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We kick off Spring with Birds of Prey and British Engineering

Cotswold Birds of Prey FDC

Birds of Prey (4th April) is a stunning issue, with stamps and retail booklet available, which we think would work really well with our envelope!

The British Engineering issue (2nd May) is also very interesting with the advances of technology. By studying the stamps and reading the information, we’ve learnt quite a lot about both issues! We’re sure you will find it equally interesting!

Tim Flach: Photographer of Birds

Tim Flach works in a studio in Shoreditch, in the East End of London. Many of his photographs are of captive animals and are taken under highly controlled conditions with the help of a large support team. Flach uses his images to highlight the environmental message that as humans, we are more detached from nature than ever before, and that “for our own wellbeing, we have to reconnect with the wild.”

When not in a studio, Flach often tries to photograph wild animals in their natural habitat, as this is “essential to the conversation of endangered animals”.  Flach’s work has appeared in the National Geographic, The New York Times, The Guardian and The New Scientiest.

Royal Academy of Engineering

Initially called the Fellowship of Engineering, it had the enthusiastic backing of HRH Prince Phillip, Duke of Edinburgh, who became its Senior Fellow. The new Fellowship met for the first time on 11th June 1976 at Buckingham Palace, where 130 of the UK’s finest engineers were enrolled – people who, over the course of their careers, had literally changed the world. Engineering like the jet engine visionary, Sir Frank Whittle, design guru, Sir One Arup; radar pioneer, Sir George Macfarlane; bouncing bomb inventor, Sir Barnes Wallis; Lord Hinton, who had driven the UK’s supremacy in nuclear power, and Sir Maurice Wilkes, father of the UK computer industry.

The UK still sits at the forefront of construction, from the world’s only rotating boat lift, located in Falkirk , to Crossrail, Europe’s largest construction project. And British engineers are helping to keep us healthy, with the three-way catalytic converter cleaning the air that we breathe, synthetic bone grafts, changing the life of patients, and superconductor magnets for MRI machines – a mainstay in hospitals worldwide – assisting with diagnosis.

Did you know…?

  • By 1903, red kites had been persecuted close to extinction.
  • In 1954, all birds of prey except for buzzards and sparrow hawks became protected under law.
  • The defining characteristics of birds of prey is that they are carnivores.
  • In many raptors, the females are larger than the males, a trait called ‘reverse size dimorphism’.
  • The first engineer known by name was the Egyptian pyramid builder Imhotep, around 2700BC. He built the first pyramids in Egypt and thus gained an almost god-like status.
  • The word ‘engineer’ is revived from the Latin word ‘ingenium’, which means ‘native talent’ or ‘cleverness’.
  • The Royal Academy of Engineering was born in 1976, the year of Concorde’s first commercial flight.
  • HRH Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, has been the Senior Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering since 1976.
  • Only 11% of UK engineers today are women.
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