11 May 2019 A Philatelic Pilgrimage 2: (Homecoming) Return to Penang

11 May 2019 A Philatelic Pilgrimage 2: (Homecoming) Return to Penang

10 May 2019:

Here is the situation:

1. Date of sale moved to 11 May 2019.

2. Half a day for the pilgrimage.

This presented a new challenge of half day. How do we plan out the logistics? Where do we start?

We need help!

Let’s Assemble the old team.

Conference calls time! Frantic Friday calls to various parties. Are we good to go?

11 May 2019:

05:00 am – Thermos – check, Air Sandwich – check, lots of drinking water – check, petrol tank – full! , Touch & Go – check, vehicle – check.

06:00 am – Load up! Good to go! Beep: incoming message, Southern Team nearing rendezvous point.

The drive was dark. Traffic was light. It felt like 21 November 2016 again! We will end up in Pitt Street, Penang again!

Ah finally here!

Rendezvous complete!

It was a quick stop – chop – go!

Why not visit the temple since we are here?

Hasty discussion ensued with the locals in the post office, Waze and Google Map. Where is the temple? I might as well toss a coin…. In myfdc I trust, let’s go!

The road led into off road plantation area. Once we alighted the architecture is awesome!

Beep… message from Central Team… designer is Mr Gan.

Time to leave to the next point: Reverand R.S. Hutchings’ legacy. He left behind 3. Can you name them?

11:00 am – Penang GPO was packed. All waiting to chop – chop – chop!

Better go to Plan B.

A quick drive around the corner to my secret spot where usually there is a spot or two put me within the middle of both location. Ooops… no more stock of the “scratch and win” parking coupons. A good samaritan sold me enough for an hour! I wish we have an easier parking method, e.g. the “slot machines” that eat up your coins. It will be easier than carrying a stack of cards and sometimes only to be used once in a while in the now famous philatelic tours!

11:30 am – Picked up the items from St George’s Heritage Centre

The Heritage Centre sold a set of concordant postcards which were very quickly sold out. I hope there are more stocks. In fact the cinderella was taken from an old print of the church.

Thanks Helenn! I really appreciate the assistance!

With the official private folders and covers in hand, it was a brisk walk back to the Penang General Post Office for the final touches! Enroute, stop at 7-11 for more “scratch and win” parking coupons! I really think they are “scratch or fine”!

12:30 pm – done stage 1!

Here is a comparison of the St George’s Souvenir Cover and mine (using the Pos Malaysia Cover) with the concordant Pulau Pinang cancellation (chop). Sure wished the St George’s Folder set was cancelled using the Pulau Pinang cancellation to be more meaningful (similar to the Penang Free School Bicentenary Folder set).

The St George’s folder set also includes a full sheet of St George’s stamps (with many saying it is a different shade, I think so too if you look at the above photos of the 80 sen stamp!), a mint cinderella and another Souvenir Cover with a single stamp.

It is time to take a break and head to the next stage! Beep…in coming message from someone who guided me a lot from the Central Team …. “the stamps have 1/5, 2/5, 3/5, 4/5, 5/5″…. really? I was pasting according to the Price List and e-Poster! Now this is a great move as I know know we have 5 stamps in a set and I will not stick the wrong stamp. As to the order… hmm… I might not be able to follow everytime in order to be concordant!

I heard in many post offices will be still selling and cancelling on Monday. You can check it out. Certainly your second chance to get things done! Penangites might want to visit the St George’s Heritage Centre: stgeopg@yahoo.com (or buy in person).

Many thanks to various logistics team.

04:30 pm – first drop off for Stage 2.

06:30 pm – second drop off for Stage 2.

Concordanists Assemble!


ps: Philatelic Pilgrimage 1 can be relieved at: https://myfdc.me/2016/11/22/21-november-2016-a-philatelic-pilgrimage/


Advance Son’s of Hutchings

Advance Son’s of Hutchings


There is a small lane, Argus Lane that connects a little known school today to the opposite of where the Penang Philatelic Society’s Exhibition is held in the old Star Building along Pitt Street.


On 01 January 1928, one of the oldest Primary School in Penang was founded, when the Penang Free School moved out from their building in Farquhar Street to Green Lane where Penang Free School still stands. The reason was that since Penang Free School had moved out, the building was then used as a primary school. The school was named after Reverand R. S. Hutchings (the founder of Penang Free School). It was a notable feeder school to Penang Free School. The school headmasters and teaching staff ensured a feel of “Penang Free School” atmosphere for the younger children. So much so, the school has a marching song as the school anthem.

