World’s rarest stamp coming to Stampex

The world’s rarest and most expensive stamp will be displayed this fall in London, England, as part of the twice-yearly Stampex show.

The one-of-a-kind British Guiana one-cent magenta stamp, dating back to 1856, was last sold at auction in 2021, when it fetched £6.5 million (nearly $10 million Cdn.). Considered the world’s most expensive item by weight, it’s going on display from Sept. 27-30 at Stampex, organized by the U.K.-based Philatelic Traders’ Society (PTS).

“We are delighted that Stanley Gibbons are bringing the one-cent magenta to Stampex,” said Simon Carson, who chairs both the PTS and Stampex. “As the world’s rarest and most expensive stamp, it is wonderful to have it as part of our show and to be able to share it with our community.”

Produced as a temporary provisional issue while awaiting a delayed shipment, the stamp has since been signed by several iconic owners, including oil company heir John du Pont and shoe designer Stuart Weitzman.

Now owned by U.K. philatelic firm Stanley Gibbons, which will display the rarity at Stampex, the stamp stands as the only major piece missing from Britain’s Royal Philatelic Collection.

The upcoming show will also feature a bourse with dozens of dealers, including Canada’s Chris Green, of Ottawa, plus exhibits, seminars and a youth program.

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