October 2020

Issue: 5

Volume: 51

In this month’s issue of Gibbons Stamp Monthly George James tells us why the ‘Gilmer’ cover is so important to both Malayan and Indian philately, Derek Connell rounds off his very own fantasy philatelic festival and Noel Davenhill explores the philatelic history of Barbados.

Contents October 2020

Contents to Volume 51, Number 4


The latest news from around the philatelic world.

Society News

More reports from the nation’s philatelic societies.

Auction Dates

Forthcoming auctions.

Around the Houses

Your monthly roundup of recent auction results.

The 'Gilmer' Cover: A unique new discovery with a fascinating history

George James, Head of Commonwealth at Stanley Gibbons, tells us why this cover is so important to both Malayan and Indian philately.

New Collector

Richard West looks back at some of the different ways Royal Mail has promoted new stamp issues to the press, which range from the very simple to the exclusive.

GB News

We put Royal Mail’s Sherlock Holmes and Rupert Bear issues under the magnifying glass.

Great Britain: Victorian Mixed-Franking Covers

In October, a new book will be released which tackles the transient nature of early British stamp design. Ray Simpson gives an insight into the development of the book, from concept to completion.

Machin Watch

John Deering turns philatelic super sleuth to find out what the new Sherlock Holmes issue has to offer and investigates the case of a 2p Machin with an inset iridescent overprint.

The Stamp Show That Never Was: Part 3: A Celebration of London 2020

Derek Connell rounds off his very own fantasy philatelic festival with a final collection of memorabilia from his would-be exhibition.

GB Specialised Supplement

The latest supplement to the Stanley Gibbons Great Britain Specialised Catalogue.

British Colonial and Protectorate Stamps Part 24: Barbados

Noel Davenhill explores the philatelic history of Barbados as he returns with another instalment in his ongoing series looking at the stamp issues of former British colonies and protectorates.

Pierre Gandon: The Marrianne Master: Part 2

We take a look at some of the later issues of the prominent French stamp designer, Pierre Gandon.

Ceylon: The 1881 Telegraph 'Pearl Fishery' Cancellation

We look at some rare c.d.s. and manuscript pearl fishery telegraph postmarks which only existed for one short season in 1881.

Denmark: The 1920 Reunification Issue

A century after Northern Slesvig was returned to Denmark following World War I, Lars Jorgensen provides an in-depth study of the stamps issued to mark the reunification.


Hot on the heels of Royal Mail’s release of new stamps celebrating the world’s most famous detective, Jeff Dugdale uses past stamp issues to revel some of Sherlock’s most popular stories.

Delivering the Mail: Part 2: Delivery by Postmen on Foot

We join John Davis FRPSL for his second outing exploring the different ways in which the mail has been delivered.

Postal Stationery Matters

In another varied selection of postal stationery from around the world, Peter van Gelder highlights the very first commemorative postal item and goes on the hunt for an elusive Australian ERP.

Gone But Not Forgotten

In another article on the stamps of ‘dead’ countries, John Moody discusses the history and philatelic story of the Mali Federation, Malagasy Republic and Spanish West Africa.

Stamp Hunting

Stamps to look out for from British Guiana.

Shore to Shore

We highlight the latest new issues from Guernsey, Jersey and the Isle of Man.

Stamp News in Brief

A summary of recent and forthcoming issues.


Alison Boyd investigates the stories behind some of the latest stamp issues from around the world.


Don’t miss your chance to win a £50 Stanley Gibbons voucher.

Catalogue Column

Hugh Jefferies offers more opinion from the Catalogue Editor’s chair.

Catalogue Supplement

A 12-page update to the Stanley Gibbons Catalogue.