This type of display publicity first appeared in 1967 and the numbering
system, when used , follows the sequence of the counter grille cards.
exact use of these items remains unclear. They were available for
display at the Post Office Philatelic counters around the country with
the Edinburgh Philatelic Counter address printed across the bottom.
were two variants done for the US and German agents with their relevant
address across the bottom. The Agents may well have distributed them to dealers in their area. They may also have had an important role in the British Government's
desire to promote trade and cutlural links around the World through
Embassies and Trade Delegations.
The initial items had the stamps
affixed and were sent out pre-release . This caused
some problems with the German distribution as stamps were being returned to the
UK for use pre-release date. The stamps were therefore "CANCELLED" by
various sized handstamps. This solved the problem but created an
eagerly sought after over-print for collectors. By 1970 the stamps were
de-faced with a biro or felt tip pen across the corner. The US agent's
items always appear with the stamps unmarked.
At the London Stamp Show 2000 variants of the 1969 Gandhi stamps were being sold. The paper was of modern origin and very white, the printing looked to be done on an ink-jet printer, the PL(P) reference number was for a 1973 issue. I do not believe them to be original items !
If you are unsure about an item , please feel free to ask as there are other ways to recognise a modern copy . For obvious reasons I am not going to list them all here.
Please note , The pages are 222mm wide . They are much wider than A4 with four holes punched for the US and Germany versions. Collectors have often
trimmed them down to make them more
presentable. It is normally possible to see if this has happpened by
looking carefully along this border for signs of recent cutting or an
uneven side. Otherwise get a ruler out and measure.