Foxtel has commenced filming a landmark documentary series titled The Stamp of Australia that tells the story of how Australians have communicated with each other and the world over the past 200 years.
Exclusively commissioned for Foxtel’s The History Channel, The Stamp of Australia will be broadcast in 2009 as two one-hour episodes and will coincide with the Bicentenary of the post office and the appointment of the nation’s first postmaster, in Sydney, on 25 April 1809.
The Stamp of Australia will look at the way Australians conquered our nation’s notorious tyranny of distance – from the day the first letters arrived in the colony in 1790, to the establishment of the first post office in 1809, to blazing mail trails by horseback before the Pony Express in America, the chaotic communications on the gold-fields, the effect of immigration, the advent of the telegraph, the two World Wars, airmail, and how the humble stamp set the scene for the new nation’s first republican debate.
The two-part series will be hosted by Scott McGregor and is currently being shot in locations around Australia.
Brendon Moo, Foxtel’s Head of Factual Channels, said The Stamp of Australia is an enthralling documentary series that will chronicle Australia’s history through the role of the post office over the past 200 years.
“Australians have written intimate letters about their lives over the past 200 years – letters delivered by lone horsemen, camel drivers, Cobb & Co coaches and the flimsiest aircraft,” he said.
“The Stamp of Australia will document some remarkable stories, such as how Australian POW’s had their mail delivered by a Japanese bomber on a bombing raid of Port Moresby. This documentary project will be a milestone event for The History Channel audiences and reinforces our focus on developing exclusive local productions for subscription television.”
The Stamp of Australia project has been developed by Hammerklavier Productions, with support from Film Australia, Australia Post and Foxtel.