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Royal Mail products included in British Stamp Organiser

British Stamp Organiser contains details and images of all British stamps and their related products which have been issued by the UK Post Office or Royal Mail, i.e. stamp books, presentation packs, stamp sheets, first day covers, PHQ cards and ingot packs/covers, etc. It does not include the independent issues of Jersey, Guernsey or the Isle of Man.

There is a separate entry and image for each ‘basic’ stamp issued since the 1840 Penny Black. ‘Basic’ being defined as to whether Royal Mail would provide a full first day cover service for the stamp, i.e. whether the stamp looks different from what had been previously issued. In compiling the database a few exceptions have been made to allow for the different printings and watermarks of the early Queen Elizabeth definitive stamps (Wildings and Castles). In addition there are entries and images for stamp books, presentation packs, stamp sheets, first day covers, PHQ cards and ingot packs/covers.

Commemorative Stamps

As a general rule, commemoratives are collected as sets, not as individual stamps. This has been reflected in the British Stamp Organiser. However, there is the option to record each stamp separately or as a set of stamps, with images for both. This allows the user to collect by theme where only one stamp of a set is relevant to a particular theme. There is also provision for including any number of scans of varieties and/or errors making appropriate notes alongside each entry.


British Stamp Organiser recognises that collectors wish to store items using different methods. British Stamp Organiser helps address this problem. For example, the first Wilding definitives of the 1950s are stored in the Stamp Organiser’s database in three formats, viz:

  1. A single entry for the complete set of 17 basic stamps.
  2. Six entries for the FDC collector - these stamps were issued on 6 separate dates, and therefore, for FDC collectors, represent six different issues.
  3. A separate entry for each stamp - to record varieties (e.g. changes to perforations, watermark, printer, phosphor etc). Users can record any number of versions for every stamp which is listed in the Stamp Organiser’s database.


Entries and images are included for the different colours and values of each basic stamp. There are entries for both the single stamps and sets (i.e. when two or more were issued on the same date).

Stamp Books

An entry for every stamp book issued since 1904 is included, i.e. where the contents or the stamp book cover are different to previously issued. There are over 1,000 entries. Each book is illustrated as follows:

  1. The early ‘stitched’ books show the front cover for the complete series, e.g. for the 6/- Birds series of the late 1960s there are ten entries and illustrations.
  2. The folded books and window books are all illustrated (where the contents or book illustration differs from previously issued) - the stamp pane is also illustrated which makes for easy identification.
  3. All Prestige Stamp Books are also illustrated with a separate image for each stamp pane.

First Day Covers

Around 30,000 British FDC images are included for you to select instead of scanning in your own covers. In addition to the Royal Mail first day covers, there can be up to forty different privately produced first day covers for many stamp issues - images for many of these are also included with the British Stamp Organiser. Until version 6 of British Stamp Organiser, an attempt was made to add as many covers for each new stamp issue as possible. This is no longer the case, however the Royal Mail FDC with a few other privately produced covers are still listed and illustrated. Users can scan their own covers and import them into the British Stamp Organiser and add the relevant information. 

Royal Mail Coin, Medal and Ingot Covers

Initially many of these were issued as souvenir or commemorative covers, i.e. not on the stamp issue dates. These can be found by searching for the stamp issue to which they relate, rather than searching for the issue date. As an example: Royal Mail issued a coin cover in 2011 to mark the 500th anniversary of the Mary Rose - it included two stamps from the Tudors commemorative stamps (Henry VIII and The Mary Rose) which were issued on 21st April 2009. You will find this cover included with the 2009 Tudors issue. Another way to locate these covers is to:

  • Select Type (choose stamp type)
  • Select Year Range (choose year range)
  • In the Additional FDC Options:
  • Select Producer (Royal Mint)
  • Select Series (All)
  • Click on 'Show First Day Covers'.

You can find other Royal Mail souvenir covers by following the above but change Select Producer from (Royal Mint) to (Royal Mail/Post Office).

Souvenir / Commemorative Covers

The British Stamp Organiser was never designed to include the vast number of souvenir covers which have been produced over the years. However most Royal Mail's souvenir covers (coin covers, medal covers, cachet covers, ingot covers etc) are included - see note above. It is possible to add souvenir covers by finding the stamp issue to which the stamps on the cover relate. To keep these items separate, you could store them in a new collection.

Packs and PHQs

All presentation packs and PHQ cards are illustrated - this includes all the year packs, year books, souvenir books, commemorative documents an ingot packs issued by Royal Mail. The modern presentation packs were first introduced with the 1964 Shakespeare issue, with PHQ cards following with the 1973 Cricket issue. Initially both were issued randomly for a couple of years before they became regular products. Also included are a few privately produced packs for issues the Post Office missed (these are numbered PPP01 etc).

Miniature Sheets

Miniature sheets and press sheets are listed and illustrated in a separate section.

Stamp Sheets

These include all Royal Mail generic sheets, commemorative sheets, Smilers for Kids etc. In addition all privately produced (where known) business customised sheets are included.

Ingot Packs

The ingot packs are listed in issue date order within the presentation pack section.

Post & Go Stamps

These are all listed in a separate section and now include the special Royal Mail overprints.

To Pay Labels & Postage Dues

These are all listed in a separate section.


Frama Labels

These 1984 issues are all listed in the Miscellaneous Stamps section.

Official Stamps

A number of stamps of Queen Victoria and Edward VII were officially overprinted in black with issue dates ranging 1882-1903. These are currently not included.


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