British First Day Cover producer closes! Bletchley Park closes secret post office…

March 7th, 2016 hurries to inform our readers the latest important news from the world of philately. The former undercover mailroom for World War Two codebreakers that later became a post office is to close.

The museum was completely restored after receiving a £5m Heritage Lottery grant in 2011 and raising £2.4m. Following the closure of Bletchley Park Post Office, Bletchley Stamp Art will soon be closing the website.

The first Bletchley Park Post Office first day cover was issued in June 1994. It celebrated the opening of the home of the Enigma code breakers to the public by a group of volunteers. Since 1939 its top secret code breaking operations had been shrouded in mystery. The post office was originally an undercover mail room but become a sub post office when the then General Post Office acquired the site in 1946.

Some 200+ limited edition first day covers were issued that helped fund many Bletchley Park activities. Unfortunately, along with many other exhibits, the post office is no longer considered relevant to the new digital age plans for the museum. Its exhibits and artefacts have been acquired by another museum as a non-functioning post office display so production of covers and special stamp issues has been discontinued.

The remaining cover stock providing collectors with an opportunity to acquire some rather special pieces, many signed by former code breakers and people connected with Bletchley Park's history. They are only available through the Bletchley Park Post Office web site before it too closes.

The post office was a popular attraction for the millions who visited Bletchley Park over the 20+ years it was open and many became keen collectors.

Although demand for first day covers is declining those issued through Bletchley Park Post Office have a very significance link to the past. For it was at Bletchley Park that the computer technology developed that led to email superseding the letter. Paradoxically it was the sending of special cards and letters from the post office that attracted visitors to it.