Stampex has been dedicated to philatelic interests for over 60 years and, since its beginning, Stanley Gibbons have been a regular presence at its shows.
This Autumn, we have a lot in store. In addition to showcasing our latest philatelic material, publications and accessories, we will be making a very special announcement.
Business Design Centre, Islington
Hugh Jefferies, editor of the Stanley Gibbons Catalogues, will reveal how a simple, 20-page price list of the world’s stamps became the multi-volume work of reference, now trusted by collectors the world over.
Following the discussion with Hugh Jefferies, CEO Graham Shircore will address our latest move towards reinvigorating Stanley Gibbons and the wider hobby.
Business Design Centre, Islington
London N1 OQH
Nearest Tube Station-Angel Islington (Northern Line)
While the Stampex name began life in 1956, the origins of the show can actually be traced back to 1953 and the Coronation Year National Stamp Exhibition.
That first exhibition was jointly organised by the Philatelic Traders’ Society (PTS)—which still remains the main organiser of Stampex today—and the Junior Philatelic Society (now known as the National Philatelic Society).
In 1954, the exhibition returned to Central Hall but without the Coronation reference to become the National Stamp Exhibition, a name it retained until 1956 when the exhibition became the more familiar Stampex—hence the 60th anniversary celebrations this year.
The annual event continued at Central Hall until 1969, at which time the exhibition took up residence at its new home at the Royal Horticultural Halls, Westminster.
In 1965 Stampex got a rival in the shape of the annual British Philatelic Exhibition (BPE). The BPE ran until 1986, at which point it was taken over by the Stampex organisers to become a second show held in the autumn.
The first such exhibition took place in 1987, billed as the ‘Autumn Stampex/BPE’. Since then, there have been two Stampex exhibitions a year—one held in spring and another in autumn. Stampex said goodbye to the Royal Horticultural Halls in 1995.
In spring 1996 the event was staged at its new home at the Business Design Centre (BDC), Islington, London N1, which has been its regular venue ever since.
Today, 60 plus years on from that inaugural exhibition, Stampex boasts more than 100 stamp dealers from all around the world.
Many dealers come back to Stampex year after year and are perfectly placed to comment on how the exhibition has developed over the years. Stanley Gibbons has been a Stampex regular since the 1950s.
SG Catalogue Editor and former Editor of GSM, Hugh Jefferies, reflects on a few highlights over the years: ‘The Stanley Gibbons stand has been a key feature of Stampex since the early days at the Central Hall.
Always striving to come up with something really special to attract more visitors to the show, undoubtedly its greatest public relations success came in 1966, when the Jules Rimet Football World Cup was exhibited on the stand—until it was stolen one night during the show, turning it into a bit of a PR disaster.’
To read the full history of Stampex over the years, you can access this article published in February 2016 from the online version of Gibbons Stamp Monthly.
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