The Royal Mail Year Pack is the feisty little brother of the Year Book. It includes all the past year’s pictorial stamps, plus a quick run-down on the subject that inspired them. This is the tenth one I’ve written, and while it’s not a Marathon like the Year Book, it’s still a testing 1500 metres. You have around 200 words to cover anything from Space Science to Charles Dickens to British comics. Which means keeping the words punchy yet informative, finding an interesting angle, and casting a small but incisive spotlight on the subject in hand.

For the designer, it’s an equally demanding task. They need to encapsulate the visual spirit of 100 or so stamps on the front and back of a simple fold-out. This year, Magpie Studio did a sterling job of not only of bringing such disparate material together, but also in expressing a sense of British pride in the year of the Golden Jubilee and the Olympic Games.