1968 Christmas Paintings issue from Sanda, featuring Raphael’s Madonna with the Blue Diadem (credited to “Sanzio”), Madonna of the Book by Botticelli (“Filipepi”), and a third painting by an unspecified 15th century artist.
U/M / Unmounted Mint / MNH / Mint Never Hinged.
Sanda is a small, privately owned island off the southern tip of the Kintyre peninsula in Scotland, and began issuing its own local carriage labels in 1962.
Initially, at least, these local stamps are understood to have been used on letters posted by the island's owners, lighthouse staff and visitors - to cover the cost of transporting mail to the nearest GPO post box on the mainland - though within a few years Sanda's stamp issues soon became increasingly targeted at collectors.
Almost 300 different Sanda stamps were issued until 1986, with a brief resumption, under new ownership, in 2004.