• Stephen says
  • My view of NZ2020 – Andrew McNiven
  • Covid-19
  • Club news
  • National and International Exhibition Reports

Stephen says –

Welcome to this first newsletter of 2020.  Time has really gone quickly, and we are now three-quarters through the year.  I hope you are all well and the virus and lockdown has not had too much effect on you.

First, I must apologise for the delay in getting this newsletter out since our previous one in 2019.  Some of us on Federation got heavily involved with the NZ2020 international exhibition and, the closer the exhibition got, it absorbed a lot of any spare time we had.  With the cancellation of the international part of the exhibition and the early finishing of the re-arranged National exhibition, a lot of wind was taken out of our sails and trying to do all the tidy up afterwards some Federation duties took a back step.  However, we are now back into it.  I am sure things will get back on track now that NZ2020 is behind us and look forward to what we can achieve in the future.

With this newsletter I would like to welcome Andrew McNiven as the new NZPF newsletter editor working closely with the secretary.

Covid 19

To begin with, the virus seemed to be mainly an overseas problem until it hit our shores in March.  Our borders were closed one week before the NZ2020 exhibition.  If the exhibition had been held a week earlier thing may well have been different.

With the subsequent lockdown and travel put on hold suddenly people had a lot of spare time.  Even though I was able to continue working from home, not having to travel to work every day meant I had over an hour extra time every workday.  With this extra time, and not been able to travel much, I could spend a lot more time sorting out cartons of stamps bought years ago and sticking then in albums.

This was OK to begin with until my stock of 5000+ hinges ran out.  That is when I found out many stamp dealers had been doing a roaring trade over the lockdown period and stamp accessorises were now in short supply.  Some had never been as busy in the last 20 or so years.  I also hear the lockdown meant collectors who had given up the hobby a few years back now had the time to get back into it again.

The lockdown gave some of us some more spare time to look for material on the net.  The only trouble was most of the overseas postal administrations were also affected with some closing down completely.  This meant mail was sometimes taking months to arrive and I am still waiting for some items five months on.

Society meetings

Societies had to cancel meetings during the lockdown and as we moved out of Level 4 others were able to recommence but with social distancing.  I have the impression numbers at meetings are yet to get back to pre-Covid attendances.  Covid also prompted some societies to arrange video conference meetings (e.g. Zoom).  This was particularly true of overseas specialist societies.  I have been a member of the Indian Study Circle for the last 40 or so years.  Being an overseas member meant the only interaction with the club was their magazine and auctions.  Now I can join their Zoom meetings held once a fortnight.  A problem is the meetings are held at a time to suit members in the UK and India.  In NZ time this means 0230 to 0430 which mucks up my sleep.

The FIP Postal History and Postal Stationery Commissions have also been having Zoom meeting.

The NZPF has also used Zoom for our last two meetings and have found it worked very well.  It also made it easy calling a special meeting at short notice (we held one in June); the secretary and I were able to ‘meet’ our colleagues in the Australian Philatelic Federation (and we hope to arrange further such meetings when the need arises) and this saves us quite a bit of money as we do not have to hire a meeting room nor pay for air travel.  So, going forward, we are looking at a mixture of face-to-face and Zoom meetings.


NZ2020 was to have been the first international exhibition of the year.  With its cancellation many other have been obliged to follow suit.  Many exhibitions programmed for this year have either been cancelled while others postponed to 2022 or 2023.  The NZ2020 Stamp Exhibition Committee plans to hold a replacement exhibition in 2023.

To replace the void, some countries like Bangladesh, Australia, USA and the UK have held or plan to hold virtual philatelic exhibitions – both one and multi-frame – and these are available for everyone to see on the appropriate website.  It will be interesting to see how these progress over and Federation must consider whether we follow suit.

I can be contacted by email at any time – [email protected]

Stephen Chivers

My view of NZ 2020

Andrew McNiven

I headed off to NZ2020 on Tuesday 17 March with the idea of spending some time assisting on the NZPF stand, catching up with various people and looking around the exhibits and dealer stands.

That changed when I was contacted by Alan Hollows from NZ Post who advised due to company travel restrictions New Zealand Post was not attending the show and Philatelic Distributors (Chris and Daniel Wells) from New Plymouth had offered to sell the NZ Post product.  I approached Chris to see if I could assist and the offer was gratefully accepted.

