THE first stamps featuring King Charles’ silhouette are to go on sale – but with some big differences.
The new 10-stamp set is a nod to the monarch’s love of gardening and celebrates the nation’s favourite flowers.
But unlike the old stamps featuring the silhouette of Queen Elizabeth II where she faced left, Charles is turned to the right in the new set.
He is not wearing the iconic laurel wreath either.
Royal Mail said the new set was a significant milestone in British postage stamp history.
The late Queen’s silhouette has featured on special stamps since 1966, although the design was updated in 1968.
The final set using the Queen’s image was unveiled last month in honour of the 100th anniversary of steam locomotive the Flying Scotsman.
David Gold, Royal Mail’s director of external affairs and policy, said: “Britain is a nation of gardeners, and a love of flowers runs deep in our collective consciousness.
“His Majesty is known to be a passionate gardener and we are delighted that the first special stamps to feature his silhouette should be a celebration of some of the most popular flowers in British gardens.”
Among the new stamps, one features a sweet pea, one of the late Queen’s favourite flowers.
Another is marked with the sunflower – the national flower of Ukraine, which has been at war with Russia since February 2022.
The other flowers in the first class set are a purple iris, pink lily, a fuchsia, an orange-red tulip, a dark pink peony, a bright orange nasturtium, a pale pink rose and a light purple-tinted dahlia.
The King’s silhouette was designed by illustrator Andrew Davidson, Royal Mail’s head of design and editorial Marcus James, and Ian Chilvers, from design agency Atelier Works.
Charles is known for his love of nature and is a keen gardener, having spent the last 40 years transforming the grounds around Highgrove House in Gloucestershire.
At his mother’s funeral, the King chose flowers cut from the gardens of Buckingham Palace, Clarence House and Highgrove for the gold, pink, deep burgundy and white wreath which rested on her coffin, and included pink garden roses and dark purple dahlias.
A Royal Mail spokesperson said: “Flowers mark our celebrations, our joys and our sorrows and, above all, they unify us through a pleasure that we can all understand.”
The first class floral stamps are available to pre-order from today (March 14) on the Royal Mail website or on 03457 641 641.
A presentation pack of the 10 stamps will go on general sale from March 23 priced at £10.40.