The results of the March Polar Postal History Auction of Spitsbergen postcards can be seen below!

  • Captain Bade Spitzbergen Franz Josef Land 1900
    Captain Bade Spitzbergen Franz Josef Land 1900 Sold for £84
  • Captain Bade Spitzbergen Franz Josef Land 1900
    Captain Bade Spitzbergen Franz Josef Land 1900 Sold for £84
  • Norddeutscher Lloyd Spitzbergen Polarfahrt 1910
    Norddeutscher Lloyd Spitzbergen Polarfahrt 1910 Sold for £41
  • Captain Bade Spitzbergen Spitsbergen Cruise 1902
    Captain Bade Spitzbergen Spitsbergen Cruise 1902 Sold for £37
  • Postcard Explorer Hjalmar Johansen Expedition 1908
    Postcard Explorer Hjalmar Johansen Expedition 1908 Sold for £171
  • Miners Ayer and Longyear Spitsbergen Svalbard 1905
    Miners Ayer and Longyear Spitsbergen Svalbard 1905 Sold for £68
  • Landing Jetty Advent Bay Spitsbergen Svalbard 1910
    Landing Jetty Advent Bay Spitsbergen Svalbard 1910 Sold for £10
  • Postcard Hunting Spidsbergen Spitsbergen Svalbard
    Postcard Hunting Spidsbergen Spitsbergen Svalbard Sold for £21
  • First Hotel and Post Office Spitzbergen 1900
    First Hotel and Post Office Spitzbergen 1900 Sold for £10
  • Advent Bay Spitzbergen Spitsbergen Svalbard 1908
    Advent Bay Spitzbergen Spitsbergen Svalbard 1908 Unsold
  • Mining Baths Green Harbour Spitzbergen 1913
    Mining Baths Green Harbour Spitzbergen 1913 Sold for £52
  • Miners Collecting Post Advent Bay Spitsbergen 1931
    Miners Collecting Post Advent Bay Spitsbergen 1931 Sold for £63.10
  • Postcard First Post Office Spitsbergen 1906
    Postcard First Post Office Spitsbergen 1906 Unsold
  • Postcard Mining Railway Longyear City Spitsbergen
    Postcard Mining Railway Longyear City Spitsbergen Sold for £11.50
  • Postcard Mining Equipment Longyearbyen 1925
    Postcard Mining Equipment Longyearbyen 1925 Sold for £10
  • SS Auguste Victoria Spitzbergen Polarfahrt 1899
    SS Auguste Victoria Spitzbergen Polarfahrt 1899 Sold for £17
  • SS Auguste Victoria Spitzbergen Polarfahrt 1899
    SS Auguste Victoria Spitzbergen Polarfahrt 1899 Sold for £17

Welcome to the website of the Polar Postal History Society of Great Britain (PPHSGB)

The society for collectors of Arctic and Antarctic Polar Postal History from around the World.

A warm welcome to the website of the Polar Postal History Society of Great Britain. The aims of the Society are to promote the study of postal history from the polar regions and to act as a meeting place where members can exchange information and learn more about their areas of interest. We welcome members from not just Great Britain but from all around the World!

We hope that you will browse the site and learn more about the Polar Postal History Society. You can find more information about the society and society events. The website features many fine examples of polar postal history from our member's collections from which you can learn from or just admire. You can read about our informative magazine Polar Post and get online access to every issue of the magazine since the society was founded in 1953! The latest polar news is available to read, auction information from both society auctions and auction houses can be viewed, and books purchased from our polar publications section. We provide links to other polar related websites that can help you with your collecting, and show you historical polar videos that we found interesting - if you would like your website to be added to our links please send us a message!

If you are interested in the Postal History of the Polar Regions, either North and South, please contact us for more information or better still fill out the application form and join our society. Please specify your range of interests on the application form, but whatever they are, you will be most welcome. Happy polar collecting!

Latest News

March PPHSGB Online Auction   6th April 2020

The latest online PPHSGB auction focused on postcards from the Arctic Island of Spitsbergen and finished on the 5th April. One highlight of this auction was a postcard sent from the Captain Bade tourist expedition to Spitzbergen and Franz Josef Land in 1900 - this achieved £84. Other highlights of the sale included three cards showing early mining that reached £68, £52 and £63.10 and a real photo card showing the Norwegian explorer Hjalmar Johansen during an overwintering expedition to Spitsbergen in 1908 - this achieved the excellent price of £171.

Thanks to all the bidders!

The next PPHSGB auction will take place towards the end of April and will focus on Whaling. More details to follow.

