In 1840 a new way of delivering letters came into operation. For 1d you bought a small black square of paper (the famous Penny Black!), stuck it on to your envelope and your letter was delivered for you. Little did those trying the service on the 'First Day' know that 175 years later others would be doing the same thing each time a new stamp was issued. And that those envelopes dated 6th May 1840 would sell for over £20,000!

The first in First Day Covers

As the leading independent producer of First Day Covers, we have been in operation for over 50 years and our philosophy is simple - to produce the most beautiful covers in the world, a joy to collect as time goes by. When we design our own covers, we go to enormous lengths to create ones you will be proud to own and display.

We capture the theme of the stamp issue and print specially produced labels which are attached to the covers and frame them with gold-blocked borders. We sponsor our own special Royal Mail postmarks to add even greater appeal. When finished, each one presents a total picture linking the stamps, postmarks and cover designs to create a miniature work of art.

Why a special postmark?

When you receive a letter through the post, the postmark is simply intended to show you where and when it was posted.

With a Benham First Day Cover, we take this a little further. For each cover, we find a place connected with the person, event or subject featured on the stamps and create a pictorial postmark. The date featured is the date of the first day the stamps are available.

Most of our covers are produced in exceptionally low limited editions, many are signed by people closely linked to the the theme of the stamps and covers and some encapsulate coins or medallions to enhance their collectibility.

Other Benham services

Benham offers an unrivalled service supplying mint new issues from around the world.  Whether you collect by country or theme we can assist you.  From Australia to Zambia, from Aircraft to World Wars and everything in between.

To view an impressive array of other collectables such as autographs, silver, china, books and many more fascinating items visit our sister company at