Northern Ireland

Royal Mail launches Giant's Causeway centre stamp

stamp featuring Giant's causeway visitor's centre Image copyright Royal Mail
Image caption Postman Jeffrey Stirling from Portrush office who has worked for Royal Mail for nearly 20 years with the stamp

The Giant's Causeway Visitor Centre has been featured in a new stamp collection launched by Royal Mail on Friday.

The photo used was taken by amateur photographer Mark McCall from Lisburn, who said he was "delighted" his image was used.

The set celebrates 10 buildings that represent the "renaissance of contemporary architecture" in the UK.

The £18.5m visitor centre opened in 2012 and was inspired by the Causeway's 40,000 hexagonal basalt stones.

In 1986, Unesco declared the Giant's Causeway to be a World Heritage Site.

Image copyright Mark McCall
Image caption The original image which Royal Mail contacted Mark about

Mr McCall told BBC's Evening Extra programme he had taken the photo in 2013 when he was out for a walk on the north coast.

"I was annoying my better half by dropping down every five minutes to take pictures," he said.

"I nearly didn't take that picture as but as I passed by it the shadows were long and the sky was clear and I had to run back to take one last shot.

"I posted the pictures online and last summer I found an email in my spam folder, asking me if I would be interested in allowing it to be used it for a stamp.

"Its an amazing piece of architecture - there's just something about that building that I always come back to - it's the shape, how it reflects the stones of the Causeway.

"When I look back at my favourite photos they are always the ones with strong lines so I think that's what attracted me to it."


Image copyright Mark McCall
Image caption "In a hundred years time when I'm not here, someone might have my photo in their stamp collection. That'll be my bit of immortality," said Mark

Royal Mail told Mark they had looked at a few images of the building but kept coming back to his. Last November they told him his picture would be used but he has had to keep it a secret until now.

"I am delighted and I'm so glad to be representing this wee land," he added.

"In a hundred years time when I'm not here, someone might have my picture in their stamp collection. That'll be my bit of immortality".

The past two decades has seen a surge in the construction of new public buildings in the UK.

Royal Mail said the images used "capture the distinctive lines and shapes of the structures that have become famous landmarks renowned across the world".

Image copyright Mark McCall

The special stamp set also features:

  • London Aquatics Centre
  • Library of Birmingham
  • The Scottish Parliament, Edinburgh
  • The SEC Armadillo, Glasgow
  • National Assembly for Wales, Cardiff
  • Eden Project, St Austell
  • The Everyman Theatre, Liverpool
  • The IWM North, Manchester
  • The Blavatnik Building - formerly Switch House, Tate Modern, London.

Philip Parker, Stamp Strategy Manager, Royal Mail, said: "These new stamps celebrate visionary buildings which combine stunning architecture with great engineering."

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