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Royal Mail Commemorates the Birth Bicentenary of Anthony Trollope’s the “Grandfather” of the Postbox

royal mail post box

Royal Mail is commemorating the bicentenary of Anthony Trollope’s birth in 1815 with a limited edition Commemorative Sheet of stamps.  This goes on sale on 24 April 2015 – 200 years since Trollope was born.Famous as a novelist, Trollope is also known as the person who introduced freestanding postboxes to the UK from 1852 during his time working at the Post Office, after seeing them first in France. In recognition of this, Royal Mail has created an online “family tree” of postboxes through the ages, with help from the Letter Box Study Group. 

Postboxes were first erected in London on five streets in 1855.  Royal Mail will attach a plaque to a postbox in each of these streets in the capital as part of its Trollope bicentenary celebrations.  The streets are: Fleet Street, The Strand, Piccadilly, Pall Mall and Rutland Gate in Kensington.Royal Mail has also created a special postmark to mark Trollope’s bicentenary.  This will appear on stamped mail across the United Kingdom from 24 April for one week.  Royal Mail only issues special postmarks for major events in the UK or to mark special historic dates.

Pillar boxes were instrumental in changing the postal service during the latter half of the 19th century as they were installed across the UK.  Royal Mail is supporting The British Postal Museum & Archive’s “Pop it in the Post” exhibition that examines those changes, The introduction of stamps and the expansion of the network of postboxes around the country made it easier and cheaper for people to send letters across the country.The Commemorative sheet will be available at selected Post Offices branches, online at and from Royal Mail Tallents House (tel. 03457 641 641), 21 South Gyle Crescent, Edinburgh, EH12 9PB.

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