| 22.1°C Dublin

Heaney gets the stamp of approval

AN Post has honoured the memory of one of Ireland's greatest writers.

The postal company usually takes around two years to produce a new stamp, but it has developed one for Seamus Heaney to mark one year since his death.

According to An Post, the stamp was created following "massive demand" from the public for a stamp celebrating the author and poet.

Heaney passed away aged 74 on August 30 last year, following a short illness.

Hundreds of people, including figures from the worlds of the arts and politics, attended his funeral at the Church of the Scared Heart, Donnybrook, Dublin.

The commemorative stamp has been priced at 68c and features a black and white picture of a pensive but happy looking Heaney.

"We usually develop around 30 new stamps a year, sometimes in sets of four," a spokesman for An Post told the Herald.


"It usually takes around two years to turn around a stamp, but in this case there was a massive demand for a stamp for Seamus Heaney.

"It was decided that a year after his death was the best time to complete the stamp," the spokesman added.

Stamp ideas are considered by the postal company's philatelic advisory committee. The final subject of a stamp and the stamp's design is signed off on by the Cabinet.

"We are immensely moved that An Post has chosen to mark dad's memory with the issue of this stamp," Seamus's son Michael said at a viewing of the new stamp at the GPO.

"The year since he died has been a sad time for our family, but this is not only a wonderful testament to his life and work, but also a reminder of the generosity and support people have shown since dad's passing," he said.

Heaney was the recipient of the 1995 Nobel Prize in Literature.