View se-tenant strip

Christmas 2000

       22 November 2000             20, 80, $1.50, $3.00 se-tenant strip.          Mint and CTO se-ten.      $5.50
                                                                                                                    FDC                                $6.50 

 Technical Details

Release Date :  22 November 2000
Denominations :  20c, 80c, $1.50 and $3.00
Stamp Design : Karen Odiam, Wellington, NZ
Printer : Southern Colour Print
Process : Offset Lithography
Paper : 103gsm non-phosphor stamp paper
Stamp Size : 37.5mm x 41.00mm
Perforation Gauge : 14 x 2 cm
Format : Se-tenant strip of four stamps
Sheet    :  Panes of 20 stamps
First Day Cover  :  $6.50

Designer Karen Odiam, in this her first stamp issue design for Pitcairn, has cleverly placed each illustration within the outline of a bell and linked each stamp of the se-tenant strip with blue, red, purple and green ribbons.

In accordance with a UK Foreign Office requirement, we are not permitted to feature the likeness of a living person on our stamps so despite the realistic appearance of those featured on this issue, there is only one face which belongs to a Pitcairner.  The elderly gentleman ringing the bell on the 80c stamp, is none other than the late Andrew Young, who passed away in 1988.  Andrew was Pitcairn’s first amateur radio operator and served many years as the Island Secretary.

Preparing for Christmas on Pitcairn is quite unlike other places.  This year, Pitcairn’s Christmas supply ship, America Star, will be leaving New Zealand on 15 November, which means that everyone will need to have completed their Christmas shopping before then.  Many Pitcairners will have their New Zealand relatives searching for items to send to the island.  Consideration needs to be given to visitors who may or may not arrive for Christmas.  Frequently however, Christmas gifts can be produce from the garden, a woven Pitcairn basket or a carving.

The Christmas Eve activity of ‘Santa Clausing’ is illustrated on the 20c stamp.  After dark on Christmas Eve, groups and couples will wander from house to house leaving gifts for the children in the baskets hanging outside in much the same manner as people may fill stockings with gifts in other countries.

Christmas Day is a day of community celebration.  From the gathering of Christmas trees on Christmas day morning, the standing and decorating of these with gifts for everyone in the Square, through to the giving of the gifts in the afternoon, the day is one long community occasion.

Usually everyone takes their gifts home before opening them and trying to guess who may have given them.  Later families and friends may gather to share a meal with one another.