Sunday, 6 October 2019

Sir Edmund Hillary - A Thematic Collect.

The recent issue celebrating the life of Sir Edmund Hillary got us thinking about this man and his achievements. Allan & Mary knew of some other stamps issued featuring this famous New Zealander and so we decided there might be a possible thematic collection. With their advice, I did some digging. The page below is what I found.
Note - All stamps are New Zealand unless stated otherwise.

1954 Health Issue.
Health stamps were issued with two values, the primary one for postage and a secondary value for funds to support children's Health Camps.
Health Stamps - Part Two.

1954 Tramper - 1½d + ½d.                                      1954  Tramper - 2d + 1d.
 A young tramper, with a map in hand, is depicted gazing across Lake Wanaka with a snow-clad Mount Aspiring rising in the distant background. Since Edmond Hillary had just climbed Mt Everest, a view of this mountain was included in the upper left-hand corner.

Nepalese Sherpa Tenzing Norgay and New Zealander, Sir Edmund Hillary reached the summit of the world's tallest mountain, Mount Everest on 29 May 1953. It would be over 12 months before this feat was recognised on a New Zealand stamp. Even then it appears to be an afterthought with the view of Mount Everest being printed using lithograph printing on each recess-printed stamp. Edmund Hillary is not mentioned on the stamps. 

Sunday, 22 September 2019

2019 Scenic Definitives

Definitive Tour
Back to 2018 Scenic Definitives.                Forward to.......

Adhesive Stamps.                                          Gummed Stamps.

The 2019 Scenic Definitives were issued to accommodate this year’s postal rate increase and are available in a range of gummed and self-adhesive options. They also include a re-issue of the 2016 Scenic Definitives Dunedin Railway Station stamp.

Thursday, 19 September 2019

2019 All Blacks - The Silver Fern.

It is 135 years since the fern first appeared on the breast of a New Zealand rugby jersey. To date, nearly 1,200 All Blacks have worn this now-famous icon. Today the black jersey emblazoned with the iconic silver fern is more than a symbol of pride for Kiwis and rugby excellence for rivals. 
This issue also marks the beginning of the 2019 World Rugby Cup, which was held in Japan with the stamps being issued on the day of the opening ceremony.

1905 Silver Fern.                                                                              2003 Silver Fern.
Over the years NZ Post has issued some very dull and uninteresting rugby stamp issues but this one has proved to be different. The history of the fern, what a great idea. We get to see how the first silver fern has changed and developed into the fern being worn in Japan by the 2019 All Blacks.  
See our thematic collection - Rugby on New Zealand Stamps.

(Images on this page will be replaced as better ones become available.)

Saturday, 14 September 2019

2003 Conquest Of Everest

"Well George, we knocked the bastard off!" With those now-famous words, New Zealander Sir Edmund Hillary announced the conquest of Mount Everest on 29 May 1953.

Se-tenant Pair of two 40 cent stamps.
Have a close look at these photos. Nepalese Sherpa Tenzing Norgay and New Zealander, Sir Edmund Hillary together achieved what no man had ever done before - reached the summit of the world's tallest mountain: the roof of the world.

Tuesday, 10 September 2019

2002 Native Fungi

Unique, essential, extravagant - our native fungi are truly remarkable. They come in an astonishing array of shapes and vivid, even extravagant, colours. Surprisingly, they are not part of the plant kingdom. In fact, in some respects, they have more in common with animals. Their structure is so unique that scientists now put fungi in a kingdom all of their own.

Fungi are essential to the ecosystem of our forests and bush. They decompose dead plant or animal material and recycle minerals locked up in organic material that trees and plants could not otherwise absorb.

Saturday, 7 September 2019

2000 - Threatened Birds


        With the arrival of humans in New Zealand some 1,000 years ago, many of our bird species became extinct and more continue to be threatened by the destruction of habitats, introduction of weeds and animal pests.
        New Zealand has become known for its expertise in threatened species management, including better pest control, extending protected areas on land and sea, and restoring offshore island sanctuaries. This work, which continues to be done, has had a marked effect on re-building the populations of these national treasures.
        This stamp issue featured six New Zealand and one French threatened bird, including one of our national icons - the kiwi – and the world’s heaviest and the only flightless parrot – the kākāpō. The New Zealand birds were selected with the assistance of the Department of Conservation.

