This article was originally published October 2014 in Postal Order News. It was nominated by the Postal Order Society as an APS Articles of Distinction winner. Learn more here.
In PON 84 (p.17) Tony Whitehead illustrated the first recorded copy of a £1 with dual currency poundage, but with the large cursive “high value” font for the denomination £1 rather than the smaller font. In PON 85 (p.2 and front cover) Tony illustrated a further example of this scarce combination, this time overprinted for use in New Zealand.
Here, for comparison, are the scarce combination and the more usually expected format.
It can immediately be seen that all of the examples except Fig 2 have serial prefix 1227 (Fig 2 has 1217). Less apparent is that the New Zealand overprints all use a taller narrower font than seen on any other New Zealand overprints. Why should a special format overprint have been used? Possibly the larger font for £1 rendered the normal overprint unsuitable so a special setting was used. However this cannot be easily verified as no £1 dual currency postal orders with the smaller font have been recorded overprinted for New Zealand. (The Sierra Leone item in Fig 1 is the only recorded example with any overprint.) A further possibility is that the post office realised that this was not an intended combination of £1 font and dual currency, and used them up to overprint for New Zealand, after small numbers were released in the UK (Figs 1 & 2). Both UK examples are dated 1971, but the New Zealand items are much later.
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