As part of its Britons of Distinction Stamp Set, one of a series of special stamp sets issued this year to mark the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, Royal Mail are due to release a stamp commemorating Alan Turing tomorrow. This features the rebuilt Turing Bombe on display to visitors at Bletchley Park.
Bletchley Park are offering for sale a set of first day covers. According to ebay, “first day cover”:
refers to an envelope on which a stamp is pasted and the stamp gets cancelled on the very first day of issue. A cachet is placed on the left side of the envelope that describes the stamp’s issue. The cachet is a design that will explain the event or anniversary being commemorated. The stamps affixed are related to some events. The first day cover stamps are must haves for the first day cover collectors.
The first day covers are produced in association with the Alan Turing Centenary Year Committee and Bletchley Park Post Office, with proceeds from sales going to support Bletchley Park. According to a Bletchley Park press release:
The first design is by Rebecca Peacock of Firecatcher Design and the theme is Turing’s work on the mathematics of patterns. It was Turing’s genius for mathematics that made his work so vital to Bletchley Park and the development of modern computing.
The other three are original paintings by artist Steve Williams who has donated his work to the Bletchley Park Trust. They depict three buildings at Bletchley Park associated with Alan Turing. These are the cottage and Hut 8 where he worked and Hut 11 that housed the Turing Bombe machines.
The Royal Mail stamp features the rebuilt Turing Bombe on display to visitors at Bletchley Park. The first day of issue postmark is a facsimile of one of the Bombe’s 36 drums marked with letters of the alphabet.
Stocks are limited (1000 for the first design; 500 each of the others) so early ordering is recommended.
First Day Covers at Bletchley Park Shop.
Press release: Bletchley Park Puts Stamp On Turing Centenary.