FRANCE. Salon Philatélique de Printemps - Belfort 2016

In 2015, after the poor results of some of the recent spring philatelic fairs held in various French cities, the CNEP (Chambre syndicale française des négociants et experts en philatélie) decided to hold the fair in Paris (see article, also published in VARIABLE 36). However, in 2016, they decided to try their luck again outside the capital, and chose the city of Belfort. It was not a random decision; Belfort is located in the northeast of the country, near the German and Swiss borders. Also, very importantly, four years previously, the local philatelic association, l'Amicale Philatélique de l'Est-Belfort - Aphiest, had successfully organized another great philatelic event, Timbres Passion 2012 (see article, and VARIABLE 27).

The Salon Philatélique de Printemps 2016 was held over the weekend of Friday 1st to Sunday 3rd of April, in the the Gymnase Le Phare, a large multipurpose pavilion located west of Belfort.

The fair brought together some 30 associated philatelic dealers who occupied the central space of the pavilion. Around them, the organization arranged the booths of the CNEP, l'Art du Timbre Gravé, and Aphiest, plus three philatelic services; Germany, Monaco and the TAAF (Terres Australes et Antarctiques Françaises), with its smug director in attendance.
Monaco advanced the date of issue of a stamp, dedicated to the visit of SAS Albert II to Belfort in June, to coincide with the Salon de Printemps.

In an adjoining pavilion, and coinciding with the celebration of the Salon, the local philatelic group - Aphiest de Belfort - organized Phila Grand Est, a major interregional philatelic championship. The FFAP youth section presented an amusing exhibition about the circus and fairgrounds.
Complementary to the philatelic event, a small art exhibition plus various local companies promoting their products, were located in the access area.

  At the back of the large hall, La Poste installed its usual temporary post office where visitors could acquire the different philatelic issues and postal material, as well as getting the special postmarks.
One of the postmarks is illustrated with the Tour de la Miotte, which also appeared in the vignette LISA issued in 2012
(see article, and VARIABLE 27).

On the occasion of the Salon, Phil@poste released the Belfort stamp, showing different monuments of the city, and a commemorative vignette LISA, the second dedicated to Belfort after the issue in 2012 of the Timbres Passion.
For its part, the CNEP put on sale a new block with a personalized stamp.

The designer of the new vignette is Florence Gendre, a Parisian illustrator whose first design for Phil@poste was the stamp dedicated to the physicist Georges Charpak, issued in February 2016. The composition of the LISA features different elements related to Belfort.

From left to right, the Salle des Fêtes, the 'La plage' scene of Eurockéennes, the tractor unit of a TGV Duplex, and a turbine blade. The two latter images are clear references to two important local industries, Alstom and General Electric.

Left. The Salle des Fêtes was built in 1913 next to the Palace of Justice, as a multipurpose room. A major renovation in progress, during 2016.
Below. The Eurockéennes de Belfort is the largest rock music festival held in France. The first show took place in 1989, and since then, it has been held every year, in late June or early July, on the peninsula of Lake Malsaucy, north of Belfort.

Phil@poste produced 30,000 labels with this design, printed on thermal self-adhesive paper, with phosphorescent vertical stripes at the edges of the design.
The local La Poste staff installed two IER LISA 2 Évolution postal kiosks next to this stand, where visitors could buy the new vignette LISA.

According to the current postage rate program installed in the IER LISA 2 postal kiosks, it was possible to obtain ATMs of this design with up to 32 different texts or indicators (16 shipment types + 16 franking complements), as well as stamps with just the face value. The minimum face value allowed by the machines was 0.10 EUR.
Inland economic mail - EC    ECOPLI Inland priority mail (J+2) - LV    LETTRE VERTE
Inland priority mail (J+1)
International priority mail

Unlike other philatelic exhibitions, both postal kiosks were connected to the postal network, so it was possible to obtain ATMs of this design with the 'LETTRE SUIVIE' indicators for national and international mail, along with their associated bar code labels.

Inland / Domestic tracked mail
Bar code label for domestic tracked mail

Since September 2015, test labels have been issued in pairs, one with a zero face value and the 'LETTRE PRIORITAIRE' indicator, plus a new label with a large black area to test the correct impression of the bar codes and the information on the label attached to the 'LETTRE SUIVIE' stamps.

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This page was created in June 2016
and last updated:  07.07.16 . English edition rewritten by S. Goodman (07.07.2016)