Royal Mail is unveiling the first in a series of commemorative stamps celebrating the national identities of the UK, designed by Silk Pearce.
Each miniature sheet in The Four Countries of the United Kingdom series contains regional definitive stamps showing the country’s flag, its patron saint and a national landmark. The stamps, created by Silk Pearce design director Gail Russell, will launch on their respective national saints days over the next four years.
The first sheet, Celebrating Scotland, is being launched to coincide with St Andrew’s Day celebrations on 30 November. It will include new illustrations of Scotland’s Saltire flag and of St Andrew, as well as a photograph of Edinburgh Castle. Silk Pearce worked with a range of illustrators to create stylistic variety throughout the collection, according to consultancy creative director Peter Silk.
England’s celebratory sheet, to launch in April on St George’s Day 2007, will feature new stamps showing St George slaying the dragon, the English flag and a photograph of the Houses of Parliament. Sets for Wales and Northern Ireland will launch in 2009 and 2010 respectively.
‘These sheets are ultimately collectors’ items and target those who are interested in the history and culture of these countries. We tried within a limited means to do a final summary of the culture of each country, using four or five images. We then used an image for each country’s flag, patron saint and a landmark,’ says Silk.
Silk Pearce was appointed to create all four sets in July without a pitch. The consultancy has been working for Royal Mail for over 15 years on a number of projects.