Sunday, May 3, 2015
Royal Mail tribute to first stamp, the Penny Black
The 175th anniversary of the world's first postage stamp is being marked with a new set of stamps.
The Penny Black went on sale on May 1, 1840, for use on letters being delivered anywhere in the UK, a system that is still in place today through the one-price-goes-anywhere universal service.
The stamp would cost £3.07 in today's terms.
The Penny Black was part of huge changes in the postal service, including charges by weight for a letter to go anywhere, as opposed to prices being worked out by distance and number of sheets in a letter.
Philip Parker of the Royal Mail said: "Royal Mail has a long and rich heritage which includes issuing the Penny Black, the world's first and arguably most famous, postage stamp.
"The Penny Black also signified a communication revolution, enabling people to send letters anywhere in the country for the same price.
"It was the internet of its day as mail became accessible for more people than ever before. The universal service is still the principal that underpins Royal Mail's service today and helps us to connect people and businesses together for a uniform price, wherever they are in the UK."
The set of stamps, which include images of the Penny Black and the Twopenny Blue stamp, goes on sale from May 6.