The “old” Hutchings School is the current Penang State Library. The school has since moved to the back and set up a high school.



What has this got to do with the exhibition? The cover printed for the exhibition shows the old Penang Free School building. This is the building that was turned into Hutchings School when Penang Free School move to the current location in Green Lane.

Back to our topic, 22 October was the official launch date of the Penang Philatelic Society’s exhibition by Y. B. The Lai Heng. There is an exhibiton cachet at the exhibition hall. The only way to do postmarking would be to buy the society’s exhibition envelopes and affix with the Penang Free School Bicentenary stamps / Miniature Sheet. The society’s envelope features Dr. Wu Lien Teh as well as the Penang Free School (2nd location) / Huchings School (1st location) / Penang State Museum.


The dealers were up early to put up their goods. There were a good mix of stamps and coins. Here are the photos of the sales area.




You might want to join in the auction on 23 October 2016 at 02:00 pm for registered members.



As many old guards fade away, the Hutchings School anthem will go as well. Little is known of the song’s writer. Those who still remember the march, it goes like this:


Rally round the School, boys

Rally round, Rally round

Rally round the School, boys

Rally round the School




Standing in the air of glory

Glowing in the sun

Shining bright as every

With the good she’s done….


Advance Son’s of Hutchings

Hurrah for the School

We’ll do our very best

Our love will never cool


Ends with the Chorus


Let Us Onwards to Win: Bicentenary of Penang Free School

Let Us Onwards to Win: Bicentenary of Penang Free School

“And New Laurels Gained.”

The day is here. As crowds queued in the Penang General Post Office, the award recipients are already packed in the hall awaiting the arrival of the VVIPs and VIPs. The earliest came at around 06:00 am.

Here is the crowd. The folder was sold out!

Next was the Penang Free School. The queues to buy and cancel were long and winding. Here is the sales area.

There was a surprise set of 10 postcards for sale! The postcards were sold by Pos Malaysia. The ready made Setemku was also irresistable for me.

Here is the cancellation station.

The response was very high for this issue. It is expected. Penangites by and large are proud of their heritage more so in education. 50 years is a long time to wait since the 1966 issue.
The Pos on Wheels vehicle from Penang had some problem and a vehicle was brought in from Sungai Petani! This is one of a kind!

Here is the Pos on Wheels vehicle.

There is actually a post box set up behind the vehicle for posting! I did not see anyone do any posting.


Pos Malaysia stayed on until late evening, way after 06:30 pm to support the sales to the old boys streaming in for the Bicentenary Dinner.

Dato’ Mohd Shukrie, Group CEO was very obliging to autograph for the many fans.

The balance of the Penang Free School Bicentenary Postcards were sold in the souvenir area at the school field.



Thank you Pos Malaysia for making this a big philatelic success!

A special thanks to the Group CEO who was there all the time as well as the staff from across the north and from the Philatelic Bureau HQ.

“Free School For the Brave and For the True.”

This concludes my coverage of one of the hottest stamp issue of the year!

Watch out….another school is coming next year!


Let Us March On To Fame: The Road Home

Let Us March On To Fame: The Road Home

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Let Us March on To Fame: Next Issue 21 October 2016 Penang Free School Bicentenary

Let Us March on To Fame: Next Issue 21 October 2016 Penang Free School Bicentenary

Well, you already know the images (https://myfdc.me/2016/09/08/strong-and-faithful/), so I guess the price list of all the available products will be useful. A mobile post office (Post on Wheels) will be sent to the school to sell and postmark the First Day Covers, very much like 50 years ago! SODA holders, watch out for a surprise (unless there is a change…).


The products will be sold in all states on 21 October 2016 except Kedah, Kelantan, Terengganu and Johor. The products will be sold in Kedah, Kelantan, Terengganu and Johor on 23 October 2016 (Sunday). Penang will be flooded by folks from Kedah on 21 October 2016 since Friday is a holiday for Kedahans.

Coincidentally there is a Stamp and Exhibition Fair organised by the Penang Philatelic Society in the old Star Building along Pitt Street: https://www.facebook.com/TheStarPittStreet/

This is not an official event of the school’s celebration. However, the society will be issuing an exhibition cover featuring Dr Wu Lien Teh (http://wulientehsociety.org/), the famous plague fighter and an Old Free, and an image of the second location of the Penang Free School. It will make a good match for the issue.

Do you know where is the second location of the Penang Free School?

The fair runs from 21 – 23 October 2016 from 9:00 am to 06:00 pm.

Right, I guess many Old Frees will be heading “home”. Have a safe journey.


“Let the Aisle Proclaim!”