Friday, 6 September 2019

2019 - Ross Dependency: Cape Adare

One of the harshest environments on Earth, Cape Adare is located 780km north of Scott Base. It was here, in 1894, that humans first set foot on the Antarctic mainland, and who in 1899 built the first Antarctic base.
Before the world had heard of Scott and Shackleton, a group of 10 young men from Norway, England and Australia spent a year at Cape Adare. They paved the way for the more famous explorers who followed, and the 2019 Ross Dependency stamps recount their rarely-told story.

The Cape Adare base centred around two prefabricated wooden huts and was used just twice. After 1912, it was abandoned for more than a century to the harsh extremes of the Antarctic climate and a babble of the penguins. But the original huts stood firm, sheltering the food, clothing and equipment left behind by Antarctica’s earliest residents. This latest Ross Dependency stamp issue tells the story of these huts through five key artefacts recently collected by the Antarctic Heritage Trust (AHT).

Thursday, 29 August 2019

2019 Moon Landing 50 Years

 In 2019 the world celebrated 50 years since the first Moon landing. NZ Post was involved in three separate issues that marked this event. All 12 stamps, from three different stamp issues and three different postal administrations, are shown in this post along with miniature sheets and First Day Covers.

Four stamps from the New Zealand 3D Lenticular Miniature Sheet.

Sets issued by Niue and Tokelau.
Yes, we know this is a blog on New Zealand stamps but these two issues were too good to pass up.

Tuesday, 6 August 2019

2019 China World Stamp Show

        The China 2019 World Stamp Exhibition was a celebration of the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China. It was held at the Wuhan International Expo Center from June 11-17, 2019. A total number of exhibits reaching 3,500, and it attracted philatelists from more than 80 countries and regions.
        New Zealand Post has created a special miniature sheet and first-day cover to commemorate this exhibition, featuring 2019 issue Native Alpine Flora.  

Exhibition Miniature Sheet with two $1.20 and one $2.40 stamp. 
(Surcharged $2.00 to fund Philatelic Trust for hobby support.)

Wednesday, 24 July 2019

2019 Kupe - The Great Navigator

Throughout the Pacific region, Kupe is the navigator credited with bringing the knowledge and data back to the Pacific that enabled the eventual population of Aotearoa. This issue explores the adventurous legend of Kupe’s pursuit of a great octopus and the ways of Polynesian navigators who used the sky and ocean to guide their journeys between the islands of the Pacific.
You might also like my post - Kupe and The First Maori Settlers.
For other posts on Maori culture & legends see our Index - New Zealand Maori.

Tuesday, 23 July 2019

Rocket Lab.

A thematic collection of postal items and images featuring USA/NZ company Rocket Lab.

Rocket Lab was founded in 2006 by New Zealander Peter Beck, with the aim of developing lightweight, cost-effective and high-frequency rocket launch services. It soon became clear that more funding and support was needed than could be found in New Zealand so Peter turned to the USA space industry. Rocket Lab became a USA company with a New Zealand subsidiary. While the company is run from the USA, much of the rocket manufacturing and launches are based in New Zealand.

On 25 January 2018, Rocket Lab burst into the world of stamps with this impressive miniature sheet. The sheet, designed and issued by NZ Post, included a background image by Sam Taylor, of Napier and six stamps featuring stamps supplied by Rocket Lab.

Monday, 1 July 2019

2000 - On the Road - Classic Cars

Do you know any of the cars on this page? Maybe driven one or owned one. Don't say 'yes' too loudly as you will probably be showing your age.

Tuesday, 25 June 2019

2003 Scenic - Waterways

Water surrounds our nation and criss-crosses our countryside in a myriad of rivers, lakes and streams. It offers recreational opportunities and is transformed to generate most of our electricity supply. It yields an abundance of fish for our tables and sustains a tourism industry second to none. In short, it is part of our lifeblood - essential to our economic, social and environmental wellbeing.

The 2003 Scenic - Waterways stamp issue celebrated our waterways, particularly in light of two very special occasions - the United Nations International Year of Freshwater and the 50th anniversary of the Photographic Society of New Zealand.

Monday, 24 June 2019

2019 Sir Edmund Hillary 1919-2008

In 2019 New Zealand commemorates 100 years since the birth of Sir Edmund Hillary. These stamps celebrate key moments in the remarkable life of one of our greatest heroes.

The five stamps.

