Postcrossing Blog

News, updates, and all kinds of goodies and stories from the postal world!

Posts tagged "guernsey"

After their stay in London, the Little Mail Carriers did a detour to the beautiful island of Guernsey, to have a rest from the hustle and bustle of the city. Denise (aka Tranchile) was their host for the stay, and had fun showing them around, despite the windy days that coincided with their visit.

Hello from Guernsey! 👋 We’re so glad to be here with our host Denise, who promised to give us the tour of the island where she lives. Shall we get started?

Little Chapel in Guernsey

One of highlights of Guernsey is this tiny chapel (appropriately called “Little Chapel”), built by Brother Déodat in July 1914. It is meant to be a miniature version of the grotto and basilica in Lourdes, France and is covered in pebbles, shells and broken colorful china. Now and then, volunteers repair the damage done by the weather over the years… Denise even remembers donating a broken cereal bowl of hers for repairs, when she was a child!

Cobo Beach

This is Cobo Beach, one of twenty eight beaches in Guernsey! There’s is a chip shop by the sea wall, and we saw some locals eating fish and chips from a bag there while watching the waves. Denise tells us that a film screen is put on the beach at low tide during summer, and the hotel opposite has a balcony and there is a big rocks concert played from there whilst people sit on the beach and listen to it… Sounds wonderful!

Looking at the Bailiwick's islands

We were hoping to visit one of the other Islands that come under the Bailiwick of Guernsey, but during our stay it was unusually windy and the ferries were cancelled. :( We had to hold onto each other whilst looking over the QE11 Marina at three of the islands instead.

From left to right, the first island is Herm, and you can just see the glorious sand there. It’s a quiet place with just one hotel, several cottages to rent and two camp sites. It also has a school for just about six children and the staff who work there. Jethou is the middle island, which is privately leased and not open to the public, and the bigger island on the right is Sark. It has no traffic, but if you are fit you can cycle around the island, or use horse and carts to go around at a more gentle pace.

Castle Cornet

Above you can see Castle Cornet, which was built in the 13th century, to defend the islands from the French. It’s been attacked and captured several times over the years, and finally returned to the islands in 1947 after reconstruction. Today it houses several museums and period gardens, and this half-term the schoolchildren have been dressed as Harry Potter characters and making spell books etc inside the main museum. How fun!

In the summer, a cannon is fired there at noon each day, which Denise tells us can be heard all over the island.

Guernsey's Number 1 Postbox

This is something we were looking forward to see: Guernsey’s Number 1 Postbox! It is the oldest working postbox in the British Isles and was put there by the Post Office Surveyor Anthony Trollope on 8th February 1853, as an experiment to see how well they would work for collecting mail. He had been impressed with the system of pillar boxes in France, and decided to test them on the Channel Islands. The experiment was so successful that they were later introduced in the UK.

Although the first postbox was red, all the modern ones are a lovely blue color.

Blue Guernsey postbox

The Market Square is a lively place in St. Peter Port, and it was there that we met 2 little friends, next to this curious statue… Can you guess why they made a statue of donkeys? It turns out that people from Guernsey are nicknamed “Guernsey Donkeys”, while those from nearby Jersey are known as “Crapauds” (or toads)!

Market Square and Donkey statues

Since we were just around the corner from it, Denise and our friends took us to see the Town Church, built in 1475. We looked up in awe at its beautiful stained glass windows and ornate pews, where the Liberation service is held every year on May 9th.

Town Church Town Church

Can you spot the gargoyle in the roof below? The white building next to it is a pub, and so this gargoyle is said to make this the closest church to a pub in the British Isles — it’s even in the Guinness, apparently! Maybe we’ll go in and grab something to eat before hopping back into our envelope…

Town Church gargoyle

See you later everyone… or, as they say around here, à la perchoine!

PS – Thank you Denise for showing the Little Mail Carriers around Guernsey! Where will they pop up next…? 🤔

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Hurray! The Guernsey Postcrossing stamp has just launched today and is now making its way around the world to many happy mailboxes!

Guernsey Post Postcrossing stamp! intro

In order to celebrate the event, postcrossers from the island and abroad got together today to send their first cards with the shiny new stamp. Guernsey Post kindly prepared a room for the eager postcrossers, who wrote and stamped to their heart’s content…

Guernsey Post Postcrossing stamp launch

… and ate the delicious cake a talented baker at the post office did for us! Isn’t it gorgeous?

Guernsey Post Postcrossing cake

The local newspaper and TV channel were also in attendance, and so we hope that a few islanders will find out about the project in the media tomorrow and decide to join!

Michael and the stamp

And here’s Michael (aka GIBSONMS) with the stamp! Michael was the enthusiastic postcrosser who approached Guernsey Post with the idea for a stamp.

Our big thank you to him for his initiative and to Dawn Gallienne at Guernsey Post, for deeming Postcrossing worthy of this honor. We really appreciate it!

It was a great day! Happy Postcrossing, everyone! :)


PS – If you’re interested, the stamp, postcard, and postcard+stamp+cancellation mark combos can be purchased online at the Guernsey Stamps website.

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Yes, you read that right! With the Queen’s royal approval, the tiny island of Guernsey will be the fourth country (or in this case, special territory) to launch its own Postcrossing stamp!

Why Guernsey, you might ask? Well, it’s all thanks to Michael (aka GIBSONMS)! One day, Michael decided to get in touch with a few postal services and make the case for a Postcrossing stamp as a way to spread the word about the project. He was really enthusiastic and persistent, and what do you know… it worked! :)

So ladies and gentlemen, we’re proud to announce that on May 28th, a new Postcrossing stamp will be born! Here’s what it will look like:

Guernsey Postcrossing Stamp!

Fun, right? It was designed by Guernsey Post’s marketing team, and it depicts an outline of the island of Guernsey with a smiley face, giving the thumbs up to Postcrossing! It will be available online on the Guernsey Stamps page from May 28th onwards, and also on the local post offices.

No matter how many Postcrossing stamps are born, it’s still a great honor for us to see them come to life. How many websites do you know that can boast this? :) So we’d like to give our heartfelt thank you to Dawn Gallienne at Guernsey Post for believing in the project – and especially to Michael, for his dedication!

By the way, we’re preparing a Postcrossing meeting in St. Peter Port, on the launch day, so that all postcrossers can come together and send postcards with the new stamp. It’ll take place on the main Post Office (Envoy House, La Vrangue) at 2pm – do get in touch on the forum, if you’re planning to attend. Everyone is welcome and we look forward to seeing you there! :)

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