2018 has begun in a very promising way. Lots of orders through the post, including several new customers
And a busy York Fair, again with new customers among the hardy regulars. I managed a short birding break to Norfolk early in the month. My stay there coincided with three days of storm force winds from Siberia which made walks “interesting”. One of the mornings at Holme was fabulous as the winds had forced the seabirds to move along the coast. I found a sheltered spot in the dunes which made observation more easy.

I have been offered more tempting stock during January which will be described in future newsletters. Much of it has been Commonwealth but mixed in with European countries and some further flung places too.

UPDATES ON STOCK

Australian States. With the help of a collector friend of mine, my Aussie States has now been sorted and priced. You could never call this range comprehensive but there are some useful items there. Currently the list is to be found at the end of my Commonwealth A- list, but that may change.

Australia. I finally sorted 7 “club books” from a German source. They housed nice copies of several Roo and George V values plus commems and Navigators. Mostly these were backup to existing stock but a few gaps in stock were filled.

Austrian Post Offices in Crete Following on from the POs in the Turkish Empire stock described last month, there was a significant little lot of this area too.

Belgium. I was offered a small dealer’s stock with stamps from 1952-78. I had most of these in stock already but I am always running out of some values and sets. Getting these spurred me on to sorting the phosphors of some issues. What a wonderful hour that was! c`

Canada. I merged into stock a useful collection with odd values previously missing from my range.

Caymans. I put into stock a lovely lot of Caymans this month. Much of it was from a single “country” collection plus others from Imperial album pages. There were good early definitives plus the complete set of the Centenary of Assembly issue. A hard set to complete.

Denmark. More new issues and this year Denmark was the first country to send me the stamps of 2018. There are roses, dreams and smiles!

Faroes. A bundle of new issues came my way. The subjects included the 7 swans, national costumes and the Reformation.

France. Previously I had stopped stocking France at 2011 due to a lack of demand and the fact that circular cancels are almost impossible to find on stamps after that year. One of my postal customers asked me to obtain some singles and mini sheets, so while I was doing that I also ordered a selection of stamps from 2012 as long as they had circular cancels. It will not be long before I need to order more France and I will continue to catch up a little.

Guatemala. I thought it was high time I worked on some Latin America and I chose Guatemala. I remembered from some years ago that this was a very popular country among the Latins and I had three lots on which to work. So you will find the result listed in my Latin America E-N list, which still has some countries to be sorted entirely.

Italy. Two postwar collections came along together and most of one of them has been merged into stock. Not many of the stamps filled gaps but they give more depth to my “inventory” as the Americans call it.

Thailand. This was one of the best lots I was offered during January. It was a dealer’s stock seemingly from Germany, judging by the notes in the books. It was a well duplicated lot, not complete but not far off. There were some better early issues then lots of colourful modern commemoratives.

Trieste. The second good lot of this area in a short period of time. Both Zones A + B were well represented including many of the key values. It beats me why the Gymnastics set of Trieste is so cheap when there are many less copies than of the Italian set. Presumably there is much more demand for Italy than Trieste despite greater supply as well.

Tristan da Cunha. I had a useful collection to merge into stock. It covered the period from KG6 to1989, not as far as some of my existing stock. Tristan is selling well so more stock was welcome.

USA. One of my suppliers sent me some important values from the 1920s-30s. Included were the Franklin 2 + 5 dollar bicoloured stamps and the single Zeppelin stamp, which went almost as soon as it arrived! My other supplier worked hard to find me recent issues and achieved quite a lot. These days it is not easy getting USA new issues so I was pleased with what he found.

POSTAL SALES

January was a busy month for orders, in fact the highest number of orders since February 2016! December had been a good month too so that is good news. I was pleased to receive orders from a good group of new customers too.

The Commonwealth countries continue to dominate the orders and even more so this month. Australia then France were next in line with good performances from Austria, Canada, GB and Romania.     

STAMP FAIRS

This month was dominated by the winter York Fair and it did not disappoint. The first day was quiet, perhaps due to snow on the Pennines preventing some customers from west of the hills from attending. But day 2 was a major success. Many of the new customers were Commonwealth collectors which is fine by me.

The other Fairs (Wokingham, Chichester and Bromsgrove) were quite good without being up to recent sales. A complete range of stock sold at the Fairs this month without any country dominating.

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