In celebration of one hundred years of history and service of The Royal Air Force, IOM post office issued a set of eight commemorative stamps, officially licensed by the Ministry of Defence.
The stamps highlight the rich history and legacy of the Royal Air Force (RAF) – the world’s first independent air force.
100 years of The Royal Air Force
On the 1st of April 2018, the RAF celebrates the 100th anniversary of its foundation in 1918.
RAF was formed through the amalgamation of the Royal Flying Corps (RFC) and the Royal Naval Air Service (RNAS); it is the oldest independent air force in the world.
The eight stamps pay a tribute to all who have served in the RAF in the last century.
The eight stamps present the images of well-known iconic aircrafts from the entire history of the Royal Air Force.
A unique feature of this stamp collection is the incredible depth of information that each stamp contains in relation to the RAF history.
The stamps not only include images of iconic RAF aircraft – from the earlier fighter aircraft such as the Sopwith Camel to the more recent Typhoon and Lighting II – they also contain other details such as key airfields, personnel, medal ribbons, flags and the RAF Ensign.
These additional features add texture and depth to the stamps and reflect the wealth of information that 100 years of history of the world’s greatest air force has to offer.
As an added bonus, each stamp also includes a secret message in Morse code, which is only visible under UV light.
Once deciphered, the message reveals the well-known poem ‘High Flight’, by John Gillespie Magee, a Canadian Air Force pilot who trained at the RAF Cranwell, Lincolnshire.
The final stamp of the set includes his Spitfire call sign and engine number.
– Gibraltar Postage stamps paying tribute to Royal Air Force Squadrons
– Jersey stamps to celebrate 75 years of the RAF Search and Rescue Force
– Stamps to mark 75th Anniversary of The Battle of Britain
RAF in the Isle of Man
The RAF was formed on the 1st of April 1918 towards the end of World War 1.
Twenty-one years later RAF bases started to open on the Isle of Man, beginning with RAF Jurby in September 1939.
Two years later RAF Andreas was opened as a fighter airfield.
While in 1940 the civilian aerodrome at Ronaldsway became RAF Ronaldsway.
RAF Air-Sea Rescue marine craft was based at Ramsey, Peel, Douglas, and Castletown during the war years.
RAF Benevolent Fund
One of the key charities that support the RAF is the RAF Benevolent Fund, which cares for more than 65,000 serving and former RAF personnel and their families.
The 100 Years of the RAF Stamp Sheets and Prestige Booklet acknowledges the significance and impact of the Benevolent Fund.
Prestige Booklet is a 24-page full-color booklet that contains two sets of adhesive RAF stamps.
The booklet also includes additional text on the history of the RAF written by Air Vice Marshal David Murray OBE, Controller of the Benevolent Fund.
Stamp designer – Ben Glazier
Ben Glazier and his team at Glazier Design in London designed the RAF stamp collection.
Ben’s grandfather Geoffrey Glazier was a Royal Flying Corps pilot on active duty in France on the 1st of April 1918, making him one of the first RAF Officer Pilots on that first day.
You can visit the Official website of the Royal Air Force to get more information on aircraft, stations, history, and current news.
Title: 100 years of The Royal Air Force
Date of Issue: 15 January 2018
Country: Isle of Man
Denominations: 1st x 2, £1 x 2, EU x 2, RoW x 2
Source: Isle of Man Stamps