Issue Date: 21/06/2016
Issue Name: Great War 2016 Centenary First Day Cover
Producer: Buckingham Covers
Using the third part of the five year set of Great War issue stamps we have produced this fantastic centenary cover with all six of the June 2016 Great War stamp issue. Each year of the war will be explored through a stamp which covers six key themes: Poppies, Poetry, War Art, Memorial and Artefacts. These themes combine to form a beautiful and poignant collection which fit perfectly on our first day covers.
1916 witnessed some of the largest battles in history, both on land & sea including the infamous Battle of the Somme which is remembered in one of the £1.52 stamps this year. The ‘Thiepval Memorial, Somme’ is a war memorial to 72,195 missing British and South African servicemen, who died in the Battles of the Somme of the First World War between 1915 and 1918, with no known grave. It is near the village of Thiepval, Picardy in France. A visitors' centre opened in 2004.
1st Class - Battlefield Poppy by Giles Revell
The single Battlefield Poppy reflects on the pain and anguish of war time loss. Giles Revell, a London photographer who designed the stamp suspended poppies in a water tank and added coloured dyes to create swirling mist like patterns. The final result is a stunning effect capturing the solitary poppy's fragility and vulnerability.
1st Class - 'To My Brother', Vera Brittain
Vera Brittain was born in 1893 in Staffordshire. At the outbreak of war, her younger brother applied for commission, in 1915 Vera trained as a nurse. IN June 1918 she wrote 'To My Brother', a poem commemorating her brother's bravery on the Somme two years previously. In the poem she addresses her brother: "May you endure to lead the last advance". Four days later her brother was killed.
1st Class - Munitons Worker Lottie Meade
Studio portrait of Lottie Meade a munitons worker seen posing in her overalls, her head covered by a headscarf. ON her overalls, she wears a small triangulr brooch, an 'On War Service' badge that marks her as playing her part in the war effort. Employment in the munitons industry could be hazardous and Meade herself died of TNT poisoning in October 1916, leaving behind her husband and four children.
£1.52 - Painting of Travoys Arriving with Wounded by Stanley Spencer
This stamp features the painting by Stanley Spencer and was inspired by an incident he witnessed in September 1916. During the time he was serving with a field ambulance unit in Macedonia, a stream of wounded brought to Spencer's dressing station which was in a Greek Church.
£1.52 - Thiepval Memorial, Somme
The village of Thiepval was a key strategic point on the Somme Battlefield. Fought over many times, it was finally captured by British troops in September 1916. Thiepval was later selected as the site of the Thiepval Memorial. The arches symbolise the unity of Britain and France. The memorial's inner faces bear the names of 72,253 British and South African troops who died on the Somme and who have no known grave. Rising up to 160feet, the memorial now stands overa peaceful agricultural landscape, dotted with British and imperial cemeteries and memorials.
£1.52 - Captain A.C Green's Battle of Jutland Commemorative Medal
After Jutland, unofficial medals were struck to commemorate the battle. Designed by Prince Louis of Battenberg, these medals were made by Spink and Son of London and sold in gold, silver, broze and white metal versions to raise money for naval orphanages. The design features a trident, a symbol of naval power. Crossed flagstaffs bear a Union flag and the Royal Navy's White Ensign, and a shield carries the date of the battle: 31 May 1916. The example on the stamp belonged to Captain A.C Green of the Royal Marines.
Want to see our all the covers in our 5th Series? Click here to view them all
Cheryl Campbell is well known for her starring role as Vera Brittain in 'Testament of Youth' (1979) for which she received the Best Actress Award at the BAFTAs.