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1997 Machin Undenominated Trial Printings by Courvoisier SA of Switzerland - Set of 3
Machin definitives were first printed in lithography in 1980 as Royal Mail expanded its range of suppliers. However, by the mid-1990s it had decided that all the standard definitives should be printed in gravure. At the time The House of Questa, based in south London, did not have gravure capability.
So Royal Mail permitted Questa to approach Helio Courvoisier SA of Switzerland, probably with a view to subcontracting the gravure printing.
Read more about the discovery and story of these printings on our blog
The undenominated trials were undertaken on 20 October 1997 in sheets of 100 with the Courvoisier imprint along the vertical margins. They exist in three colours: deep green (as used for the 2p), light grey (as used at the time for the 29p), and flame (as used for 1st class). Courvoisier had been printing the then current Kenya definitives, and these trials are printed on the same coated paper, without phosphor bands, and have perforation 15 x 14 (although the stamp image is slightly smaller than that used on Machin definitives.
The stamps are printed in 10 rows of 10, with the imprint
PRINTED BY HELIO COURVOISIER S.A. LA CHAUX-DE-FONDS, SWITZERLAND
reading upwards in the side margins.
No marginal copies available