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Sir Nicholas Winton to be honoured with commemorative postage stamp, Royal Mail confirms

Royal Mail will honour Nicholas Winton with a commemorative stamp in 2016. Credit: PA

A man celebrated as "Britain's Schindler" for saving hundreds of children from the Holocaust will be immortalised on a Royal Mail stamp after a petition attracted more than 105,000 supporters.

Campaigners called for Sir Nicholas Winton, who arranged for eight trains to carry 669 mainly Jewish children from Nazi-occupied Czechoslovakia to London in 1939, to be honoured with a commemorative postage stamp.

A change.org petition, launched by Jewish News, argued the stamp would be a "fitting tribute" to Sir Nicholas, who died last month aged 106. It received over 105,800 signatures, including Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis, Conservative ex-minister Eric Pickles and Birmingham Edgbaston Labour MP Gisela Stuart.

A spokeswoman for Royal Mail said it was "pretty clear" that Sir Nicholas was a "worthy candidate" to be featured in a commemorative stamp set.

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One of the purposes of Royal Mail stamps is to honour those who have made important contributions to the UK, and every year we consider hundreds of subjects for inclusion. It is clear that Sir Nicholas Winton is a worthy candidate.

Now we have consulted with his family, we are delighted to confirm our intention to feature Sir Nicholas on a stamp as part of a commemorative set, subject to the appropriate approvals, in 2016. The details will be confirmed in due course.

– Spokeswoman for Royal Mail
Sir Nicholas Winton kept his heroic actions secret for over 50 years. Credit: PA

The editor of the Jewish News, Justin Cohen, who co-authored the petition with editor Richard Ferrer, said:

Sir Nicholas shied away from the 'hero' label but we could think of no one more deserving of this rare honour.

His inspirational story shows that one person truly can make a difference and we hope the stamp will bring his heroic efforts to the attention of even more people.

We would like to thank the Royal Mail for acting in almost unprecedented speed as well as each and every one of those who signed the petition without whom this triumph may not have happened.

– Justin Cohen, editor of the Jewish News

Sir Nicholas, from a German-Jewish family kept his pre-war actions secret for over 50 years.

He was reunited with some of the children he saved on Esther Rantzen's That's Life TV programme in 1988, after his wife Grete found an old briefcase in the attic with lists of children and letters from their parents