Tag Archives: football

Football Heroes

Today Royal Mail is celebrating the 150th anniversary of the establishing of the rules of Association Football with the release of a set of stamps entitled ‘Football Heroes’. The launch also coincides with the 150th anniversary year of the Football Association and the 140th anniversary year of the Scottish Football Association.

Football Heroes stamps.

Football Heroes stamps.

The 11 1st Class stamps feature individual footballers from England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales, all of whom were supremely gifted, talented players who stood out in their generation and beyond. The stamps have been illustrated by artist Andrew Kinsman, who took existing photography of all the players, then created a composite artwork, so when the 11 stamps are placed together, they form a traditional team shot.

The eleven players selected were chosen for their outstanding record on the pitch and representation of their home countries. All are in the National Football Museum’s Hall of Fame.

In goal was a man many consider to be the greatest ‘keeper to ever play for England, Gordon Banks, with the legendary English World Cup winning captain Bobby Moore, possibly the finest Welsh player of all time John Charles, and Scottish legend, Dave Mackay making up an impressive back three.

Gordon Banks.

Gordon Banks.

Bobby Moore.

Bobby Moore.

John Charles.

John Charles.

Dave Mackay.

Dave Mackay.

English ‘Captain Marvel’, Bryan Robson takes his central midfield berth alongside Bobby Charlton, recognised as one of the greatest English footballers of all time and Kevin Keegan, twice named European Footballer of the Year.

Bryan Robson.

Bryan Robson.

Bobby Charlton.

Bobby Charlton.

Kevin Keegan.

Kevin Keegan.

Leading the line in this adventurous formation sees the wide positions occupied by the graceful English winger, John Barnes and the Northern Irish genius, George Best. Both players supply a striking duo of England’s Jimmy Greaves, one of the most instinctively gifted footballers in the history of the game, and Denis Law, the Scottish Football Association’s outstanding player of the previous 50 years.

John Barnes.

John Barnes.

George Best.

George Best.

Jimmy Greaves.

Jimmy Greaves.

Dennis Law.

Dennis Law.

Stamps are available online at www.royalmail.com/stamps, by phone on 08457 641 641, and in 9000 Post Offices across the UK.

World Cup stamp designs from 1970 uncovered by archivists

World Cup 1970 stamp design recently uncovered by BPMA

World Cup 1970 stamp design recently uncovered by BPMA

Just days before the 2010 World Cup kicks off, unused postage stamp designs from the 1970 World Cup have been uncovered by archivists at the BPMA. The designs, by one of the UK’s most prolific stamp designers, David Gentleman, were commissioned in the event that England should have a successive World Cup victory following its win in 1966. 

1966 England Winners stamp

1966 England Winners stamp

It’s thought that David Gentleman was briefed to prepare the 1970 designs after the more hasty production of the celebratory stamp for the World Cup four years previously. Although the Royal Mail had produced a hugely popular set of stamps to mark England’s hosting of the World Cup in 1966, when the national team won there was only time to modify the existing stamp with the words ‘ENGLAND WINNERS’ to celebrate the triumph.

Royal Mail was obviously determined to be more prepared in 1970, which is why it commissioned designer David Gentleman, although sadly England didn’t experience the same victory in 1970 and that the stamp designs were filed away and forgotten.

The BPMA holds all the original artwork for both the 1966 stamps and the unseen 1970 stamp designs. Those who would like to see the stamps and the designs may visit The British Postal Museum & Archive, but please see our website for details on viewing philatelic material beforehand.