2011 Jodrell.jpg
2011  Jodrell Bank

In 2011 October Royal Mail issued the first half of a UK A–Z series in which each letter of the alphabet was represented by a location in the UK. For the letter J they chose the Jodrell Bank radio observatory in Cheshire, illustrated with a photograph by Charlie Waite of the 250-ft (76-m) Lovell Telescope towering above local farmhouses. This same telescope was shown on the first-ever GB astronomical stamp in 1966, although back then it was simply known as the Mark I radio telescope; the name Lovell Telescope was not applied to it until 1987, in honour of the observatory’s founder, Sir Bernard Lovell. Opened in 1957, the telescope was substantially rebuilt in 1971 with the addition of a new bowl and support structure. It was resurfaced again in 2001–02 and now forms the core of the e-MERLIN network consisting of seven radio telescopes in England.

The Royal Mail publicity for the stamps said:
“For over 50 years the giant Lovell Telescope at Jodrell Bank has been a familiar feature of the Cheshire landscape and an internationally renowned landmark in the world of astronomy. Since the summer of 1957 it has been quietly probing the depths of space, a symbol of our wish to understand the universe in which we live. Even now, it remains one of the biggest and most powerful radio telescopes in the world, spending most of its time investigating cosmic phenomena which were undreamed of when it was conceived.”


Stanley Gibbons no. ???