festabbey.jpg (44474 bytes)

Founded - 1938

Birthplace of James Chalmers

Inventor of the Adhesive Postage Stamp

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In 1999 Mr Jan. Raschke was awarded the Order of Merit from the Scottish Philatelic Association. The award was in recognition of his work in providing a special first day cover for the issue of 1st April 1970.  He also organised and designed the special cancellation for the 650th Anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Scottish Independence in the Arbroath Abbey.  This cancellation was the first pictorial cancellation to state the place, county and country. Mr Raschke drew the Postmaster General's attention to the fact that the signing in the Abbey was on 6th April and not the 1st. Mr Rashke is pictured receiving his award in Falkirk from Alexander 'Sandy' Forbes of the Dundee Society, watched by Mr Ron Marr - Secretary of Arbroath & District Stamp & Postcard Club.

Read the Declaration of Arbroath

Bellrock Lighthouse

On 24th March 1988 the Post Office issued a set of stamps featuring lighthouses. Arbroath & District Stamp & postcard Club issued a special commemorative cover featuring the Bellrock Lighthouse. A separate larger cover featuring all the stamps in the set was also issued in very limited numbers.

This is the full set issued on 24th March 1998

St John's Point Lighthouse.jpg (50834 bytes)  The Smalls Lighthouse.jpg (53819 bytes)  Needles Lighthouse.jpg (54069 bytes)  Bellrock Lighthouse.jpg (23481 bytes)  Eddistone Lighthouse.jpg (48337 bytes)

click stamps to enlarge



from an article by 

Rhoda Spence

James Chalmers was a native of Arbroath who moved to Dundee and established himself there as a bookseller, printer and publisher, eventually serving as a Town Councillor and becoming Convener of the Nine Incorporated Trades. Like many mild—looking people, he seems to have been a slayer of the dragons which retard progress, battling repeatedly in the cause of Burgh Reform, and fighting for the repeal of taxes on newspapers and newspaper advertisements, and the removal of the excise duty on paper.

His most burning enthusiasm, however, was postal reform, and to the delight of his fellow business-men, he managed to induce the authorities to speed up the mail between Dundee and London by a day each way, convincing them that this could be done without extra cost.

That he was far advanced in his scheme for an adhesive postage stamp in 1834, six years before the Penny Post was introduced, was later borne out not only by Dundee and Arbroath men of standing, but by employees in his printing-works. These afterwards recalled their work in applying gum to the slips and clipping the sample stamps apart—for the perforation was a subsequent refinement and came from another source.

Nor was James Chalmers’ plan imperfect, for he had worked out all its details, and had suggested the now universal means of paying for letters and packages of different weights by stamps of different colours. He even costed the expense of producing the stamps so accurately that his figure varied by the merest fraction from the estimate of those who later printed stamps for the government.

When the subject of a universal rate of postage came up in Parliament in 1839 James Chalmers submitted the plan he had worked out six years earlier, and when suggestions for making the Penny Post feasible were invited from the public, he sent it in again, this time backed by a testimonial from the merchants, bankers, and other leading citizens of Dundee. This is perhaps the most striking evidence that his reputation as originator of the stamp was already established, for shrewd business men do not back cranks or visionaries.

But with the introduction of the Penny Post in 1840, no recognition came to the quiet man whose adhesive stamp had made it possible. This was fought for much later by his fifth son Patrick, then resident in London after many years in the East. Patrick Chalmers’ ardent propaganda, carried on for twelve years, had support not only from many postal reformers in this country, but from philatelic experts on the Continent. After his death the cause was furthered by his elder daughter Leah, who worked untiringly to vindicate her grandfather’s claim to the title now engraved in stone above the site of his bookseller’s shop in Dundee” Originator of the Adhesive Postage Stamp.”

The above text taken from an article in the Scottish Magazine published in 1987

Arbroath & District Stamp and Postcard Club 50th Anniversary Cover


Please note: 

   Meetings are held on the third Tuesday of each month from September to April at 7.30pm and all visitors will be made welcome. For this season the September, October & November meetings shall be held in Knox's Church Hall. The December meeting shall be in the same hall on Tuesday 9th, thereafter meetings for January, February, March & April will be held in the upper meeting room of Arbroath Public Library.


 2008 - 2009 Syllabus                                                                 UP





September 16th  - Visit from Dundee Philatelic Society

October 21st - Mr Chad Neighbour - "Mail from Abilene" & "Multiple Choice"

November 18th - Mr Tom Valentine - "Postal History of Angus - Inland"

December 9th - Members Night - 6 Sheets featuring the Letter "Q" + Swap Night - Bring along your duplicates for exchange with other members.



January 20th - Club Auction Night.

February 17th - Stewart Smith from Postcard Club of Tayside.

March 17th - Steve & Irene - "An Evening with the Porterfields".

April 21st - A.G.M. - Viewing of Competition entries and Presentation of Trophies.


Please submit Competition entires of 10 Sheets plus a Title sheet if required by March meeeting.

Competitions are in 2 Catagories:

J.S. Gordon Cup - One Country.

Thematic trophy - Any Theme.


Club Auction

If you wish to include material in the annual auction please prepare and price items, and have them to Mr. W.P. Cargill by December 9th, or earlier if possible.


Exchange Packets

Material for the Exchange Packets is always required and can be handed to the Packet Secretary at any time.


Stamp & Postcard Fair  

We hope to hold another fair in 2009, but this will depend on the availability of St Andrews Church Hall. This will be advised later. 




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