Captain Bade Spitzbergen Franz Josef Land 1900 Sold for £84
Captain Bade Spitzbergen Franz Josef Land 1900 Sold for £84
Postcard Explorer Hjalmar Johansen Expedition 1908 Sold for £171
Miners Ayer and Longyear Spitsbergen Svalbard 1905 Sold for £68
Advent Bay Svalbard Today

PPHSGB Annual General Meeting and Society Meeting  Cancelled  25th March 2020

The Secretary, Robert Hurst, announces that, in light of the cancellation of the London 2020 stamp exhibition and the cancellation of our booking at the Royal Philatelic Society due to the Coronavirus pandemic, the annual general meeting of the society is cancelled. Further details will follow when the situation becomes clearer. We wish the best of health to our members and their families at this time.

New Polar Post added to the Polar Library 18th February 2020

The March 2020 issue of Polar Post has been added to the Polar Library. Members can read articles on diverse polar subjects from the EcoNelson base to Adolf Erik Nordenskiöld, from the Mawson Station to Captain Scott. And details of new issues of polar stamps in full colour!

Is your favourite polar postal history subject featured? If not, write down some words, add some images and contact our editor who would be pleased to hear from you!

Polar Postal History Society featured in Stamp Collector  17th February 2020

The March 2020 issue of Stamp Collector features the Polar Postal History Society and an article on "How to Start a Polar Postal History Collection".

Read the full article in the PPHSGB in the News folder!

Stamp Collector gives you all the information, news, expert advice, market insight and inspiration you need to build your stamp collection and get the most from your hobby.

Every issue features in-depth collecting guides giving you the lowdown on classic stamp sets, new stamps, postal history, first day covers and much more. Our stamp stories shed light on intriguing stamps and why they were produced, and our stamp sidelines pages provide an insight into postmarks, first day covers, Cinderellas, Post & Go and Europa stamps.

Check it out at your local newsagent or subscribe here!

Amundsen Fram Expedition Member Jørgen Stubberud Sold for £172

January PPHSGB Online Auction  4th February 2020

The first online PPHSGB auction of the year finished on Sunday 2nd February with polar material being targeted at Antarctic collectors. The main interest was in a signed postcard by a member of the Roald Amundsen 1910-1912 Fram expedition which sold for £172. Covers from the Norwegian British Swedish expedition of 1949-1952 sold for £46 and £13 while several Antarctic postcards achieved good results .

Members can view all previous online auction in the PPHSGB auctions folder

Polar Post Article of the Month  January 2020

Sixty years ago this month in January 1960, the second part of the Volo Transpolare 1926 article from LH Harris was published in Polar Post. No man had ever succeeded in penetrating the vast region that lay between the North Pole and Alaska. Read more about the Norge airship expedition of 1926 in our latest "Article of the Month" feature!

Volo Transpolare.pdf

Membership Renewal  December 17th 2019

Members of the Society are reminded that they can renew their membership of the PPHSGB and pay their subscription feees for 20120 online by following the instructions on the Renew Your Membership page in the Members' Section on the website. Subscription fees are £20 for UK based members and £25 for overseas members.
New members can fill in the application form on the "How to Join" page and get immediate access to the online Polar Library containing all issues of the society journal "Polar Post" published since 1953, in addition to receiving paper copies through the post of the new issues as they are published.

December 2019 Polar Post added to the Polar Library  20th November 2019

The December issue of Polar Post has been added to the  Polar Library  - another excellent issue from our editor, John Youle. Curl up by the fire and enjoy reading!

November PPHSGB Online Auction  December 1st 2019

The final online PPHSGB auction of the year finished on December 1st. Due to the time of the year every item in this auction related to The North Pole in celebration of that great polar collector, Father Christmas. Of the 20 items in the auction 19 sold with the final sales total reaching £591. The rare registered cover sent from Roald Amundsen's Maud Expedition sold for £190, a postcard showing the Fram arriving back in Norway on the Second Fram Expedition in 1902 went for £51, a damaged but historically interesting cover from the Ziegler Polar expedition of 1903 reached £32.25 and a postcard showing the depot of the Andree Balloon expedition sold for £46.

All final prices can be seen in the PPHSGB auctions folder here

200 Years of Polar Exploration Exhibition Spink London November 19th to 24th 2019

The largest and most comprehensive exhibition of Polar exploration material ever staged opens at Spink in London on November 19th. Entitled 200 years of Polar Exploration, it will feature clothing equipment, medals and other memorabilia from Scott, Shackleton and all of the leading explorers, from the Franklin expedition to the modern day, including Henry Worsley, who tragically died during his final Antarctic expedition in 2016.
The unprecedented display at Spink, created in partnership with collectors as well as the Scott Polar Research Institute, marks the centenary of the end of the Heroic Age of Exploration, as Shackleton prepared for his final expedition. It will include many iconic pieces that have never been seen together before and will also give centre stage to the largely unsung hero of the great Antarctic expeditions of the early 20th century. Read more in the Polar Events section.