NZ2020 – Andrew McNiven and Chris Wells at Philatelic Distributors/NZ Post stand.

From arrival just before the show opened on 19 March, right through to the show being closed early at 1pm on Saturday 21 March the NZ Post stand was kept busy with collectors keen to purchase the special limited edition numbered miniature sheets released each day.

NZ Post subsequently made the following statement:

The role that Andrew McNiven played at NZ2020 on the NZ Post stand was to assist Philatelic Distributors who NZ Post had appointed as their exhibition sales agent when NZ Post staff were unable to attend the exhibition.

Because Southern Colour Print also did not attend the exhibition, their perforator machine was not at the exhibition so the imperf miniature sheet was not supplied for sale.

At the close of the exhibition, all 3 limited edition numbered miniature sheets (1 – 200) were sold out. The remaining fourth day numbered miniature sheet featuring the lighthouses was not sold and all stock will be destroyed.

In regard to the silver sheet, which was only available at the exhibition, NZ Post can advise that stocks of the sheet did not sell out, but all remaining stocks will be destroyed.  The number of silver miniature sheets sold or produced is not being disclosed by NZ Post in line with its long-standing policy.

Product from the exhibition that is available for sale is available through –
https://stamps.nzpost.co.nz/new-zealand/2020/nz-international-stamp-exhibition and includes the unnumbered Lighthouse miniature sheet cancelled on 22 March, which was to be the last day of the exhibition.

The 22 March date stamp will also be made available through the NZ Post Special Date stamp postcard service and has been used to cancel mail posted in the 22 March posting box at the exhibition and through collector and dealer requests.

While I didn’t get to see the displays, it was a great experience to be able to meet a number of NZ Post’s philatelic customers over the two and a half days the exhibition was open and assist them with their purchases of the restricted range of products placed on sale.

Selling out of the 200 numbered miniature sheets was a great achievement, as each customer was limited to two sheets per purchase.

After not having any ink for the date stamps for the first day – once the ink arrived – the date stamps were made available for collectors to be able to cancel their own covers – a number of collectors advised this was the first time they had cancelled mail!


The Covid-19 alert level system become a new way of engagement and communication since the initial introduction of Level 2 on Saturday 21 March, moving to Level 3 on 23 March with those of us travelling around the country, and back from NZ2020 needing to return home before Level 4 lockdown at 11.59pm on Wednesday 25 March.

Impact on postal services

With the announcement by New Zealand Post on 25 March it would continue to “deliver essentials” further new terms came about with “social distancing” being used to request customers to stay – 2 metres from the courier, Delivery Agent or Rural Driver.  We were at least able to continue to communicate by mail to friends and family in New Zealand. https://www.nzpost.co.nz/about-us/media-centre/media-release/new-zealand-post-services-will-continue-to-deliver-essentials-at-level-4

PostShop services were not an “essential service” and remained closed until the move to Level 3 on Monday 27 April.  I had the experience of mailing from Wellington some envelopes and stamps to a rest home in Auckland as they had run out!  Feedback from dealers, and observing Trade Me, plenty of philatelic products were ordered for our hobby in the lockdown, with orders being filled and delivered in Level 3.

With the mail we receive from overseas, the service was and remains today a challenge.  Airlines which remain flying have increased their mail and cargo rates with a number charging for a minimum weight uplift per container.  Some postal operators have set-up hubs to assist others. The dispatching by sea is now the new normal for some routes. For those who have items mailed to them with “tracking” the information is not always reliable, or showing delays with mail being moved until the next scan appears – some days or weeks later. New Zealand Post put up an online update for mail both to and from New Zealand, back in mid-March which is updated regularly. https://www.nzpost.co.nz/contact-support/international-delivery-updates. It is interesting to note that some postal administrations have been returning mail to senders, advising that service is not available to a particular country.

With Victoria, Australia being in their Level 4 the Australia Post international facility in Melbourne has reduced staffing, reduced deliveries and inbound mail being routed to other airports in Australia for border control clearance.

We can certainly be thankful for the ‘go hard – go early’ approach taken by the Government and Ministry of Health.

There is also a different way of communicating with customers, these days where much information is available on organisations websites, of Facebook page rather than media releases being published – which can be out of date by the time the information is published in the local weekly community newspaper.


