Horizon Postage Labels Pt1-“Scales” Labels

Early in 2002 after successfully installing computer terminals in all post office branches, Royal Mail followed the lead set by postal authorities in the USA, South Africa, Spain, Australia, New Zealand and elsewhere, by producing at the post office counters labels to be used instead of stamps. These are known, after the computer network, Horizon labels. Unlike some other countries the British labels indicate the postal service for which payment is made. But also unlike some other countries, the British labels are plain white labels, printed in black using initially a simple (ithaca) dot matrix counter printer ,using the functionality originally designed for cheques. (known as a ‘slip printer’). The clerk had to manually feed each ‘sheetlet’  through the slip-printer , one label at a time. The sheetlets consist of two labels, the first of which is  fed through the printer and then revered to print the second label.

The First series of Labels are correctly known as ‘Scales’ labels , named after the application the Horizon system that generated them. (Nothing to do with the physical scales that you place the letter on!).

Scales labels can be identified as follows:

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