HC Deb 02 April 1965 vol 709 cc296-7W
Mr. Hobden

asked the Postmaster-General if he will make arrangements for a permanent exhibition of the history of British postage stamps.

Mr. Benn

Some time ago Mr. Reginald M. Phillips of Brighton put forward to the Post Office certain proposals that he had originated for the establishment of a National Postal Museum for Great Britain.

I am pleased to announce that today, as a result of the subsequent discussions we have had with him, Mr. Phillips handed over to me his unique and comprehensive collection of nineteenth century British stamps for its permanent preservation as a national treasure for the purpose of establishing such a Museum. In addition to this magnificent gift he has also handed me a sum of £50,000 towards its maintenance. The Museum will be situated in a Post Office Building in Central London, and will be opened in about three years' time. The material in Mr. Phillips' collection, together with that from our own archives, will enable us to mount a series of exhibitions illustrating the development of the adhesive postage stamp from the days of the Treasury Competition. The concept of the adhesive postage stamp has been one of the great contributions of this country to the development of national and international communication, a contribution of which we in the Post Office are justly proud, and I am confident that the detailed story of the British stamp which will be presented will be of the greatest interest to the general public in this country and to visitors from abroad.

I should like to take this opportunity to put on record my admiration for the great generosity and imagination of Mr. Phillips which has been an inspiring force in this project.

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