|Like the postage dues, one could study these as a subject in their own right. There were many overprintings, and anybody looking for in depth guidance should refer to the Union Handbook. However, for a more simplified listing, I recommend the Stanley Gibbons Part I listing as this covers the major differences and is easy to follow. There are one or two omissions, principally on the ½d with frame only screened and fully screened designs, but this is only a minor problem and most collectors would easily identify these stamps.|
The mint collector should find the job of collecting officials a lot easier than the used collector. The official stamps could be purchased at the larger post offices, so cylinder and arrow blocks can be found in collections, as well as the varieties already known from the unoverprinted stamps. The used stamps can be difficult, especially the high values. KGVI collectors are always on the look out for both of the small format 2d stamps with the overprints reading upwards (SG O35 & O45a). The 1950 2d with the smaller overprint has a space in the Stanley Gibbons George VI album and is one of the hardest stamps to find for this album!
The use of Official stamps ended in 1955, hence they fall neatly in the Union period.