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Demise of 'Made in England Cards'

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The introduction of the universal penny post (in the 19th century) caused the greeting cards to be made commercially (about 1843). Cards came is all shapes and sizes and were a lot more than simply being printed on flat card. Many cards were 6 1/2 inches wide or square, and decorative effects made them slightly wider.
The post office saw many millions of cards being posted which could be made to pay more, (60 million people in the uk send and receive billions of birthday, xmas and other cardss). The post office saw an opportunity to make more revenue, and so introduced special conditions/prices (these do not apply to e.g. cards posted to the EU), the post office made regulations that envelopes could not be wider than 16.5 mm (many UK greeting cards were 17mm), or thicker than 5mm if the card was having an normal postage stamp on it. People buying numerous cards and posting them with an ordinary stamp did not realise they were 2.5 mm wider than the 16.5mm max, or more than 5mm thick, and so the person receiving the card had to pay over £1.00 as a surcharge, and were not very happy! The embaressed senders would complain to the high street shops, who now tend to produce more flat (boring?) cards, rather than have the customer pay 75p for a large letter stamp because the card is a few millimetres too wide. Many of these cards were made to sell for around £3.15, and a selection have been obtained by SendMyCard and put on the site; these and other 'retro' cards are proving very popular. It may be the drupal web design, or it may be the very unique ''made in UK', not just Printed in UK!)cards - a graph of web site hits keeps going up.


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