With many of their members being in the “at risk” age group – i.e. 70 years and older – most clubs and societies opted not hold physical meetings until the move to Level 1.

For some, their committees met by Zoom or some other online meeting platform, newsletters continued to flow via email, with most printers being closed.  For those digitally connected all sorts of newsletters and stamp publications were doing the rounds.

Many regular events such as Stamp Fairs were postponed or cancelled.  For example, the Central Districts Expo was postponed from March to October but when New Zealand moved from Level 1 to 2 the decision was made to cancel the 2020 event.  Whangarei’s fair including the NZ Inter-club One-frame Competition was all set to run but Auckland at Level 3 meant visitors and dealers from there could not travel to Whangarei which was at Level 2.  The event was then cancelled.

Remember, changes to your society or club programme should be advised by email direct to [email protected]  – he will do his best to update the information as quickly as possible.

Club News

The following details are summarised from reports presented to the Federation meeting in July 2020 by the regional delegates and have been further updated as appropriate by the editor.  Reports from previous meetings including November 2019, April 2020 and June 2020 have not been included but are mentioned in the Minutes of those Executive meetings sent to members by email on 31 August with a subsequent copy by mail.

Please ensure your delegates are advised of your club’s activities and concerns so they may be raised at Federation meetings.

All delegates reported on the impact COVID-19 had on club meetings.

PHILATELIC YOUTH COUNCIL – https://www.pycnz.org/  (Tim Beach)

COVID-19 halted youth meetings and activities. All three clubs are now having meetings again.

Youth club numbers remain low and additional marketing is needed to attempt to gain members.

PYC have applied for COGS funding again and indications are we will receive support again.

We are hoping we will be able to produce an issue of Fun Philately shortly and this should provide material for youth, mainly outside where our clubs are, to encourage their collecting.

NORTHERN REGION (Chris Keery & Tim Beach)

Clubs with surplus Federation exhibition frames have started to dispose of them with Auckland Philatelic Society sending two boxes to Whangarei for use at the One Frame Exhibition.  These will not be returned to Auckland.  COVID prevented any further disposal.

Upcoming events are –

  • Saturday 3 October 2020 North Shore Annual Competitive Exhibition, St George’s Church Hall, The Terrace, Takapuna.
  • Saturday 31 October 2020 Waikato Ambury Shield Interclub Competition, Fairfield Baptist Church Hall, 1101 Heaphy Terrace, Hamilton


Paul McTaggart has been re-elected (unopposed) as a Central Region Delegate for a further two-year term.

As Commissioner for Canberra 2020 Stamp Show Paul went into “self-isolation” upon his return to NZ as part of the Ministry of Health directives and was not able to attend NZ2020.

The New Zealand Society of Great Britain held a successful general international meeting via Zoom.

Manawatu Philatelic Society ran a “Explore the Library Tour” on 15 July 2020 to promote the Society’s library and this attracted eight members to attend at the Regional Te Manawa Museum, Palmerston North. The society holds the entries from the First (1989) to Thirteenth (2013) National Philatelic Literature Exhibitions.  These entries are available for borrowing to members of NZPF affiliated societies in New Zealand.  For further details refer to the Manawatu Philatelic Society page on the Federation website at https://nzpf.org.nz/societies-clubs/manawatu-philatelic-society/ under the section “National Philatelic Literature Exhibition Library Holding”.


The annual get together of the Marlborough and Nelson societies which was to take place in August was cancelled.

No other report tabled for the rest of the South Island.

National and International Exhibition Reports

The following details are summarised from reports presented to the Federation meetings in November 2019 and April 2020.  Minutes of the Executive meetings sent by email on 31 August and subsequent copy by mail to member clubs and societies mentioned that reports were provided.

Singpex 2019 FIAP 31 July – 4 August (Stephen Chivers)

The exhibition was held on the 3rd floor of the Suntec Singapore Convention & Exhibition Centre. The exhibition commemorated Singapore’s 200th anniversary and 100 years of the country’s first airmail service.  There were 242 exhibits in 1202 frames (including 53 frames of postcard exhibits) plus 37 Literature exhibits, resulting in 10 Large gold and 36 Gold medals being awarded.  Nine New Zealanders visited the exhibition.

