murals have undergone some restoration to protect their beauty and are a must-see for anyone who is a fan of Nicholson or indeed is intrigued to see what artistic heritage is in store behind those church doors.

Commenting on the miniature sheet of stamps Reverend Brady of St Thomas’ Church said:

“The stamps are wonderful and they reflect the historical nature of St Thomas’ Church. The murals are almost like hidden gems as many people don’t even know they exist. To have this magnificent artwork showcased in postage stamps is a real delight for our church – the murals are magical and there’s no other church like it for its architecture and internal decoration on the Island.”

The St Thomas’ Church Murals miniature sheet collection is released on August 8 but to view them and to pre-order please click here

Photo: Reverend Ian Brady with the St Thomas’ Church Murals miniature sheet of stamps

Celebrating 225 years of The Times newspaper

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Isle of Man Post Office marks the 225th anniversary of The Times newspaper by commemorating some of the most significant events of recent history reported in this world famous publication.

The Times dates back to 1788 and has covered every news story in history. All the headlines reproduced in this unique new stamp issue, in association with The Times newspaper, capture the drama and immediacy of particular news events flashed across the world.

People of a certain age vividly remember where they were when they heard the news that President Kennedy had been assassinated in Dallas, Texas in November 1963. They can recollect the excitement and pride as England won the 1966 FIFA World Cup Final, dramatically beating West Germany 4-2 in extra time, at the Old Empire Stadium.

People can still talk about watching in awe remarkable television pictures of American Apollo XI astronaut Neil Armstrong stepping down onto the surface of the Moon in July 1969. Residents in the Isle of Man recall with particular pleasure going to a post office and buying the first postage stamps issued by their new independent Postal Authority, in July 1973.

Each one of these key moments in history are featured on the stamps as well as two other significant occasions when the supersonic airliner Concorde retired from service in 2003 after 27 years of service and Her Majesty the Queen’s state visit to the People’s Republic of China in October 1986 when she was shown the iconic Great Wall of China.

The six Newspaper Headlines have been carefully selected and these stamps will appeal to a wide variety of thematic collectors from those interested in aviation, American history, royalty, space, football and postal history.

Maxine Cannon, General Manager, Isle of Man Stamps & Coins said:

“Residents of the Isle of Man, stamp collectors and non-collectors alike from countries throughout the world will find something of interest in this engaging Newspaper Headlines set of stamps. People in the Isle of Man over a certain age will well remember going to a post office and buying the first commemorative and definitive stamps issued by the new independent Postal Authority, in July 1973, 40 years ago.”

Please visit our website at www.iomstamps.com to find out more about our Newspaper Headlines collection of stamps and products and to pre-order.

Team Sky’s Peter Kennaugh MBE receives Tour de France Edition 100 stamps

 

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Isle of Man Stamps & Coins have officially launched their Tour de France Edition 100 set of 8 stamps at an event with Peter Kennaugh MBE. Recently confirmed as a rider for Team Sky, Peter was presented with the stamps and collectors products at a local Isle of Man bike shop which has supported many Isle of Man cyclists over the past 20 years.

 

Peter Kennaugh, who was officially presented with his MBE by the Isle of Man’s Lieutenant Governor, Adam Wood at Government House earlier this week, finished fourth in the National Road Race Championship in Glasgow last weekend, won by fellow Manx cyclist Mark Cavendish. Announced as a Team Sky Tour de France team member just last week, he follows the Manx Missile Mark Cavendish into Le Tour history.

 

Maxine Cannon, General Manager of Isle of Man Stamps and Coins said:

 

“We are extremely proud to have been given worldwide rights to produce exclusive items for Le Tour 100 in recognition of the tremendous contribution of the Isle of Man to the colourful history of the world’s greatest race. For more than 50 years, Isle of Man International Cycling Week attracted a long list of Tour de France riders. We’re delighted to be a part of this global event.”

 

Peter Kennaugh said:

 

“I think the Tour de France stamps issued by Isle of Man Post Office are pretty cool. They really showcase Le Tour and I think it’s great that they always goes to the effort of producing stamps to mark sporting events, achievements and Manx sportsmen. Interest in cycling is massive and is growing all the time around the world. It’s particularly popular on the Isle of Man and I know the Island is 100% behind me in its support as I prepare to take part in this year’s Tour de France – it’s an enormous boost and I feel very proud.”

 

Isle of Man Stamps and Coins will issue a varied range of products during Le Tour to capture instantly cycling history in the making. Please visit our website www.iomstamps.com and social media platforms to get the latest news on all our products on Facebook/IsleofManStampsandCoins

 

Stamps to mark the 100th edition of the Tour de France

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Widely regarded as the world’s biggest annual sporting event, the Tour de France will mark its 100th edition this year.

To celebrate, Isle of Man Post Office is issuing a set of eight postage stamps honouring its greatest champions and the role that Britain and indeed the Isle of Man has played in adding to the colourful history of the world’s greatest race. The issue date is June 19.

Le Tour as it’s now known, started in 1903 with the first British riders taking part in 1937 but it wasn’t until 1958 that the first Briton, Brian Robinson won a stage. Indeed the Yorkshireman has played a key role in bringing the tour to his home country for the Grand Départ in 2014, so there are several reasons why he has been chosen to feature on one of the values.

The Isle of Man has played its part in generating interest in the Tour too. For more than 50 years Isle of Man International Cycling Week attracted a long list of Tour de France riders including Coppi, Anquetil, Merckx, Simpson, Fignon and Roche. Mark Cavendish, the first and so far only Manx rider to compete in the Tour, has 23 stage wins. He won the Green Jersey in 2011 and Bradley Wiggins became the first Britain to win the Tour outright in 2012. Both of these legendary British riders are depicted on the stamps.

