Stare at the Paddington stamps


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31 August 2023
To celebrate an important birthday, the Royal Mail has released a new set of Paddington stamps

First brought to life by Michael Bond in 1958, Paddington Bear’s appeal has made him a central figure in children’s literature. This year he celebrates his 65th birthday – and the Royal Mail are celebrating it too, with the issue of ‘Paddington’, a set of six Special Stamps.

The stamps feature illustrations by Ivor Wood that were originally published in strip cartoon form in London’s Evening News in the 1970s. 

One of the First Class stamps shows Paddington with a jar of his beloved marmalade; in the other, he’s sawing wood.

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The two £2 stamps show Paddington pushing a shopping trolley and holding an ice cream, and on the £2.20 stamps he’s carrying a teetering pile of presents and having an encounter with a crab. 

Paddington-loving philatelists will also be keen to have the set’s miniature sheet, which contains four stamps with images from when Paddington the much-loved book character made the transition to small screen star in 1975. 

Illustrator and animator Ivor Wood was pivotal in the creation of the BBC’s series, which he designed and directed. The stamps on the miniature sheet (two First Class, two £2) show how his vision translated from book to screen, as a Paddington bear stuffed toy interacts with animated figures, including his friend Mr Gruber and the Brown family with whom he lives.