On the Friday (23rd February) just before the 23rd National Day celebrations this year, the Postal Services Department released the new Brunei definitive stamps. Not many people seemed to have realised it but then in the era of the internet and skype, not that many Bruneians used the traditional communication methods anymore such as letter writing. As for me, other than for sending out Hari Raya cards, Christmas cards or Chinese New Year cards, I don't remember any other times I actually buy postage stamps.
It was 10 years ago when the last design was released. For the postage stamps knowledge challenged, definitive stamps are the stamps which are always available at the post offices as compared to commemorative stamps which are issued occassionally which the post offices will stop selling once their stocks run out. Definitive stamps are by design changed only if the designs have become too old or in Brunei's case, there are changes to the photographs of His Majesty.
The design of the new definitive stamps from February 2007 are as follows:
The stamps are designed by Pg Hj Mohd Yamin bin PSJ Pg Hj Abd Momin and they are printed by JOH Enschede of the Netherlands using Tullis Russell TR8 paper. The actual size of the 'sen' value stamp is 24 mm x 33 mm and the 'dollar' value stamp is 27 mm x 40.6 mm.
For those who remembered, the 1996 series had different potraits of His Majesty for the 'sen' value and the 'dollar' value. The 1986 series was interesting, it was released on four separate occassions - 10 sen, 15 sen, 20 sen and 25 sen was released in December 1985, 35 sen, 40 sen, 50 sen adn 75 sen released in January 1986, $1, $2 and $5 released in February 1986 and $10 was released in March 1986. The previous one prior to that was the 1974 series. There were other series too but that will be the subject of future articles.