Two new stamps will be issued on Tuesday to celebrate Queen Elizabeth II’s Platinum Jubilee – but Australia Post is already working on themes for the end of her reign.
For seven decades on the throne, the Queen has seen wars, natural disasters, tragedies, family divorces and scandals as well as the personal loss a year ago this week of her husband, Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.
The $1.10 domestic rate stamp is an image of the Queen taken two months after her accession to the throne on February 6, 1952. It is a hand-coloured photograph taken on April 15 by Dorothy Wilding, the first woman appointed official royal photographer. Wilding first photographed the Queen as a child in 1937, at the coronation of her father, King George VI.
The Queen wears the George IV State Tiara and the Order of the Garter. She loaned the Nizam of Hyderabad diamond necklace she wears to Kate, Duchess of Cambridge, to wear at a National Portrait Gallery gala in London in 2014.
The portrait is in the collection of the National Portrait Gallery in London, and the images from this photo shoot helped create the Queen’s image on new coins, banknotes and stamps, including in Australia.
The $3.50 international stamp is from a photograph by Max Mumby of Indigo/Getty Images and shows the Queen attending an event to mark British Airways’ centenary at Heathrow Airport in 2019.
The Queen, who has a very large stamp collection, is known to personally endorse the stamps.
Australia Post group philatelic director Michael Zsolt said the new royal stamps were part of a long-standing tradition.
“Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II is the most featured person on Australian stamps, and we were the first postal authority in the Commonwealth to produce a Queen’s birthday stamp every year since 1980,” Mr Zsolt said. .