Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Philexpo ‘05: Stamps and Phonecards

By Alice Mascarenhas

Gibraltar’s Philatelic Bureau is presently staging PHILEXPO ‘05. On exhibition are stamps and phonecards with sizeable display of material from the Gibraltar Post Office collection featuring many Gibraltar issues of the last 40 years.

There are stamp displays by local collectors who have never exhibited before, and others well known in local circles such as Richard Garcia and Stephen Vinales. Also exhibiting are seven Spanish philatelists from La Linea and Algeciras.

The displays cover a wide range of material and themes from Gibraltar stamps of the reign of Queen Victoria, varieties on Gibraltar stamps, a display on postal relations between Gibraltar and Spain, Naval covers, to stamps featuring Princess Diana, and footballers.

The exhibition will remain on display until Saturday at the exhibition area in the Casemates Vaults.

Managing Director of the Gibraltar Philatelic Bureau Glendon Martinez, and local philatelist, Richard Garcia, representing Philatelic Minister Joe Holliday, who was unable to attend, carried out the official opening.

It was he said the first time that stamps and phonecards had been put together as one display, and also welcomed the participation of the Spanish collectors in the exhibition.

Glendon Martinez, who emphasized this was another exhibition to promote stamp collecting on the Rock said Gibraltar had some 300 stamp collectors, and that the hobby was on the increase.

“We want to further promote philately and assist collectors in exhibiting their own collections. We have done four exhibitions in a period of two years and we feel this is a way of helping to promote the hobby locally,” he said. "There is no need to be a professional exhibitor to exhibit your work and personal collections, all people have to do is contact at us at the Bureau and we will advise them.”

This is the first time Gibraltar sees an open class exhibit where people have been able to combine stamps with phonecards, lottery tickets and coins.

“This is probably the way ahead because not just everyone is keen on just stamps but want to collect the thematic sets.”

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