Royal Mail will be printing special postmarks on letters and parcels to commemorate the 170th anniversary of A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens.
A Christmas Carol was first published on Tuesday, December 17, 1843. Set in Victorian London during the 19th century and telling the tale of Ebenezer Scrooge.
The book initially sold six thousand copies when it was first released. It is now enjoyed around the world by millions of people through various film and TV adaptations.
The postmark will read 1843 – 2013 Celebrating 170 years of A Christmas Carol.
Postmark for the 170th anniversary of the first publication of A Christmas Carol
This year also marks the 170th anniversary of the first Christmas cards ever sent and another postmark will commemorate this.
The anniversary comes as Royal Mail has found sending Christmas cards remain popular. Independent research from One Poll commissioned by Royal Mail found 72% of people would prefer to receive a traditional card to any electronic festive greeting sent through social media channels.
The survey also found people on average expect to send 18 cards.
Stephen Agar, managing director at Royal Mail, said: “We’re really pleased to be marking these historic anniversaries, which have both played significant roles in shaping the UK’s cultural and social landscape.
“Our postmarks are a special way of commemorating important moments and we are proud we can mark occasions in this way and share them with our customers on their mail across the UK.”
The untold story of one of Dickens’ most colourful and enduring villains is to be released on YouTube on Christmas Eve.
The award-winning film Magwitch, partly shot in Medway, premiered at Rochester Cathedral in February last year to mark the bicentenary of his birth.
The film Magwitch, partly shot in Medway, is being released on YouTube
It went on to be screened at the Aesthetica Short Film Festival in York, the Cornwall Film Festival and the Morelia Film Festival in Mexico and won best film at the Swale Film Festival.
The prequel to Great Expectations, was directed by Medway born and bred 24-year-old Samuel Supple and featured local extras.
It was shot at Sandwich Guildhall, Upnor Castle plus the original locations from David Lean’s Great Expectations along the Thames Estuary.
Writer and director Samuel Supple said: “The novel Great Expectations begins in the churchyard at Cooling on a foggy Christmas Eve. So what an ideal time to release Magwitch online for everyone to see - Christmas Eve 2013.”