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Historic Royal Mail Stamp Prices 1971 – 2019

By Chris Dawson March 25, 2019 - 12:42 pm

With the Royal Mail 2019 Stamp Prices kicking in today, we thought it would be interesting to take a look at the Historic Royal Mail Stamp Prices. To keep things simple, we’ve listed stamp prices from the time of decimalisation in 1971 through to the present day.

For those who are interested, prior to decimalisation the cost of a 1st Class stamp was 5d in the days of LSD (Pounds, Shillings and Pence).

In 1971, the cost of a 1st Class stamp was 3p and a 2nd Class stamp would set you back 2.5p (yes we still had half pence coins up until December 1984).

Today’s 3p price rise is mid-range at 4.48%, the highest ever increase in the cost of a stamp was in 1975 when the cost of a 1st Class stamp jumped 55.56% from 4.5p to 7p and the cost of a 2nd Class stamp rose 57.14% from 3.5p to 5.5p.

The price rise today is also the highest since 2012 (30.43% rise for 1st Class and 38.89% for 2nd Class) and follows 3 years (2015-2017) of 1p rises and a 2p rise in 2018.

In 2012 Ofcom set the 2nd Class stamp price cap at 55p which would increase in line with the Consumer Prices Index (CPI) so today that means the cap is set at 60.65p. From the 1st April 2019, Ofcom have set the cap at 5% in real terms, to 65p for the period 1st of April 2019 to 31st of March 2020. The precise upper limit of the cap will be set at 65.2p from April 2019 (increasing it by CPI each year) but is quoted as 65p as Royal Mail increments stamp prices in whole pennies.

Royal Mail are in breach of the price cap from today until the 1st of April and will donate approximately £60,000 to the Action for Children charity to make amends.

Historic Royal Mail Stamp Prices (in pence) 1971 – 2019

Year

1st
Class

2nd
Class

Year

1st
Class

2nd
Class

Year

1st
Class

2nd
Class

1971
1972
1973
1974
1975
1976
1977
1978
1979
1980
1981
1982
1983
1984
1985
1986
 
3
3
3.5
4.5
7
8.5
9
9
10
12
14
15.5
16
17
17
18
 
2.5
2.5
3
3.5
5.5
6.5
7
7
8
10
11.5
12.5
12.5
13
12
13
 
1987
1988
1989
1990
1991
1992
1993
1994
1995
1996
1997
1998
1999
2000
2001
2002
 
18
19
20
22
24
24
25
25
25
26
26
26
26
27
27
27
 
13
14
15
17
18
18
19
19
19
20
20
20
19
19
19
19
 
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008
2009
2010
2011
2012
2013
2014
2015
2016
2017
2018
2019
28
28
30
32
34
36
39
41
46
60
60
62
63
64
65
67
70
20
21
21
23
24
27
30
32
36
50
50
53
54
55
56
58
61

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