Gold Medallists

If the Olympics weren't a once in a lifetime experience as it is, the Royal Mail are going to the unprecedented step of actually opening 500 post offices on Sunday. "Why?" I hear you cry at your monitor. Well, gather closer dear internet chums and I shall tell you.

Royal Mail are going to be celebrating Team GB's sucess at the London Olympics by issuing  new stamps with Gold Medallists on, the twist being they'll be doing it faster than our postie whizzes round with the mail! During the Games, picture editors, graphic designers, printers and drivers will swing into action, working around the clock when Team GB strikes gold to meet the challenge of getting the stamps on sale by lunchtime the next day, even if a Team GB medal win is late the previous evening. 

I imagine these stamps are going to be pretty darn collectable,as well as being useful to sending letters and cards. As I'm a fairly obtuse individual I intend to celebrate every gold medal by sending a postcard to my parents highlighting the stamp on the postcard and saying nothing else that's remotely meaningful.

500 key post offices will get the stamps the next day, and you can buy them online at the Royal Mail website as well. the stamps will also be distributed to a further 4,500 post offices 3 times during the Olympics, so everyone will have a chance to get some funky stamps. Some of the 500 offices will even open on a Sunday for the first time, no doubt causing mass confusion amongst the elderly and unemployed who seem to seek meaning in post offices across the country.

Royal Mail has a proud history of commemorating the London Olympic Games, having issued four stamps for the 1948 Games bearing the five Olympic Rings. Olympic stamps were not issued to mark the 1908 London Games as Royal Mail stamps then bore images of the reigning monarch only, a fact that will probably crop up in pub quizzes all summer long, so don't say that I never help you out.

I was chatting to someone who used to be involved in the higher echelons of football administration the other week and he was adamant that the Paralympics would be the most successful ever, so it's perhaps fitting that Royal Mail will also be the first postal administration, whose country is hosting the Games, to issue a set of stamps to celebrate the start of the Paralympic Games on 29th August.

Personally I'm rooting for gold medals from our beach volleyball team, the synchronised swimmers and the women's hockey team. Lets see the Royal Mail get them on a stamp!

If you want to Be The First in the queue you can register your interest now. My best bet is our first gold will come on 28 July, in the cycling, from the legendary Mark Cavendish goes for gold.

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