King Charles has become the first monarch in British history to be featured on postal stamps without crown. He is the seventh monarch to feature on a definitive stamp, the first being Queen Victoria in 1840.
The UK’s Royal Mail on Wednesday unveiled the first designs for new postage stamps bearing King Charles III’s image, which have a simple look without a crown. The design features the 74-year-old King’s side profile, created by sculptor Martin Jennings.
Royal Mail director’s statements
“The feedback we got back [from Charles] was that he wanted it to be simple. It’s a very human image, with no embellishment,” said Royal Mail director of external affairs, David Gold.
“What marks this stamp out is that there is no embellishment at all, no crown, just simply the face of the human being, on the plain background, almost saying, ‘This is me and I’m at your service.’ I think in this modern age it is actually rather humbling.”
The image of the 74-year-old monarch featured on first and second-class stamps is made up of his profile image, showing his head and neck in the style of his late mother, Queen Elizabeth II.
In keeping with royal tradition, Charles faces to the left, similar to the late Queen.
“The guidance we got from His Majesty was more about continuity and not doing anything too different to what had gone before,” said David Gold, Royal Mail’s director of external affairs and policy.
“I think what marks this stamp out is that there is no embellishment at all, no crown,” he said.
The image is reflective of a sculpture made by artist Martin Jennings, used by the Royal Mint to make new King Charles coins.
The image was reportedly adjusted and relit for use on the new stamps, the first since the death of the Queen in September 2022.
Stamps will not have a country name
Britain’s postage stamps do not show the name of the country, with all new stamps now accompanied by a barcode.
The old and new stamps will be used concurrently but shops and post offices will not start selling the new stamps until stocks featuring the late Queen are sold out.
“The King gave very clear directions that he didn’t want anything to be pulped, he didn’t want things being shredded, he didn’t want stock being thrown away. He was very clear, however long it takes you to clear the stock, there’s no rush,” Gold added.
However, the public can register interest in the new stamps now on the Royal Mail’s website.
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