Page last updated at 00:11 GMT, Thursday, 18 September 2008 01:11 UK

RAF uniforms celebrated in stamps

RAF stamp showing 1951 Hawker Hunter pilot
A Hawker Hunter pilot from 1951 features in one of the first class stamps

Six stamps celebrating the history of Royal Air Force uniforms from the past 90 years are going on sale.

The three first-class and three 81p airmail stamps feature service personnel in uniform from significant periods of the RAF.

A helicopter winchman from 1984 and a plotter in the Women's Auxiliary Air Force in 1940 feature in the designs.

Stamps featuring British army uniforms were issued last year and a Royal Navy series will be out in 2009.

Julietta Edgar, Royal Mail's head of special stamps, said: "The stamps are a striking collection which celebrate and chart the history of RAF uniforms.

"The uniforms combine practicality with instant recognition across the military forces, worldwide for the RAF.

RAF search and rescue winchman holds 81 pence stamp showing crew member from 1984
A current winchman with the design showing a rescue crewman from 1984

"The issue coincides with the service's 90th anniversary and celebrates the many aspects of the RAF."

The ceremonial wear of a drum major from the RAF Central Band in 2007 is most recent uniform in the series and is on one of the first-class stamps.

The other first class stamps show the helicopter rescue winchman in a protective and highly visible orange immersion suit and a Hawker Hunter Pilot from 1951.

The 81p stamps feature a pilot in a leather coat, flying hat and goggles from 1918, the first year of the RAF and the electrically-heated Taylor Buoyancy Suit worn by Lancaster Air Gunners in 1944.

In pictures: British army stamps
20 Sep 07 |  In Pictures

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