October PPHSGB Online Auction Finishes October 27th

The second online auction of the society finished on October 27th. The stationery from Scott's Discovery expedition sold for £260, a signed postcard from Fridtjof Nansen sold for £155 and several better Falkland Islands and British Antarctic Expedition covers found new homes! There were seventy six bids and eight winning bidders. The total value of the auction was £507.

Members of the society are invited to submit polar material for selling in future PPHSGB auctions. Please read more on the Members Section here!

Remember that the Polar Postal History Society receives 10% of the proceeds.

  • Captain Scott Discovery Antarctic Expedition 1901
    Captain Scott Discovery Antarctic Expedition 1901 Sold for £260
  • Captain Scott Discovery Antarctic Expedition 1901
    Captain Scott Discovery Antarctic Expedition 1901 Sold for £260
  • Captain Scott Discovery Antarctic Expedition 1901
    Captain Scott Discovery Antarctic Expedition 1901 Sold for £260
  • Captain Scott Discovery Antarctic Expedition 1901
    Captain Scott Discovery Antarctic Expedition 1901 Sold for £260
  • Fridtjof Nansen Signed Postcard 1907
    Fridtjof Nansen Signed Postcard 1907 Sold for £155
  • Fridtjof Nansen Signed Postcard 1907
    Fridtjof Nansen Signed Postcard 1907 Sold for £155
  • Fridtjof Nansen Signed Postcard 1907
    Fridtjof Nansen Signed Postcard 1907 Sold for £155
  • Falkland Dependency cover South Orkney set 1946
    Falkland Dependency cover South Orkney set 1946 Sold for £8.76
  • Falkland Dependency cover ships 1963 Otter Flight
    Falkland Dependency cover ships 1963 Otter Flight Sold for £5
  • British Antarctic Territory 1965 RRS SHACKLETON
    British Antarctic Territory 1965 RRS SHACKLETON Sold for £5
  • BAT 1970 ADELAIDE ISLAND SIGNED cover
    BAT 1970 ADELAIDE ISLAND SIGNED cover
  • Falkland Islands 1973 LINDBLAD EXPLORER
    Falkland Islands 1973 LINDBLAD EXPLORER
  • SHACKLETON HMS ENDURANCE ship SOUTH GEORGIA 1984
    SHACKLETON HMS ENDURANCE ship SOUTH GEORGIA 1984 Sold for £5
  • Falkland Dependency SOUTH GEORGIA 1984
    Falkland Dependency SOUTH GEORGIA 1984 Sold for £5
  • Falkland Dependency SOUTH GEORGIA 1984
    Falkland Dependency SOUTH GEORGIA 1984 Sold for £5
  • Fridtjof Nansen Crossing Greenland Postcard
    Fridtjof Nansen Crossing Greenland Postcard Sold for £40
  • Fridtjof Nansen Crossing Greenland Postcard
    Fridtjof Nansen Crossing Greenland Postcard Sold for £40

First PPHSGB Online Auction Completed 22nd September 2019

The first online auction finished today and the results showed strong demand for polar postal material. Of the ten items listed all sold. There were one hundred and four bids and eight winning bidders. The total value of the auction was £1149. Due to the popularity of this initial auction a new auction is planned for next month, provisionally starting on 17th October. More information to follow!

If any member of the society wishes to submit any polar material for selling in future PPHSGB auctions please read more on the Members Section here!

The first online auction from the Polar Postal History Society started on Thursday September 12th  and ended on Sunday September 22nd .

Postal History and philately from the Arctic and Antarctic from many polar collecting areas featured and the PPHSGB received get 10% of the net proceeds!

Postmarks and Cachets of The British Antarctic Bases and South Georgia 11th August 2019

John Youle has created an updated version of his excellent book on postmarks and cachets of these popular polar collecting areas. You can read the full version of the book in the members' polar library by clicking on this link

Results of the Colour Competition announced! 31st July 2019

Fifteen members submitted entries for the colour competition and the winning entry chosen by Steve Allen, the webmaster, and the editor, John Youle, is shown on the front cover of the September 2019 issue of Polar Post. The winning entry was submitted by our Australian member Peter Cranwell. Congratulations to Peter!

All entries can be viewed on the slideshow at the top of the competition page in the Members Section or downloaded from the pdf added below.

Thanks go to everyone who participated.

Colour Competition Entries.pdf

September 2019 Polar Post added to the Polar Library 31st July 2019

The September issue of Polar Post will be posted out to members shortly. To keep members cool if you are in the middle of a heatwave the latest issue has been added to the  Polar Library . Enjoy reading and keep cool!

MIDPEX 2019 PPHSGB and FIPSG stands 6th July 2019

The PPHSGB and the Falkland Islands Philatelic Study Group had stands at MIDPEX 2019 in the Warwickshire Event Centre, The Fosse, Fosse Way, near Leamington Spa, CV31 1XN on Saturday 6th July 2019 from 10:00 to 16:30. The event was run by the Midland Philatelic Federation and the Association of
British Philatelic Societies. It is sponsored by Cavendish Philatelic Auctions Ltd. Read a report in the Polar Events  section.

