The Postal Museum announces the reopening of its Post & Go machines

LONDON, 26 October 2020 – The Postal Museum is set to resume the operation of its two Post & Go machines as the Museum reopens to the general public on 29 October 2020. Both kiosks will be located at The Postal Museum’s Welcome Space and no admission ticket will be required to access the services.

Additional safety measures are being introduced such as a hand sanitizer station, a one-in-one-out access and information on how to scan the NHS Test and Trace QR code located near the machines.
The machines will vend the Mail Coach stamps of all values with a new overprint “Postcards 150” celebrating 2020 as a year of celebration marking 150 years of the British postcard.

Both Post & Go machines are available at The Postal Museum from 10.30 and throughout the museum’s opening hours (Thursdays to Sundays). Please check the full revised opening hours at www.postalmuseum.org.

“Virtual Stampex 2020” overprint available at the Postal Museum’s online shop

The Postal Museum has confirmed that the Royal Mail Post & Go 1st class Machin stamps will be available with a special “Virtual Stampex 2020” overprint from 1st – 3rd October 2020 to coincide with the online stamp fair.

These stamps will only be available by mail order from the Postal Museum’s online shop at https://shop.postalmuseum.org/ between these dates.  Collector’s strips will be priced at a cost of £10.11 each plus £3.50 postage and packing per order. 

Both Post & Go machines at The Postal Museum and Mail Rail will be unavailable during this time as the Postal Museum is currently closed due to the Covid epidemic. It is due to re-open in late October.  Please see www.postalmuseum.org for more information.

The Postal Museum launches public call out for letters, cards, parcels and packaging from Lockdown

Lockdown Post: a letter, handmade face covering and mail art envelope © Rehana Gittens

The Postal Museum are searching for letters, envelopes, greetings cards and packaging from Lockdown – the latest chapter in the 500-year old story of postal services in the UK. The museum, which opened in 2017, explores British social and communications history as seen through the eyes of its iconic postal service.

Now, they are seeking donations of items from across the UK, to add to the museum’s collection, telling the story of Lockdown through items sent and received in the post since March.

Chris Taft, Head of Collections at The Postal Museum, said:

“Postal networks have long been a part of our social infrastructure, but the COVID-19 emergency has created new and different meanings to the purpose and value of the post. We want our museum collections to reflect how postal operations have changed to deal with the pandemic, how people are using the post to maintain personal relationships and the importance of the post to the economy.

Our museum might be based in London, but our collections represent the whole of the country, so we want to reach far and wide to capture how the post is connecting people across the UK and the world at this moment in time.”

The museum are looking for the public to submit offers of donations and a selection will be collected across three areas:

Letters and envelopes: The museum are looking for letters, whatever the content, and where possible envelopes particularly those that have been personalised with mail art sent since March 2020.

Greetings cards: Cards reflect how the post has helped us mark special occasions without us being able to meet in person and many new designs have been created that respond to major world events in 2020.

Parcels and packaging: Businesses have used the post to continue trading during the pandemic. One box can tell many stories, from the innovation of a company and the changing buying habits of consumers, to the personal impact receiving items had on someone in lockdown from supplies to gifts.

The project, COVID-19 and the Post, will provide a vital resource to understand the changing uses and the importance of the post in this unprecedented time. It is the first phase of an ongoing project collecting objects and personal accounts to reflect the shifting relationships people have with the post and the impact on postal and delivery workers.

You can submit an item to donate to The Postal Museum on their website: www.postalmuseum.org/wecollect

The Postal Museum releases exclusive virtual tour of underground Mail Rail through Make a Connection hub

Mail Rail from Home virtual experience © The Postal Museum

The Postal Museum launches their Make a Connection online hub for everyone to enjoy the museum experience virtually whilst its physical doors remain temporarily closed due to the Coronavirus outbreak.

For a limited time only, everyone will be able to experience the museum’s star attraction – Mail Rail – from the comfort of their own home. Viewers of the Mail Rail from Home virtual tour can explore the hidden subterranean world of the 100-year-old Post Office Railway on a miniature train transporting them through its original narrow tunnels.

Mail Rail from Home immersive virtual ride lasts approximately 10 minutes and is narrated by Ray Middlesworth, former Mail Rail engineer. Ray guides viewers through the tunnels that run beneath the Mount Pleasant sorting office, stopping at various points along the way, including the largely unchanged station platforms to give an insight into how the railway kept post coursing through London for 22 hours a day and kept Britain, and the world, connected. A story relevant now more than ever.

An impressive audio-visual display transports viewers back in time to help them understand the impact of the railway on our ability to communicate with friends, family and business partners across the world today. Powerful events from our history, including the Blitz, are revealed and a theatrical experience peels back the layers of time to bring the station back to its lively 1930s heyday.

In addition to this virtual experience, which features footage usually exclusive to the in-museum experience, visitors to Make a Connection online can see the museum’s off-site store where large objects like vehicles and pillar boxes are stored, explore objects from the collections, revisit past exhibitions and read stories of extraordinary communication from Postal Museum experts to inspire them to make meaningful connections during lockdown.

Make a Connection online hub is open for a limited time only at: www.postalmuseum.org/make-a-connection
Mail Rail from Home can be viewed at: www.postalmuseum.org/mail-rail-from-home