Probably most important, is the annual PTS Directory.
This contains the names, addresses, telephone and fax numbers, Internet and E-Mail details, along with the areas of business and speciality stock for each member. In separate sections the user can search by geographic locality for members, by the type of stock for which he is searching, or by the type of business which he requires.
This publication is FREE to members, to reference libraries, and to all societies affiliated to the ABPS in Great Britain, and is available for purchase by the general public.
The PTS News is published approximately every other month, is strictly confidential and is available to members only. It is not intended to cover the same ground as general philatelic magazines so it does not, in general, contain book reviews, philatelic society events or details of New Issues or Auction results.
It will contain news, views, pictures and information which is thought to be beneficial to the membership. Included will be confidential information concerning unsatisfactory business transactions and theft, details of amendments to VAT regulations or other Government legislation as it relates to the membership and interesting news from around the world.
General information concerning the Society’s activities and reports from various Committees are given where appropriate, particularly those which give advice on problems. Separate sections detail forthcoming Auctions, Fairs and Exhibitions. Also published are details of new membership applications, changes of members address/ telephone/fax numbers and other relevant details.
A perennial problem seems to be the incidence of theft and occasionally the mislaying of philatelic material. The PTS operates the RED CALL system to ensure that the details are broadcast to as wide as possible an area both within, and where necessary outside, the trade.
The report is received by the office and the Secretary will decide on the scope of the alert. This can be any combination of one or more of the UK. regions, Europe, or in postal terms, the old Zones 1 or 2. The details are typed and sent by Email the same day if possible. Details are also published in the following PTS Newsletter so that you can always have a copy for reference.
Reports come in from members, the public, insurance companies and the police. These must be in writing and obviously the more detail the better. If they have been reported to the police then a Crime Reference number, conatact name and telephone number should be supplied. Good photocopies or scans of the material are a great help. The complete lists may not always be published, but reference copies are held in the office which can be used to confirm any possible sightings.
Over the years this system has resulted in the recovery of significant amounts of material.
Our most recent communication is via the PTS Web-Site, which although primarily intended for public consumption, can also be used by members to check up-to-date details. It carries the full Directory listings and is configured to allow searches by geographical, specialist stock and type of business. This will allow prospective customers the opportunity to contact YOU directly. In addition, if you have a site of your own, this can be detailed with direct links, so having found you they can view your site and make E-Mail contact.
Exhibitions – STAMPEX
Stampex has been organised by the PTS for over 50 years and is now established as the premier philatelic exhibition in the UK. Visitors to the exhibitions are assured of the most diverse range of material for inspection, appealing to all levels of collecting interest. Dealers and postal administrations regularly attend.
Two exhibitions are held each year. Autumn Stampex hosts the British Philatelic Competitions, organised by the ABPS, in which the cream, and aspiring cream, of British collecting interests are on display.
Spring Stampex is graced by a major invited display from one of the many Specialist Societies. In 2010 this will be the South African Collectors Society. Apart from “home-grown” exhibits these displays are often complemented by articles from major collections.
Stampex exhibitions are held at the Business Design Centre in Islington, a venue which allows all the attractions and dealers to be housed under one roof in a modern spacious environment with full facilities for dealers and visitors alike.
The exhibitions are run by a Committee drawn from the membership with the addition of personalities whom the Committee feel will be able to bring specialist knowledge and experience to the organisation. Stampex actively supports philatelic societies by offering display space and meeting rooms. Complimentary tickets are distributed through the philatelic press and to societies, which, with a comprehensive advertising schedule, ensures that all collectors are aware of the exhibitions.
Participation in Stampex is confined to Members of the PTS and a few dealers, who are members of other trade organisations, and who are approved by the Committee.
Most International Exhibitions ensure that full details of their events, including information particularly pertinent to prospective stand-holders, are sent to the PTS. We keep this on file for Members use, and the information is also published in the PTS News.
Sometimes the Government offers financial assistance to specific overseas exhibitions through the D.T.I. In these instances the PTS will act as sponsor and organiser for parties of Members who wish to participate as stand-holders. These are also published through the PTS News.
Even in the best run businesses there is the occasional bad debt. The PTS will assist in attempting to recover the monies due, and will pursue the matter vigorously. All you have to do is submit your case to us in writing with the appropriate supporting documentation.
Whilst we will not institute or take part in any legal proceedings, the mere “threat” of being approached by a Trade Organisation is enough in the majority of cases to produce the required result.
This service is entirely free to members and will normally be your cheapest collection method in the first instance. However the service does not exist as an alternative to good practice, and will only be offered where normal methods have failed to produce action.
The problem with stamp-related products is that many dealers are relatively small and it is difficult to obtain accurate and reliable credit references. The PTS maintains extensive and continually up-dated records concerning customers with whom Members have previously experienced problems.
These details are regularly notified in the PTS News and it is sometimes well worth a phone call if you have any doubts about a prospective client. It can save you considerable problems, not to mention significant financial losses.
This service is for PTS Members ONLY, and as a Member you are obliged to adhere to the rules which govern the service.
We have a number of members specialising in the insurance which dealers and collectors require. – Many Members face the imposition of significantly higher premiums for insurance if they trade from home or simply keep large collections there. Failing to declare such circumstances could invalidate a normal policy.
For insurances you should contact directly one of these specialist members.
Society logo – The PTS Shield
Members are encouraged to use the Society logo on their business stationery and in their commercial advertisements. Let your customers know that you are a member of a reputable organisation