Friday, 19 March 2010

Stamp Collecting : The New Match Attax?

Even though he doesn't like football, Louis has been caught up in his first serious schoolboy craze, collecting Match Attax cards. Along with many of the other boys he left the house each morning with his collector's album weighing down his book bag and has been heard on the phone to his friend Josh, a fellow collector in the Midlands, talking knowledgeably about Stephen Gerard. In a non-sport following household I found this level of knowledge quite impressive and I'm also pleased with the attention he gives to cataloguing his collection.

The activity has not been without its downsides. 'Man of the Match' cards have disappeared without trace and I had to stand in the school playground looking threatening whilst Louis retrieved a card from a 'friend' when a promised swap hadn't materialised. Mothers are heard to recount horror stories about how this seemingly innocent craze has caused disruption to family life and, although Louis was in a state of shock, it came as no surprise to me when the cards were banned from school last week. Obviously the teachers' point of endurance in terms of sorting out the squabbles had been reached!

So in view of the pleasure that collecting something has brought I came up with the bright idea of buying both Louis and Josh stamp collecting sets for their respective 7th and 8th birthdays. I reckoned that this activity has parallels with the football card habit but could be cheaper and more educational. By buying albums for more than one child it also meant that they had someone to swap duplicates with. I'm not completely sure that my idea will be successful but decided to give it a go. Who knows - there's a slim chance it may start a new national craze!

This set is available from Stanley Gibbon's own website or you may find it cheaper on Ebay. I bought my two sets from someone who also has their own website who were efficient and friendly.

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