I want to philately! Freddie Mercury’s stamp collection goes on display
- Credit: PA/Postal Museum
Freddie Mercury’s childhood stamp album is to go on display at The Postal Museum.
The Queen singer went on to be one of the biggest stars in the world, with songs including Bohemian Rhapsody, Don’t Stop Me and One Vision, but for a few years as a boy, stamps were his passion.
The album will be on display at the museum in Phoenix Place, off Gray’s Inn Road, from July 13 to October 30.
The 54-page album consists predominately of stamps from the British Commonwealth and reveals not only Freddie’s early life in Zanzibar, but also his artistic talent.
Curator Georgina Tomlinson said: “The Postal Museum is delighted to be able to show this rare item from Freddie Mercury’s childhood which we are exhibiting to celebrate 50 years of Pride in the UK.
“The album, is a surprising insight into the early life of a man who is remembered across the world for his incredible musical prowess and theatrical stage presence.”
Freddie Mercury, born Farrokh Bulsara (1946-1991), spent his early life in Zanzibar where his father Bomi worked for the British Colonial Office. Bomi’s enthusiasm for stamp collecting was passed on to his son, who is believed to have collected from the ages of nine to 12.
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After the family moved to the UK in the 1960s Freddie studied graphic design at the Ealing College of Art. His artistic talent can be seen in the creation of the pages. The designs often use the stamps’ shape and colour to produce symmetry on the page.
In 1970 Freddie Brian May and Roger Taylor's band, Smile, and a year later John Deacon joined. They would be renamed Queen, and go on to become one of the biggest bands in the world. Queen's Greatest Hits has sold more than 25 million copies.
The stamp album was purchased at auction in 1993 with the proceeds going to the AIDS charity Mercury Phoenix Trust.
Since then, the album has been displayed at stamp shows in the UK, Prague, and Australia as well as touring exhibitions.
As well as seeing the album in the museum, visitors will be able explore the entire album, page by page, on The Postal Museum’s website.