The enduring nature of Sir Ed’s legacy is that we see him as the embodiment of so many of the attributes that we like to see in ourselves. In our somewhat complicated and contradictory way, we saw him as both humble and successful, considerate and determined, accommodating and focussed, down-to-earth and highly talented.
In many ways, Sir Ed’s greatest strength was his ability to reinvent himself. And he did this throughout his long and remarkable life; new expeditions, new projects, new responsibilities. Sir Ed wrote books, made films and became the New Zealand High Commissioner to India. But there was always something that stood out, and that was his commitment to New Zealand. He was an extremely generous man, and he derived great pleasure from the successes of others. Simply, he wanted the best for the country and the people he loved.

Thursday, 20 June 2019

2019 Colin McCahon 1919-1987

Five Paintings by Colin McCohon.

Born in 1919‚ Colin McCahon grew up in Dunedin‚ always knowing he would be a painter. The distinctive power and originality of his images would make McCahon a giant of New Zealand painting, and today he is recognised internationally as one of Aotearoa’s most significant artists.

Tuesday, 4 June 2019

Aviation in the Ross Dependency

         The 2018 Ross Dependency issue featured aviation in the Ross Dependency. This got me thinking about how many other stamps feature aviation as well. Why not group them into a thematic collection? Not limiting myself to just Ross Dependency stamps I have included other New Zealand issued stamps from NZ Post and Antarctica Post too. Please note that while many stamp issues are mentioned only stamps that actually show aircraft will be included in this collection.

1958 - The First Trans-Antarctic Crossing.
While this set of stamps didn't show any aviation the special cover did. On the cover below three types of vehicle used during this exhibition - husky pulled sledges, tracked vehicles and a DHC-2 Beaver. Another view of this aircraft can be found in the 2018 Ross Dependency issue.

1957-58 - First Trans-Antarctic Crossing - Commemorating Cover.
The stamps are the 1957 Ross Dependency Pictorials, an issue designed for use by the expedition and then used by the newly established Scott Base. 

Monday, 6 May 2019

2002 Children's Book Festival Stamps.

They say a picture paints a thousand words, but words, in turn, inspire pictures? That was the challenge for more than 2,300 schools in the 2002 New Zealand Post Children's Book Festival 'Design a Stamp' competition.
Primary and intermediate students throughout New Zealand seized the opportunity to design a stamp based on one of the finalists in the New Zealand Post Children's Book Awards. Choosing from three categories - picture book, junior and non-fiction - each child or class endeavoured to create a 'mini artwork' to fit the small stamp format.
The remarkable results led to this unique stamp issue. A national competition decided the 10 winners, whose ages range from five years to twelve years and whose homes span the length of the country.

Miniature Sheet.

Tuesday, 30 April 2019

2019 Lighthouse Perspectives

Ever since the first voyagers arrived from Hawaiki, New Zealand’s rough coastline and changeable weather have proved both a risk and a challenge to those attempting to make land. Oral histories indicate that many waka were wrecked as the first people discovered New Zealand’s shores. Over 1,500 shipwrecks were recorded in the 19th century alone, causing upwards of 2,000 deaths. The New Zealand government was eventually convinced to act, and lighthouses began to form a significant presence in Aoteoroa by the 1860s.

This issue takes a look at some of those lighthouses from a new point of view, a new perspective you might say. Lighthouses are usually located at harbour entrances, on islands, wild windy capes or other places of scenic beauty. While other lighthouses stamps have shown views of the lighthouse, this issue shows the view from inside the lighthouse. The metal frames of the glass windows form a pattern across each stamp.

Thursday, 25 April 2019

2004 Garden Flowers II

What is it about gardening that makes it among the most popular physical activities in New Zealand? Is it the chance to enjoy the great outdoors while staying close to home? The satisfaction of seeing extraordinary beauty bloom from the plainest of seeds? Or merely the simple pleasure of hard work rewarded?

Whatever the reason, New Zealanders are garden-lovers on a grand scale, whether they are tending their own blooms or enjoying the fruits of others' labour in the many public botanical gardens and private estates open to view.

Tuesday, 23 April 2019

2004 150 Years of Parliament

If you either lived in or have visited New Zealand's capital city, Wellington, you can't fail to have heard about (and no doubt visited) our Beehive. It's a hub of political influence - the centre of operations for the Executive Wing of our parliament, and a highly distinctive landmark on Wellington's physical and political landscape.
Completed in 1981, the Beehive is the newest of our parliamentary buildings. It was also a feature of 150 Years of Parliament stamp issue. These five elegant stamps, miniature sheet and first-day covers recalled the buildings that have housed our government representatives ever since the first parliament was established in 1854. They were a pictorial guide through a history of architectural styles that have spanned Victorian Gothic to 'modern classical brutalist' - an intriguing label that somehow aptly conveys the Beehive's essential qualities!