David Lowe Iceland to the First World War TRAD, 8fr, 87pts, LV
Hadley Muller Native Birds of New Zealand Yth B Postcard, 1 fr, 80pts, V
Jeff & Jenny Long Postcard Pillar, Journal of the New Zealand Postcard Society LIT, 80pts, V
Jeff Long W T Wilson, Photographer & Post Card Publisher, Auckland, New Zealand Postcard, 8fr, 90pts, G
Jenny Long A Study of New Zealand Pictorial Postcards Postcard, 8fr, 91pts, G
Lindsay Chitty New Zealand Prisoner of War Aerogrammes and Postcards 1941-1945 1-frame PS 86pts
Lindsay Chitty The New Zealand 1½d Boer War Contingent Stamp and Postal Use 1-frame TR 88pts
Monica Comrie Civil Censorship Process Australia WW II PH, 8fr, 88 pts, LV
Nilo Dizon Jr The Hologram in Philately Modern, 5fr, 80 pts, V
Stephen Chivers NZ 1985-90 Janet Marshall Designed Endangered Bird Stamps Modern, 5fr, 87pts, LV
The Royal Philatelic Society of New Zealand The New Zealand Stamp Collector LIT, 81pts, V

Sharjah 2019 EPA National 19 – 23 November (Josh Black)

Sharjah was a unique experience in both culture and judging for myself.  On being appointed commissioner for Sharjah late in August, I actually had very little to do in regard to getting exhibits for the Exhibition as Jenny Banfield had pretty much done all of this for me before handing over to me.

A total of twenty-two frames from six exhibitors were accepted from around New Zealand,

It is worth noting that depending on what exhibits you are taking overseas to check that there is no material in an exhibit that they may consider a biohazard for example leaves and seeds etc.  If you suspect that an entry you might carry has such items its worth contacting the exhibitor to ask them and if they do have such items that they get a good photograph of the item and mount this in its place with an explanatory note saying why you used a photo.  Photo used in place of original leaf, seed, shell, etc. for biosecurity reasons.

There were commissioners from a number of countries who were all very friendly and spoke good English.

Louise Brownie The Kauri Tree 5 fr 80 V
Monica Comrie Honey 5 fr 78 LS
Ron & Shirley Hebberd American Civil War Revenues 1862-1883 5 fr 86 LV
Nilo Dizon Jr The Hologram in Philately 5 fr 79 LS
Jeff Long New Zealand Customs Dept Inwards Parcel Labels 1 fr 78 LS
Douglas Tennant What a Difference a year makes- Airmail carried from NZ in March 1933 and March 1944 1 fr 89 LV

Aeropex 2019 Adelaide (Australian Specialised) 6 – 8 December (Norman Banfield)

A specialised Australian National Exhibition with FISA (Fédération Internationale des Sociétés Aérophilatéliques) Patronage to celebrate the 100th Anniversary of Ross and Keith Smith’s (plus two mechanics) flight from England 12 November 1919 to Australia 10 December 1919 to win the Australian Government’s £A10,000 reward for the first plane to fly from England to Australia.

The Smith brothers and mechanic Wally Shiers were all born in South Australia.  The plane was a twin-engine Vickers Vimy.  A model of the plane was in the exhibition hall.  The original will go on display at Adelaide Airport.

There were 107 (80 being competitive) entries in 392 frames and with 10 Literature items.  A total of 30 frames from New Zealand.

John Comrie Airlines of the World 5 fr OP 70 LS
Robert Duns By Airmail to NZ 1931 – 1945 2 fr AE 78 V
Steven Ferguson Airmail to NZ 1925 – 1950 8 fr AE 88 G
Terry Isaac Newfoundland: First/Early Airmail Flights 1921 – 1947 2 fr AE 84 LV
Robert Livingston Canterbury Aviation (NZ) Ltd 1 fr AE 90 LG
Ross Marshall Transcontinental Flights between Russia & Antarctica 5 fr AE 81 LV
Rick Oxenham Motorcycle Courier Service – CAM 1, USA 1 fr AE 89 G
Bob Watson Airmails from USA to NZ 1927 – 1946 1 fr AE 90 LG

** = Special Prize
R Oxenham – non-competitive Hydro Aviation – the Sea Plane 5 fr OP

Canberra 2020 (Australian Half-national) 13 – 15 March (Paul McTaggart)

This Biennial Exhibition was the 21st of such events organised by the Philatelic Society of Canberra.  The exhibition offered National Classes including Postal History, Aerophilately, Postal Stationery, Revenues, Literature, Youth and Picture Postcards.

