Many of your readers will have seen that postage stamps are changing.

From August 1 the ‘everyday’ stamps showing the Queen’s head on a plain coloured background will only be valid if they have a unique barcode on the right-hand side.

From that date, using the old, non-barcoded stamps will result in a surcharge for the person you send the item to.

I encourage people to use-up any stamps they have in wallets or purses before July 31.

Customers who cannot use any non-barcoded stamps before July 31 will still be able to swap them for new barcoded stamps through Royal Mail’s simple and free Swap Out scheme. Nobody should be out of pocket as a result of this change.

A leaflet with a form was delivered to every household recently, but customers can also print out a form from our website; call our Customer Experience team to order one; or pick one up at a local Royal Mail delivery office or Post Office.

Non-barcoded Christmas and other Special stamps with pictures on continue to be valid for postage and should not be swapped.

Nick Landon Chief Commercial Officer, Royal Mail