by John Ineson
The August issue of the Philatelic Bulletin mentions that there will be six Centenary of Scouting stamps to be issued on 26th July 2007, which is two days before the World Jamboree opens. Scouting beat competition from almost 2000 other entries, and the stamps will ensure that the Centenary will be very much in the public eye. Thanks to all of you who wrote to the Post office requesting that this should be included in next year's issues.
Information appeared on the Scouting 2007 web site www.wsj.scouting2007.org/english/dayvisitors regarding the dates for public openings at the World Jamboree. The site will be open from 29 - 31 July and 2-6 August. It will not be open to the public for the Opening (Saturday 28th July), Closing (Tuesday 7 August) and Sunrise ceremony (Wednesday 1st August). During the visit, guests will be able to experience the camp with access to the Plaza, Arena, Global Development Boulevard and some programme areas. There will be no access to the Sub Camps where participants will be camping. The price for a one-day visit to the Jamboree is Adults £20.00 and children (under 14) £15.00. Guests are not permitted to visit on more than one day and reservations will need to be made in advance via the website. Those wishing to attend will have to check in at North Weald Airfield, 13 miles (21 km) from Hylands Park, where they will be transferred by shuttle coach. I remember the 1995 Jamboree in the Netherlands. We were told then that you could only go on one day, but in the end the organisers were happy for you to go every day if you paid your money! I think at £20 a head they will be pleased to get as many visitors as possible.
Just to prove that bargains are still about, one of our members attending the recent Leeds Postcard fair purchased for £5.00 the card illustrated. This shows the very scarce 1935 Glastonbury, Somerset purple cachet which on looking through my records, I noted that the last time I had seen one for sale was in April 1990, when it made £240 at the Healey & Wise auction. This camp was held at Whitsuntide, and despite difficulty of the date being during school term time, they were still able to get contingents from Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Holland, France and from the Armenian Scouts. The Mayor of Glastonbury threw himself whole heartedly into the affair, and entertained all the foreign guests to lunch at the Town Hall. According to Hubert Martin, the International Commissioner at that time, "on the principal day of the Jamboree I think the entire population of Glastonbury attended". The card sent to Bala in North Wales, reads "I am here today at the Scout Jamboree. Starting holidays on Saturday. Going to the Canary Islands, Tangier etc. Will write to you later".
It is with sadness that I report that D.E. (Bill) Bourke past away last December. Those of you who were members in the 1960's will recall that at that time he was a very active member. One of his most favourite pieces in his collection was the pair of stamps with the Darlington cancel, which at that time had not been recorded in a Scout collection. Now the sad part of the story. What has happened to his collection which included some very fine Mafeking stamps and banknotes as well as sketches by Baden-Powell? When Bill died he had a lodger who decided in March (four months after Bill's death) that he would set fire to the house. The lodger then crossed the road and watched as the fire brigade come to put the fire out, after which he went to the Police Station to report what he had done. Since then Bill's solicitor writes "the property was the subject of a severe fire after his death during which all personal effects were destroyed". The lodger has since been sent by the court, to a mental institution. We do know that the Darlington cancel, two Mafeking stamps and various other Scout related items were purchased from a local dealer by Michael Berry of Healey and Wise and many of these were sold in his auction last June. What we do not know was how much other Scout material was placed by the lodger in the local auction before the fire. In other words what happened to the rest of his extensive collection? Has the majority of this been lost forever? Perhaps we should all learn by this tragic tale. Have you made plans to see that your collection will be available for future collectors?
1934 Romanian Mamaia overprinted stamps.
A total of 200,000 sets of stamps were issued by Romanian Post Office to commemorate the 2nd National Scout Jamboree held at Sibiu in Transylvania during July 1932. As these stamps were not all sold, 50,000 sets were overprinted in either in black or gold for the 3rd National Scout Jamboree held at Mamaia and were issued on 8th July 1934. Both sets were sold for double their face value to support Scouting in Romania.
Proofs of the overprints exist in various colours and some values are known with the overprint inverted.
Various other varieties exist such as the overprints being slanted or offset. The 25 bani stamps of both the 1932 and 1934 issue are known with the error /+25 and comes from the bottom left hand corner stamp of the sheet. A 25 bani stamp is known with a double overprint in yellow and at one time was in the collection of the late Wilhelm Nathansohn, the philatelic advisor to King Carol. It is believed that there are still colour proofs and other varieties to be discovered.
My thanks to Randall Frank, Ben Adams and Hallvard Slettebø for their help in researching this issue of stamps.