In their rush to privatise the Royal Mail, the Lib Dem / Tory coalition government has said that there is no obligation for a new owner to keep the monarch's head on British stamps.
The UK is the only country not to identify itself by name on our stamps, as the monarch's head is used as identification - which has been the case since the world's first stamps were introduced in 1840.
Vince Cable, the Business Secretary, has been forced to admit that discussions were taking place after he admitted that there was no specific clause in the Postal Services Bill, setting out the terms of privatisation, which would force any new owner to do so. The leading bidders in the sale are expected to be German and Dutch operators.
Last week Royal Mail announced it was putting up the price of a first class stamp from 41p to 46p from April next year, in an attempt to generate more revenues ahead of any privatisation. The universal delivery service to every home in the UK, no matter how remote, is also thought to be under threat.