Whether made of wood or concrete, and whether they are still standing or but distant memories, these buildings have played a vital role in New Zealand's history either politically or architecturally. It is fitting, therefore, that we issued the stamps 150 years after the first parliament was elected in this young and vibrant country - and remember the many generations of parliamentarians who have worked so hard in the nation's interests.
New Zealand took its first important steps towards democracy when the first official parliament assembled in what was then the capital city of Auckland. Its representatives were tasked with an important and influential role: making the laws that would govern this relatively young country, and keeping the work of government under scrutiny and review. The 1854 Parliament commenced with 37 members. Since then, times and demands, like the number of members - now 120, have changed dramatically, with inevitable and significant effects on parliamentary accommodation.

Monday, 22 April 2019

2004 Extreme Sports

Throwing caution to the wind, people are defying Nature's extremes in the search for an adrenaline-packed, spine-tingling, often absolutely terrifying adventure and they're finding it in a tiny country that has become known as extreme New Zealand.
New Zealand's geography offers everything an extreme sports fanatic could ask for - huge skies, rushing rivers, pristine snow and much, much more. 

In 2004 NZ Post offered this five stamp issue that celebrated some of our daring extreme sports as well as providing a way of promoting these sports to tourists. People from all over the world have come here seeking the adventures New Zealand has to offer.

Sunday, 21 April 2019

2004 World Of Wearable Arts

The wonderful Montana World of WearableArt (WOW) Awards Show is celebrated every year. Ever since its first appearance in Nelson in 1987, WOW has electrified audiences and critics alike. NZ Post said, "Today, it is an internationally acclaimed seven-night theatrical extravaganza - an achievement we applauded with this gorgeous range of five new stamps."

2004 Wearable Art set Used.

Saturday, 20 April 2019

2004 Historic Farm Equipment

Historic Farm Equipment - Used set.

         Agricultural economies the world over have been transformed with the advent of new technology - from the basic wheel to the sophisticated machinery that today turns products of the land into commercial commodities.
        New Zealand is no exception. One hundred years ago, a Christchurch-based company imported the country's first farm tractor: an American Kinnard Haines Flour City machine, capable of speeds up to five miles per hour. However, the new-fangled contraption was initially treated with some suspicion, with many farmers remaining unconverted until Henry Ford's mass-produced and more affordable Fordson arrived on the scene in 1918.
         Since then our agriculture industry has continued to invent and adopt increasingly advanced machinery - a characteristic we celebrated with our Historic Farm Equipment stamp issue which marked a centenary since the arrival of the tractor to New Zealand – an event that signalled a permanent change to our landscape and our place in the global agricultural industry.

Monday, 15 April 2019

2004 Unusual Issues.

During 2004 there were four stamp issues that were a bit different to NZ Post's usual issues. Since these are often not included in many catalogues and therefore many collections, we thought it might be an idea to group them together on this one page.

Sunday, 14 April 2019

2003 Royal New Zealand Ballet 50th Anniversary.

I've always enjoyed the Ballet but living in a rural area not always get the chance to attend every show. On the internet, that of course, has changed. There is a lot on UTube worth watching and on other sites too. But there is still something special about a live show.
       Many struggle to understand and enjoy ballet. I think other media such as movies and television have played a role in this by giving people a ready-made story complete with realistic scenes etc. There is no imagination involved. No chance to sit back and enjoy the skills and beauty that is found watching ballet. In the labels to the right, I have selected this as being a performing art as I believe that it is.


         Since its creation in 1953, the Royal New Zealand Ballet has always displayed evidence of the kiwi spirit. Today it continues, especially in the eclectic range of dance styles. From classic nineteenth-century productions to contemporary performances which continue to push the boundaries of modern dance. 
        In addition to this anniversary issue, New Zealand Post sponsored the company's nationwide tour New Zealand Post Tutus on Tour. In 2003, the Royal New Zealand Ballet - a corps of 32 accomplished dancers with an extensive repertoire - commemorated its birthday with a 50-centre tour of New Zealand's small-town communities from Kaitaia to Invercargill. It was a dance celebration packed with classical and contemporary ballet sequences, a testament to the people who are the backbone of the company's success.