Grime's Graves to feature in new stamp set showcasing icons of British prehistory
An ancient Norfolk landmark is to be shared around the country as Royal Mail releases a set of stamps celebrating objects and sites from British prehistory.
Grime’s Graves flint mines are one of eight special scenes to feature on the stamps, which depict iconic UK sites and artefacts dating back 11,000 years.
Illustrated by London-based artist Rebecca Strickson, the stamps have been designed as overlay illustrations, detailing how people lived and worked at these sites and used the objects from the Mesolithic era of 9,000 BC to the Iron Age, around 300 BC.
The prehistoric mines near Thetford – dug more than 5,000 years ago – will feature alongside the Drumbest horns from Northern Ireland, the Battersea shield, Skara Brae village in the Orkney Islands, the Avebury stone circles, Maiden Castle hillfort in Dorset, the Welsh Mold Cape and the Star Carr headdress from North Yorkshire.
Philip Parker, stamp strategy manager at Royal Mail, said; “The UK has an incredibly rich heritage of prehistoric sites and exceptional artefacts. These new stamps explore some of these treasures and give us a glimpse of everyday life in prehistoric Britain, from the culture of ancient ritual and music making to sophisticated metalworking and the building of huge hill forts.”
The Ancient House Museum in Thetford has just finished a year long exhibition, Flint Rocks, celebrating the long and rich history of flint mining in the Brecks.
Museum curator Oliver Bone said: “We are absolutely delighted that our local site is appearing on a stamp and that its international significance will be spread about the country and the world.
“It is really good that eastern England is represented and Grime’s Graves is a good choice – it is very distinctive and was of national significance.”
Maria Spampanato, site manager at Grime’s Graves for English Heritage, said: “It is a wonderful accolade to be featured on a Royal Mail stamp and will help to raise the profile of Grime’s Graves across the country.
“We are the only Neolithic flint mine which is open to visitors in Britain so the site is a unique and fascinating insight into prehistoric history.”
For each of the stamps, Royal Mail will provide a special postmark on all mail posted in a postbox close to where the site is located or the artefact found.
To obtain the special handstamp on their Grime’s Graves stamp, customers should post at the postbox at West Tofts Camp near Thetford between January 17 and 21.
The stamps are available from January 17 at 7,000 Post Office branches across the UK and at www.royalmail.com/ancientbritain