David Bowie stamps launched into space

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The Royal Mail stamps are now falling to earth

Royal Mail stamps honouring the late David Bowie have been propelled towards space while attached to helium balloons.

In January, it was announced that Bowie was to be honoured with a set of 10 tribute stamps. Six of the stamps feature images of Bowie album covers: ‘Hunky Dory’, ‘Aladdin Sane’, “Heroes”, ‘Let’s Dance’, ‘Earthling’ and ‘Blackstar’. The remaining four stamps feature images of Bowie performing live on different tours: 1972’s The Ziggy Stardust Tour, 1978’s The Stage Tour, 1983’s The Serious Moonlight Tour and 2004’s A Reality Tour. The stamps are available to buy from today (March 14).

The Guardian now reports that 52 sets of the stamps – representing the 52 years of Bowie’s career – have been propelled into the stratosphere as an apparent homage to Bowie’s 1976 film The Man Who Fell To Earth. The stamp-attached balloons reached 34,100m at a vertical speed of about 12mph. Having burst, the stamps have now started to descend to earth. Fans who correctly guess where “the stamps that fell to earth” landed will win limited-edition covers.

As well as Bowie, The Beatles in 2010 and Pink Floyd in 2015 are the only previous music acts to be honoured with an entire “stamp issue” of this kind. Bowie is the first solo music artist to be honoured by Royal Mail in this way.

Royal Mail’s Philip Parker has said in a statement: “For five decades David Bowie was at the forefront of contemporary culture, and has influenced successive generations of musicians, artists, designers and writers. Royal Mail’s stamp issue celebrates this unique figure and some of his many celebrated personas.”