Royal Mail Stamps Guide 2017 - Windmills and Watermills, 20 June 2017

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20 June 2017
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1-63661.jpg Windmills & Watermills
Royal Mail pays tribute to the country’s long history of milling, with a look at six of the UK’s finest surviving wind and water mills, which between them ground grain, processed flint and produced cloth.

Royal Mail pays tribute to the country’s long history of milling, with a look at six of the UK’s finest surviving wind and water mills, which between them ground grain, processed flint and produced cloth.

The history of using the power of the wind to grind grain and pump water dates back to as early as 500AD, when the first mills used blades or sails to convert the wind into energy, whilst watermill technology developed around the second century BC.

The six Special stamps feature photographs of three windmills and three watermills, located in England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales. As well as being prized for its role in mill history, each of these buildings is considered to be an attractive feature of the landscape in which it stands. Artists such as Turner and Constable created paintings in which windmills and watermills featured as an enhancement to the landscape, and generations of amateur artists have also painted and sketched mills.

Each of the mills featured can still be visited, and five of the six are still in operation today, albeit mainly to show visitors how these buildings once operated, and the huge machinery needed to keep the sails turning. These wind and watermills, and others around the UK, are rare survivors from a time when there were thousands of mills around the countryside. In many cases, their survival is down to the hard work and determination of heritage groups which have restored these historic buildings and returned them to how they would have looked in the days when they supplied the population with their daily bread and the clothes they wore.

Windmills and Watermills stamp details

Issue date: 20 June, 2017

Design: Atelier Works

Stamp size: 35mm x 37mm

Printer: International Security Printers

Print process: Lithography

Perforations: 14.5 x 14

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Phosphor: Bars as appropriate

Gum: PVA

1st – Nutley Windmill, East Sussex

1st – New Abbey Corn Mill, Dumfries & Galloway

£1.40 – Ballycopeland Windmill, Co Down

£1.40 – Cheddleton Flint Mill, Staffordshire

£1.57 – Woodchurch Windmill, Kent

£1.57 – Felin Cochwillan Mill, Gwynedd

Read an in-depth article on the Windmills and Watermills stamps in the July issue of Stamp & Coin Mart, available on our website.