Royal Mail reveals Christmas stamps for 2016

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They may be up there with turkey, eggnog and Slade as a seasonal tradition - every year the Royal Mail issues a set of festive stamps to brighten up the envelopes containing your Christmas cards (or final demands).

And this year the six stamps celebrate some of the best-loved traditions of a UK Christmas - decorating the tree, making a snowman, eating a Christmas pudding, hanging out a stocking, and lighting a Christmas lantern.

And also included is a robin redbreast - a long-held tradition, originally inspired by the red coats worn by postmen in Victorian times when postmen were known as ‘red breasts’

The images on the stamps were crafted by Manchester-based, illustrator, Helen Musselwhite. Helen created intricate paper sculptures which were then photographed. She cut the paper by hand and folded the pieces to build the detailed and multi-layered festive scenes.

Royal Mail’s Christmas stamps feature secular and religious imagery in alternate years - Madonna and Child 1st and 2nd Class stamps are available from Post Offices.

The festive stamps are on sale now, available at www.royalmail.com/christmas2016, by phone on 03457 641 641 and in 7,000 Post Offices across the UK