After a concerted campaign by Spear's magazine and others across Twitter, Facebook and beyond, Royal Mail has backed down and agreed to produce a stamp for each Team GB Paralympian gold medal-winner
After a concerted campaign by Spear's magazine and others across Twitter, Facebook and beyond, Royal Mail has backed down and agreed to produce a stamp for each Team GB Paralympian gold medal-winner.
Spear's campaign included urging people to write to the CEO of Royal Mail and gaining the support of the postmen's union. Read our original article here.
This is wonderful news for the cause of equality and will allow us to celebrate our Olympians and Paralympians in equal measure. Thank you to everyone for your support.
Here is Royal Mail's statement:
Following the success of TeamGB at the London 2012 Olympics and in response to public demand, Royal Mail is gearing up to continue to paint the UK gold with gold post boxes and individual Gold Medal stamps for the London 2012 Paralympic Games.
Royal Mail will issue individual first class stamps for each ParalympicsGB individual or team gold medal winner. The stamps will be on sale in 518 dedicated Post Offices across the UK within five working days of each gold medal win and at a further 5,000 branches thereafter.
The Gold Medal stamps will be presented for purchase as a sheet of two First Class stamps for £1.20. The sheet carries additional information on the winning athlete or athletes. The stamps can also be bought individually at Post Offices for 60p each.
This will be the first time ever that a set of stamps have been issued to celebrate Paralympic gold medallists from the host country. On 29 August, Royal Mail will also become the first postal administration whose country is hosting the Games to issue a set of stamps to celebrate the start of the Paralympic Games.
This summer, around 4,200 athletes from 160 countries are expected to attend the Paralympic Games, with 471 medal events on the programme spread across 21 sports. At the Beijing 2008 Paralympic Games, ParalympicsGB won 42 gold medals.
Andrew Hammond, Managing Director, Royal Mail Stamps, said: “Following the great success of TeamGB at the Olympics, the popularity of Royal Mail’s Gold Medal stamps and the way in which our gold post boxes have captured the public imagination, we have decided to commemorate ParalympicsGB’s achievements in the same way.
“We believe this is the right thing to do.
“Just as our Olympians outperformed expectations, we are confident that our Paralympians will also outperform. That would see us issuing many more individual stamps than the 29 printed over the London 2012 Olympics fortnight. This is a huge logistical challenge and we will get the Gold Medal stamps for sale as quickly as possible to a network of Post Office branches around the country and certainly within five working days of a win.
“We are excited about our Paralympics Gold Medal stamps programme, which represents the greatest logistical challenge in stamps production ever undertaken by any postal administration.
“The stamps will be a wonderful way for people across the country to celebrate ParalympicsGB’s gold medal wins and help mark their amazing achievement. Royal Mail is proud to be involved in this once in a lifetime event and to provide financial support to the UK’s talented athletes.”
Tim Hollingsworth, Chief Executive Officer, British Paralympic Association, said: “We are delighted that the offer has been increased to enable individual stamps to celebrate our athletes' achievements and thank Royal Mail for reconsidering this proposal. We hope that the whole nation will continue their support of British athletes and cheer us on to many gold medals.”
Royal Mail has a long association with the British Paralympic Association. In 1992, Royal Mail was the official sponsor of the British Olympic and Paralympic teams, at the Barcelona games. This year, in support of ParalympicsGB, Royal Mail donated £200,000 to the British Paralympics Association, which will be shared equally among all ParalympicsGB gold medallists.