Amazing inventions

We reveal 10 new stamps celebrating the innovative advancements and ground-breaking inventions of the Industrial and Electric Revolutions

Today, we revealed images of 10 stamps that explore the ingenuity and pioneering spirit behind some of the most notable inventions and scientific and engineering advances made during the first Industrial Revolution and the subsequent ‘Electric Revolution’.

Six of the stamps explore key advances that were part of the Industrial Revolution: the Bessemer process, Watt’s rotative steam engine, the Penydarren locomotive, the Spinning jenny, Lombe’s silk mill and Portland cement.

The inventions of the ‘first Industrial Revolution’ harnessed water and steam power to revolutionise our lives – changing the way our ancestors lived, worked, travelled and manufactured materials to produce goods and services on a grand scale never seen before on our shores.

A further four stamps, presented in a Miniature Sheet, depict advances of the Electric Revolution and the harnessing of electricity – which accelerated the speed of change and gave us the power that made long distance communications possible, changing our daily lives forever.

Royal Mail worked with Barrie Trinder on the stamp issue. Barry is the author of Britain's Industrial Revolution: The Making of a Manufacturing People, 1700–1870 and numerous other books on the subject. Also consulted were Professor Iwan Rhys Morus of Aberystwyth University and Professor Gillian Cookson of the University of Leeds. For the Miniature Sheet in particular, guidance was also sought from the Science Museum.

  • The full set of 10 stamps, available in a Presentation Pack, retails at £13.10. The stamps and a range of collectible products are available to pre-order from today (3 August) at www.royalmail.com/industrialrevolutions and go on general sale from 12 August.
3 Aug 2021