Canada Post is sticking with Prince George.
The national postal service made a surprise announcement Thursday that it is issuing a commemorative stamp in honour of the birth of Prince George to royal parents William and Kate, Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.
Then Canada Post added even more pomp to the circumstances by giving Prince George an official seal of approval in the matter.
"Your city is the official cancellation site, which is especially important to collectors of stamps and to fans of the royal family," said Anick Losier, spokeswoman for Canada Post. Prince George the city will have the privilege of stamping all void stamps of that series. "I'm sure there will be people who buy the limited edition stamp, and you will even have people who want to mail letters to the royal family with the stamp and the Prince George postmark."
Canada Post launched the news by first calling mayor Shari Green to tell her the news.
"Thanks Canada Post," Green said, once it was disclosed. "What a creative way to include our city in the celebration."
The issuance of the commemorative stamp caught the entire philatelist community off-guard. It is usually a two-year process to design and approve an official Canada Post legal mail stamp. The Crown corporation issues its upcoming stamps about a year in advance. Baby Prince George was born in July and already there is a royal-approved stamp ready for sticking.
In the fray of preparing the mail image, someone in Ottawa also snapped their fingers and remembered there was a Canadian city with the same name as the royal baby.
"I wish I could tell you who, exactly, thought of it," said Losier. "We have a stamp group that does a lot of research and does spectacular work coming up with connections of meaning and linking the people of Canada to the stamps we issue as deeply as we can. This was certainly an accelerated process, but whenever there are great moments in our history like this one, we think it's worth making that effort, and they deserve the credit for thinking of the city of Prince George and how that link will enhance this special stamp."
The stamp itself is a photograph taken by Kate's father Michael Middleton underwritten by the caption "HRH Prince George of Cambridge" and the French translation. I
The official "Day Of Issue" sheet - also popular with collectors - has an image of the stamp, a close-up of the sleeping baby, a photograph of the Parliament Hill Peace Tower bathed in blue light when the royal family announced to the world the newborn was a boy, and also two prominent black seals from the Prince George, B.C. post office.
The stamps go into circulation on Oct. 22.