UK diaspora group seeks to reconnect Guyanese with world’s rarest stamp

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An eclectic mix of the United Kingdom (UK) Diaspora and friends of Guyana gathered at the Stanley Gibbons Centre in London. The event, hosted by Sally Gibson, the Guyanese born UK-based lawyer, was a private reception to exhibit The Guiana One Cent Magenta.

The stamp was recently purchased by Stanley Gibbons for G$1.7 billion and is the rarest Stamp in the world.

The event, included notable persons from public life, business, artists, authors, sports and community leaders. A former High Commissioner to Guyana and a representative of the former High Commissioner to the UK were also in attendance.

The indomitable John Agard, world renowned Guyanese Poet, also invoked the spirit of Guyana and the love for the homeland in a Reading he gave of a poem dedicated to his mother

Sally Gibson at the event

Sally also hosted President Irfaan Ali last week on his way back from COP26 for a private viewing. Special arrangements were made for the One Cent Magenta to be removed from its display cabinet and the President was able to handle it at close quarters. He was also able to share the history of the Stamp’s printing press which remains intact in the Museum in Georgetown.

The Magenta stamp

Speaking of her inspiration to organise the events, Sally spoke of her desire to reconnect Guyana and the Diaspora with the Stamp given that it is so deeply engrained in the collective Guyanese psyche. She was pleased that so many connections, old and new, had been made because of the Stamp.

The Great great-great granddaughter and great-great-great grandson of Edmond D. Wight, the Postmaster’s Clerk whose famous initials “EDW” appears on the One cent Magenta, were also invited.

Though they had never before met, they were uniquely brought together by the evening’s viewing. Sally was also delighted that the President’s visit made a modern Guyanese connection with the Stamp’s new home. In passing, it was also noted that he and Sally were connected through a common family ancestry!

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