Officially opened on 20 January 1957, Scott Base is New Zealand’s permanent research support station in Antarctica. It was originally designed to last just a year or two, but its enormous value as a centre for scientific research has seen it grow and flourish.
It may be many thousands of kilometres from our shores, but for the past 50 years Antarctica has been ‘home’ to hundreds of New Zealanders. Living and working at Scott Base, these hardy souls have made a magnificent contribution to our understanding of the continent, as have the many visitors who’ve become ambassadors for Antarctica’s environmental protection and preservation.
The idea of building a New Zealand base in Antarctica was first suggested in 1953, following the announcement of the International Geophysical Year Programme and the British plan to cross the Antarctic continent.
New Zealand became officially involved in 1955 when Prime Minister Sidney Holland announced that the government would support New Zealand’s involvement in the Trans-Antarctic Expedition.
Officially opened on 20 January 1957, Scott Base is New Zealand’s permanent research support station in Antarctica. It was originally designed to last just a year or two, but its enormous value as a centre for scientific research has seen it grow and flourish. Today, the Base can accommodate up to 85 people, and during each Antarctic season (from October to February) nearly 400 representatives of New Zealand and international research institutes and other agencies pass through.
Miniature Sheets and Miniature Sheet First Day Cover
The five miniature sheets and miniature sheet first day covers featured the full photos of what is depicted on each stamp and provided even more detail of the different stages that Scott Base has progressed through from 1957 to now.
Available in only limited quantities – just 2,000 worldwide – this prestigious and unique, individually numbered and authenticated collectable was a treasure to behold. In this limited edition you learned about the fascinating world of Scott Base, New Zealand’s place in Antarctica, the famous expeditions to the continent, the TAE and IGY and the enormous challenges facing those who constructed the first buildings, and the opening ceremony by Sir Edmund Hillary himself. You also read about how far the Base has come in the past 50 years – so that today “all who have enjoyed time at Scott Base long to return”.
Each limited edition contained a first day cover that had been certified as mail posted from Scott Base on 20 January 2007. The first day cover was personally signed by Lou Sanson, CEO, Antarctica New Zealand. The limited edition also contained five miniature sheets with a gold foiled 50th Anniversary official logo, colour separations of the $2 stamp and plate blocks from all five stamp sheets.
Unique First Day Covers Signed by Sir Edmund Hilary
To celebrate this very special occasion for Scott Base and for New Zealand, New Zealand Post offered the chance to win a very special first day cover, signed by Sir Edmund Hilary and certified as mail posted from Scott Base on 20 January 2007 - the anniversary date.
If your presentation pack that you purchased from this issue contained a gold voucher, you received one of these 100 unique first day covers.
Take a look at the commemorative coins that were also part of this issue. Click here to find out more.
Product Listing for 50th Anniversary of Scott Base 1957 - 2007
Click on image to enlarge.
|Date of issue:||20 January 2007|
|Number of stamps:||Five gummed stamps|
|Denominations and designs:||45c, 90c, $1.35, $1.50, $2.00|
|Stamps and first day cover designed by:||Alan Hollows, Stamps Business, New Zealand Post, Wellington|
|Printer and process:||Southern Colour Print, New Zealand by offset lithography|
|Number of colours:||Four process colours|
|Stamp size and format:||45.14mm x 30mm (horizontal)|
|Paper type:||Tullis Russell 104gsm red phosphor gummed stamp paper|
|Number of stamps per sheet:||25|
|Special blocks:||Plate/imprint blocks could be obtained by purchasing at least six stamps from a sheet. Barcode blocks were available in both A and B formats.|
|Period of sale:||These stamps remained on sale until 19 January 2008.|