The Yellow Jersey first appeared in the Tour in 1919 so that spectators and the press could easily identify the race leader. Frenchman Eugène Christrophe was the first rider to wear the Maillot Jaune.

In its history only four men have won the Tour five times so it’s fitting that they are each honoured with their own stamp in this issue: Frenchmen Jacques Anquetil and Bernard Hinault, Belgium’s Eddy Merckx and Spain’s Miguel Indurain.

There are just eight images from 100 Tours featured in this stamp issue but each one honours one of its greatest champions.

Please visit our website here to find out more about the Tour de France collection of stamps and products and to pre-order.

Robin Gibb Stamps – a ‘deeply moving’ tribute

Robin Gibb stamps - A 'deeply moving' tribute
Robin’s wife Dwina and son, Robin-John

Robin Gibb stamps – A ‘deeply moving’ tribute

The Isle of Man has paid a poignant tribute to one of its most famous Manxmen Robin Gibb CBE yesterday (Wednesday 24th April 2013).

A special launch was held at the childhood home of Robin Gibb and his Bee Gees brothers at 50 St Catherine’s Drive, Douglas in the Isle of Man.

Robin’s wife Dwina and son Robin-John travelled to the Island to celebrate the legendary singer and songwriter by unveiling an emotional postal tribute in which Robin features on a new set of stamps issued by Isle of Man Post Office. While the poignant tribute was unfurled among family, special guests and fans of Robin, the choir of BallakDwinermeen High School sang Ellan Vannin – the alternative Isle of Man national anthem which Robin had deep affection for.

Robin was born in the Isle of Man and was proud to call it his home despite also having lived in Manchester and Australia while growing up. On unveiling the stamps, his wife Dwina described the moment as “deeply moving and fantastic – I love the stamps’, indeed everyone present felt the family’s overwhelming emotion.

She said:

“It was very emotional seeing the enormous picture of Robin but I loved seeing it. Robin was so proud to be from the Isle of Man, he loved its ambience and its people and was always proud to be an ambassador for the Island. If he were here today he’d be immensely honoured to be recognised in this very special way.”

Robin Gibb Stamps – a blue plaque

During the launch, a blue plaque situated above the front door of 50 St Catherine’s Drive, organised by Douglas Borough Council, was also unveiled to officially mark the property as the childhood home of the Bee Gees who became world famous for their hits including ‘Night Fever’, Jive Talkin’, ‘How Deep is Your Love’ and ‘I’ve Gotta Get A Message To You’ to name just a few.

ROBIN GIBBS STAMPS - MT-TV INTERVIEW

Robin Gibb Stamps - A 'deeply moving' Postal Tribute

Click the above picture to watch the Manx Telecom TV Interview with Dwina and Robin-John

Robin Gibb Stamps – Dot Tilbury interview

Dot Tilbury, General Manager of Isle of Man Stamps & Coins, said:

“Today has been immensely special for the Isle of Man. We are proud to say that Robin and his brothers were from the Island and indeed they have been great ambassadors ever since. The postal tribute has been our way of celebrating the life of Robin and his solo career which ties in with the posthumous release of his album entitled ‘50 St Catherine’s Drive’ due for release in the Autumn. In addition, royalties from the special charity stamp product are being donated by the Gibb family to Rebecca House, the Isle of Man children’s hospice which Robin and Dwina opened in 2008. Robin never forgot the Isle of Man and indeed the Isle of Man will never forget him and today has truly shown how deep the Island’s love for Robin is.”

Tribute to Robin Gibb CBE

Tribute to Robin Gibb CBE

Robin Gibb Stamps and Sheets

Tribute to Robin Gibb CBE

The wonderfully colourful, fascinating and showbiz life of singer and songwriter Robin Gibb CBE is celebrated through a new set of stamps reflecting on this legendary Manxman and coincides with the posthumous release of Robin’s album ‘50 St Catherine’s Drive’ later this year.

Described as one of the best white soul voices ever, Robin Gibb is one of the Isle of Man’s most famous citizens. Although worldly known as a member of the Bee Gees along with his two brothers, Robin also carved an impressive solo career. Starting with Robin’s Reign in 1970, Robin created a distinctive body of work separate from the usually more famous Bee Gees recordings.

In the early 1980s, when the Bee Gees took a well-earned hiatus from group activity, Robin pursued his solo work with three more albums (How Old Are You?, Secret Agent and Walls Have Eyes). Award-winning director and producer David Leaf provides the accompanying text to this issue and describes Robin’s last piece of music – The Titanic Requiem, which was composed and created by Robin and his son Robin John. He says on hearing an advance copy of this monumental work he thought “if this was to be Robin’s last musical effort, it was one worthy of his legend.”

Spirit of Love - Tribute to Robin Gibb CBE

Robin will be remembered as a songwriter, a singer, an artist, a man whose slender physique was underscored by his immense determination, personal strength, courage and spirit of love. Robin’s voice was so unlike anything else that graced the radio, timeless and yet somehow, decade after decade, in tune with the times so that he made anything he sang simultaneously sound contemporary classic, epic and now, sadly mythic.

Throughout their career, nobody could figure out where the Bee Gees were from. Some fans were certain they were Australian. Others would say England. When asked, Robin never hesitated, he would answer sweetly and proudly that he was from the Isle of Man.

50 St Catherine’s Drive – Tribute to Robin Gib CBE

Robin’s last solo record, recorded in 2008/9 and due for release later this year, 50 St Catherine’s Drive was given that name by Robin to commemorate his first home on the Isle.

Please visit our website at www.iomstamps.com to find out more about Robin Gibb – 50 St Catherine’s Drive collection of stamps and products and to pre-order.