Similar to a recent issue by the United States Postal Service (USPS), the Guernsey stamps use thermochromic ink to mimic the eclipse, which will take place Aug. 21. Each of the six designs represent a different coastal location that will see a partial eclipse next month. The stamps reveal full eclipses as well as the altitude and direction of the eclipse for each location upon coming into contact with warmth.
The locations include:
- Vancouver, B.C. (44-pence denomination);
- Miami, Fla. (59-pence denomination);
- Hamilton, Bermuda (60-pence denomination);
- Dakar, Senegal (73-pence denomination);
- Saint Anne, Alderney (80-pence denomination); and
- Anadyr, Russia (90-pence denomination).
“We are delighted to release six stamps that celebrate this celestial event, particularly as we are able to feature Alderney, which has exceptionally good visibility for astronomical events and where the partial eclipse begins at 19.41,” said Bridget Yabsley, head of philately at Guernsey Post. “Stargazers on the island should cast their eyes upwards at 20.07 to enjoy the maximum view of the eclipse.”
The USPS issued its first stamp using heat-sensitive ink—the “Total Eclipse of the Sun” Forever stamp—on June 20.
The Guernsey eclipse stamps were designed by The Potting Shed and printed by Johan Enschede using offset-lithography.
In addition to a set of six stamps, the recent issue includes a presentation pack; a souvenir sheet; a first-day cover; a souvenir sheet first-day cover; and a souvenir sheet pack insert. Each of the six stamps is also available in sheets of 10 stamps.
Because thermochromic inks are vulnerable to ultraviolet light, the stamps should be kept out of direct sunlight as much as possible to preserve their effect.
For more information, visit the Guernsey Post website.