STOCKHOLMIA 2019 joint FIPSG and PPHSGB meeting 31st May 2019

The joint FIPSG and PPHSGB meeting took place during the Stockholmia 2019 exhibition, which was from 29 May to 2 June 2019 in central Stockholm. The exhibition celebrated the 150th anniversary of the Royal Philatelic Society of London. Find out what happened in the separate Stockholmia 2019 folder!

Stockholm-New York in 1929: an Interrupted Polar Flight  Saturday 1st June 2019 10:00

Serge Kahn gave an informative and well attended lecture Stockholmia entitled " Stockholm-New York in 1929: an Interrupted Polar Flight". If any member missed the lecture you can see the full presentation in the Stockholmia folder.

New to the Polar Library! Polar Philatelic Books, Polar Research and Polar News Articles Sections 11 May 2019

With the complete history of Polar Post magazines available in the Polar Library and more Polar Books added, three additional new sections have been created in the Polar Library:

  • A new section for Polar Philatelic Books has been added with initial content including three excellent books on Antarctic Polar Postal History from Mark Jurisich and several well researched and detailed articles from John Youle.
  • A section on Polar Research has been added. Papers and articles on polar history to give you background on covers or postcards that you are researching
  • And a section featuring Historical Newspaper Articles that show how the polar news was originally reported at the time. Sometimes events are described very differently than how history presents them today!
  • All the contents of these sections are presented in the results from the search function in the Polar Library. Just make a search on your chosen polar subject and check out the results

Discussion Board added to the Members Section!  3rd March 2019

A discussion board has been added to the Member's Section of the Website. Do you need to find out more information about a polar item in your collection? Do you have a cover that you want to feature? Post your question or item and start a discussion here!

Several discussions have already been started. Can you provide the answers!

Polar Postal History Society of GB Annual General Meeting & London Spring Meeting 16th February 2019
The Polar Postal History Society held its AGM at Spring Stampex on Saturday 16th February with a good number of members in attendance. Further details of the meeting will follow on the website and in Polar Post.

Gold Medal for "Operation Tabarin" publication at Spring Stampex 16th February 2019

It is with pleasure that we announce the award of a Gold medal to our president, Gerry Pearce, for his book "Operation Tabarin and its Postal History" in the Philatelic Literature class at Stampex. Well done Gerry!

The book looks at the Operation from the aspect of the political importance of the special stamps produced, and mail sent and received through the operation of Post Offices at the permanently occupied Antarctic bases.

The book is available to order in the Polar Publications section.

Membership renewal form 18th November 2018

To make it easier for UK and overseas members to renew their subscriptions an online membership renewal form has now been added to the website. Payment can be made electronically so you do not have to leave you house to renew your membership of your favourite polar society!

Addition of Polar Books to the Polar Library  18th November 2018  

To make the library more useful a new category has now been added – Polar Books - with copyright restrictions over, many polar books from the classic period of polar exploration have been uploaded to the Library and are available for all members to read. Find out what Antarctic Penguins really get up to, discover why Robert Falcon Scott lost out to Roald Amundsen or just read a polar literary masterpiece such as Apsley Cherry Garrard’s “The Worst Journey in the World”. You can read all these books and more online in the Polar Library or download to your PC or tablet and read later. More books will be continually added over the next few months so check back regularly to discover new polar reads.

Screenshot_2018-11-04 Aurora Australis  Ernest Shackleton  POLAR POSTAL HISTORY SOCIETY OF GREAT BRITAINjpg

Remember that to log-in to the Polar Library you just enter the e-mail address that you are registered with by the membership secretary, and password featured in the latest issue of Polar Post, into the Library log-in page accessible through the Members Section of the website.

19th – 21st October 2018  The Polar Postal History Society Cambridge Residential Weekend with the theme of "Americans in the Polar Regions" was enjoyed by all who attended. Some images of society members "in action" are shown below. Several of the displays featured Richard Byrd and some polar items from Byrd's expeditions to the Antarctic and Arctic are featured on the left. A full report of all member's displays appears in the December issue of Polar Post.

12th August 2018: Launch of the Online Polar Post  Library

The Polar Postal History Society is pleased to announce the launch of the online Polar Post   Library. The Polar Postal History Library includes all issues of Polar Post from 1953 with lists of contents (where available) – that is over 250 issues!
Members can go directly to the Polar Post  library here or click on one of the 250 Polar Post  front covers to go directly to a specific issue.

As an added bonus, after extensive work by the editor of Polar Post,John Youle, issues from March 2007 to date have been converted into colour (where colour exists in the original article), and these updated colour versions can also be viewed in the library.
Read more in the Polar Post section!