Cleator & Workington Junction Railway Postage Stamp

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The Cleator and Workington Junction Railway was incorporated June 27th, 1876, and opened October 1st, 1879. In January 1889 a stamp was issued for the carriage of letters on the railway. In philately, a railway stamp is a stamp issued to pay the cost of the conveyance of a letter or parcel by rail.

Prior to the railway, the Post Office had a monopoly on the despatch of letters from a sender to receiver. In 1891, the Post Office agreed to railways providing their own delivery service, however the railway stamp had to be affixed next to a standard postage stamp so that letters could still be delivered by the Post Office. The railway letter fee was always fixed at twice the postage fee.

Cleator Moor & Workington railway letter stamps were lithographed by Messrs. W. H. Moss and Sons, Limited of Whitehaven, and were issued on January 29th, 1891.

In 1901 Herbert L’Estrange Ewen published his 448 page History Of Railway Letter Stamps. Mr. M. Knowles, Secretary to Messrs. W. H. Moss, told Ewen that there had been one printing at Whitehaven, consisting of 248 sheets, each sheet containing twelve stamps arranged in four rows of three.

Few railway stamps were issued across the UK, thus they are very difficult for collectors to locate which adds to their value.  The stamp displayed above is unmounted and in mint condition.

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Cleator Moor | Cumbria: Little Ireland: Cleator & Workington Junction Railway Postage Stamp
Cleator & Workington Junction Railway Postage Stamp
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Cleator Moor | Cumbria: Little Ireland
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