Williamstown author Leigh Hobbs has been honoured with his own stamp.
He is among five storytellers featured in the 2019 Australian Legends of Children’s Literature stamp issue, joining Mem Fox, Morris Gleitzman, Alison Lester and Shaun Tan.
Hobbs, who was the Australian Children’s Laureate for 2016-17, created the lovable characters Old Tom, Horrible Harriet, Fiona the Pig, Mr Badger and Mr Chicken.
“It’s obviously an honour and I’m thrilled, but in my case maybe the term ‘legend’ is a bit over the top,” Hobbs said. “Sharing my stamp with Mr Chicken takes the pressure off a little. Some kids think he’s a legend.”
Hobbs, who received a 24-carat gold replica of his stamp from Australia Post, has been busy posting mail.
“Yes, I admit I have used my stamp already – a number of times,” he said.
“Australia Post very kindly sent me my own supply, luckily as the Williamstown post office sold out.
“The timing is great as I’ve just completed all the artwork for the next Mr Chicken book,
Mr Chicken all over Australia. He’ll arrive in bookshops later this year. All this attention would go to his head if he had one.”
Australia Post’s Nicole Sheffield said the stamps recognised celebrated authors who had created stories that children and adolescents loved and remembered.
“These authors hold a very special place in the bookshelves of many Australian families and we’re excited to celebrate their achievements with this new stamp release,” she said.
Past stamps have featured Sir Donald Bradman, Barry Humphries, Cate Blanchett and Rod Laver.