The Postmaster General limply claims the insignia do not recognise them as serving postboxes. Others say the decision may have come from the political de - colonisation skunks works units as recently occurred with the castration of the Hong Police 1967 history period?
There are still 59 serving boxes in Hong Kong. The oldest box bears the marking royal cypher GRV during the reign of King George V and served Hong Kong residents for 130 years. There are eight in-service GRV or GRVI post boxes. One manufactured during Queen Victoria (VR) reign 1837 -1901 was retired and is exhibited in the Central Post Office.
British-designed letter boxes can still be found throughout the UK, Ireland and in many former nations of the British Empire and members of the Commonwealth and other countries. In some cases, they indicate an interesting historical study of a nation’s development.
Most British houses have a simple letter box in the front door, usually a slot with a flap over it, through which the post is delivered. The Post Office first encouraged people to provide these in 1849. Similar letter boxes were provided at post offices for people sending letters. One such letter box which was originally in the wall of the Wakefield Post Office has the date 1809 on it and is probably the oldest British letter box still in existence.
In 1840 Rowland Hill suggested the idea of roadside letter boxes for Britain. Letter boxes of this kind were already in use such as France, Belgium and Germany. There were no roadside letter boxes in the British Isles until 1852. The first pillar boxes were erected at St. Hellier in Jersey at the recommendation of Anthony Trollope, a Post Office Surveyor's Clerk.
In 1853 the first pillar box on the British mainland was erected at Botchergate, Carlyle. A similar box from the same year still stands at Barnes Cross, Bishop's Caundle in Dorset. It is the oldest pillar box still in use. Most of the early boxes were similar in design to the Channel Island boxes. But there were variations.
They are recognised the world over and are frequently featured in tourist brochures, postcards and greetings cards. They are sought after by collectors throughout the world and adorn gardens, office premises and even aboard ships.
Post Boxes Colour
The earliest boxes on Jersey were red, green was not introduced universally until 1859. The colour of letter boxes is a part of the nature of the iconic post box. Everyone remembers when letter boxes were pillar box red. Early boxes, however, were camouflage green so as not to appear too obtrusive in the landscape. So effective was this that complaints were received by people having difficulty finding them.
In the 1930s special boxes were introduced for posting airmail letters, these were painted blue. From 1938 blue airmail boxes were removed and repainted red from 1938. In 2012 post boxes in the home towns of Great Britain’s London 2012 Olympic Games gold medal winners were painted gold.The Postal Services Act 2011, which paved the way for privatisation, But the act does not specify what colour those boxes should be.
The HK Commissioner for Heritage’s Office only plans to preserve nine of them: the seven King George V postboxes, one King George VI postbox and one oval-shaped Elizabeth II postbox.
The Hong Kong Post’s decision to cover up all royal insignia including those on the nine fore-mentioned is puerile. The preservation of Hong Kong’s iconic heritage post boxes slipped under the radar of the Antiquities and Monuments Ordinance somehow also and it is recommended that there should be a public consultation over the remaining post boxes.
History can never be exorcised through a pathetic brush of whitewash!