Helvetia Philatelic Society

for stamps and postal history of Switzerland

Founded over 70 years ago, we pride ourselves on being a friendly and welcoming society for collectors and students of Swiss stamps and postal history. Our membership is located both in the UK and throughout the world. Beginners and experts alike are welcome to join and participate in our activities. To find out more, click here.

What’s New: Spring 2024

For those who like lake steamers don’t miss the issue to commemorate the 1824
steamboat The “Wilhelm” sailing between Romanshorn and the German town of Friedrichshafen.

Helvetia Society annual meeting

Annual meeting

The 2024 Annual Meeting will be held on 26 and 27 April at the Whitehouse Hotel, Worcester. This is the same venue as the very successful 2023 meeting. Some rooms have been reserved for Society members you need to book now to avoid disappointment. Bargains to be had at the Club Auction! Perhaps enter your material for one of the Club competitions or simply show non competitively in the members displays. Full details will be published in the newsletter, also further details can be obtained from secretary@swiss-philately.co.uk

Helvetia Society Zoom Meetings

If you are a member of our society and would like to participate in our zoom meetings and if have not received the email then please let me know at onlinemeet@swiss-philately.co.uk

Normally, I will send a link to the next meeting between 4-5 days ahead of the meeting and usually again the day before. If you have not received a link and wish to join then email me at onlinemeet@swiss-philately.co.uk and with a back up to webmaster@swiss-philately.co.uk or direct to my email if you have it in your system. There have been some problems with people not receiving links. Our next zoom meeting will be Thursday May 16th and I will send out the link on or about Monday 13th so if you have not received a link by Wednesday 15th May then please email me as above.

Our zoom meetings are an opportunity to show your prized material but also an opportunity to pick the brains of Society experts. Here is an example.
This card was shown by one of our members with the question what is an Italian Domodossala mark doing on an envelope from a company in Biel addressed back to the same company.

After some discussion the following explanation was given. The firm in Biel was exporting goods to Italy by rail and when the goods passed the customs post in Domodossala the waybill was signed as having passed the customs and put in an already franked envelope and put on the train going back.

Have you little mysteries in your collection if so join a zoom meeting and maybe get an answer.

Helvetia News Letter

After the retiral of the Helvetia News Letter Editor Richard Dornithorn the news letter is now being produced by an editorial panel. If you would like to contribute to the newsletter please let the editorial panel know:  librarian@swiss-philately.co.uk.

Our new members only page will open on the website soon and on the members page are all the newsletters to date. See below under whats new on the website

Upcoming National and International meetings

News of these and other meetings can be seen with more details on the Association of British Philatelic Societies website www.abps.org.uk

EUROPHILEX 2025, Birmingham (7-11 May) International Exhibition with FEPA (The Federation of European Philatelic Associations) Patronage and with FIP (Fédération Internationale de Philatélie) recognition of all classes. 2,000 frames will be on show. Further details, www.europhilex2025.co.uk : Entry deadline: 8 May 2024

PHILATELIC CONGRESS OF GREAT BRITAIN .The next Congress will be in Southampton from 11th to 14th July 2024. It will be based at the Leonardo Grand Harbour Hotel, close to the harbour and city centre. Free parking is available for visitors.

Stafford Stamp Show June 14-15 Staffordshire County Showground Ingestre Suite, Weston Road, Stafford, West Midlands, United Kingdom National Event around 50 national dealers attending. Stamps, Postal History, Covers etc.

Bernaba 2025 14-17 May

Look out for Varieties !

This is a regular feature and we are fortunate that our member Werner Gattiker – wernergattiker@outlook.com has agreed to help us find items we may have not have spotted. His contributions focus on plate varieties you may be able to find unspotted in dealers stockbooks! So arm yourself with a good magnifying glass (Werner recommends small x8 or x10 magnifiers). Happy hunting!

5. The 1938 San Salvatore Double-Print
Zumstein 215y.2.01
S.B.K. 215y DP
S.G. unlisted

This is not really a double-print, but a mis-placed re-entry covering the whole stamp area. It occurs on stamp 21 of sheet no.1, i.e. the first stamp in the 3rd row of the sheet. For some reason it was felt that the original field 21 was either too weakly engraved or in some way faulty, which is why the plate-makers attempted to correct the weakness by re-engraving field 21 on the printing cylinder. We would not be able to notice an accurately placed re-engraving, but in this case the rocker die was applied misplaced by a fraction of a millimetre sideways. This had the effect that all vertical lines appear doubled, which in turn makes the stamp look markedly darker.

This more intensely coloured stamp stood out from the other 49 in the sheet and so it is not surprising that it was spotted very quickly by eagle-eyed collectors and sheets with the variety were bought up quickly. The result is that this variety is not too expensive mint, but as obviously most of the hoarded stamps were kept in mint condition, the stamp is much harder to find in used condition and especially on cover, and I suspect very few actually were used in the normal course of sending mail. The variety only occurs on ordinary paper with smooth gum, not on grilled gum paper.
Current catalogue prices are: Zumstein CHF 120 (unmounted mint), CHF 450 (used), CHF 925 (cover); S.B.K. CHF 200 (unmounted mint), CHF 600 (used) and CHF 1,200 (on cover).

What’s new on our website.

Our members only page has all the newsletter including the most recent one and these can be downloaded and printed if desired. Members will be notified of the password . There is the possibility of having additional members only material in our members only pages and if you have ideas about what would be good to include please let me or any member of the committee know.

Helvetia Society Subscriptions 2024

The Membership Subscription is only 10 Pounds – for this you will receive electronic copies of the Helvetia News Letter, a password to our members page on the website, the right to participate in Society physical and online meetings and you can participate in the Society exchange packet. If you wish to receive posted copies of the Helvetia Society Newsletter the subscription rates are as follows £22 p.a. for Great Britain, £26 p.a. for Europe, £30 p.a. for Rest of the World. We welcome membership from anyone anywhere in the world who is interested in Swiss Philately. There is an application from you can download if you click the Join us tab.

Our Website – Please, please  

Let me know how I can improve our website. I will be especially grateful for any notification of any errors or difficulties you encounter. Tim Hargreave webmaster@swiss-philately.co.uk 

Are you interested in Swiss stamps and postal history?

Why not join our Society, and enjoy all the benefits that membership offers.

To find out more please contact the Secretary on

01905 423091


Click on the thumbnails below to find out more about early Swiss stamps.

Are you interested in Swiss stamps and postal history?

Membership of our Society has many benefits including a newsletter, regional and national meetings, a superb lending library etc.

To find out more please contact the Secretary on

01905 423091