The exhibition marked the 250th Anniversary of Cook’s voyage to Australia and the 50th Anniversary of Honeysuckle Creek’s first TV transmission from the moon of Neil Armstrong’s moon walk.  Other major events recognised were the 150th anniversary of the commencement of a Sydney – San Francisco Mail Steamer Service and the 50th anniversary of the completion of the Transcontinental Railway between Perth and Sydney.  All these major events were recognised in philatelic material produced by the exhibition committee.

There were 74 entries including 61 National level exhibits and 13 state-level entries.

New Zealand contributed 32 Frames from 11 exhibitors, plus one Literature entry with six exhibitors achieving Large Vermeil or above.

Tony Thackery, New Zealand Letter Cards from Queen Victoria to King George VI, Postal S, 5 fr, 83 LV
Lindsay Chitty, Civilian Internee Mail, Japanese Occupation of the Far East, 5 fr, Postal H 91 LG
Lindsay Chitty, Postal use of the 1931 Pre-Decimal Arms Type Stamps, Postal H, 5 fr, 83 LV
Denise Rosenfeldt, Cornwall Park, Auckland, Postcards, 2 fr, 74 LS
Jenny Banfield, Anthropomorphic Cats, Postcards, 3 fr, 77 V
Sinclair McLean, The Frugal Scotsman, Postcards, 2 fr, 72 LS
Suzan Claridge, The Egyptian Syndicates of the Medical Profession, Revenues, 5 fr, 86 G
Olivia Cheng, Equestrian at the Olympics, Youth, 1 fr, 69 S
Andrew Sknar, From the Abacus to the Personal Computer, Youth, 1 fr, 82 LV
Andrew Sknar, The Discovery and Re-discovery of New Zealand, Youth, 1 fr, 66 S
Arthur Koutsaenko, Critique of the Soviet Union, Youth, 2 fr, 69 S
Jeff & Jenny Long, The Postcard Pillar, Lit, 85 G

The following New Zealand entries won prizes.
Suzan Claridge won the best in Revenues
Andrew Sknar won the runner up for Youth.

The Postcard Pillar won the best in Literature Class.

NZ2020 (FIAP reduced to National) planned 19 – 22 March closed early 1pm 21 March (Stephen Chivers)

555 of the 1220 frames originally planned were set-up.  The exhibits and displays were inserted into the frames, with 256 frames of NZ Competition entries, 189 frames of NZ invited displays and 110 frames of photocopies of entries provided by exhibitors from Thailand.

At 10am on 19 March the exhibition opened with 13 dealers and the New Zealand Post sales stand on the ground floor and 555 frames of exhibits on the Third Floor.  A jury team of six judged the 256 NZ frames.

Everyone entering and leaving the venue was asked to sign in and out providing details such as telephone and email contact. Operating under the NZ Government COVID-19 requirements the maximum number of people at any event was 500.  At 3pm on 19 March the figure was altered to a maximum number of people at an indoor event to 100.


Figure: Everybody entering the venue was obliged to wear an identification label.  The organisers were able to control the numbers by having only a set number of labels.

Figure: While the number of people able to enter the venue was limited the dealer stands appeared quite busy.  Adjusting their expectations due to the conditions imposed most dealers reported very acceptable results.

With the opening on 20 March, security, people manning the stands, café staff and jury members meant the number of visitors was limited to 70 on the Ground Floor and 80 on the Third Floor, with everyone entering each level having to sign in and when leaving sign out.  This seemed to work well, and some visitors even had to wait until someone left before they could enter.


On 21 March, an announcement by Government was made at 12 Noon that those over 70 years of age and those with health issues were required to stay at home.  The organising committee decided that, as most of our visitors would fit into that age bracket, there was no choice but to close the show.  Less than an hour later the exhibits and frames were being emptied.  The Palmares and dinner planned for that evening, was also called off.

NZ 2020 Awards
These are shown on the NZPF website at –https://nzpf.org.nz/nz2020-national-results/

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