Robert Murray Stamp Shop opened in January 1977 and has been in the same location and under the same ownership ever since.
Robert (Bob) Murray started trading in stamps while at school, went on to work for Edinburgh's biggest auction house (Dowell's, part of the Phillips group), then decided to go his own way.
The retail shop is situated on the north side of Edinburgh and has always been a general philatelic business, proud to cater for collectors of all standards. In 1981 the shop was doubled in size by taking over the premises next door. Initially only handling philatelic material (stamps, covers, accessories and books), customer demand saw the range extended to also cover postcards, cigarette cards, coins, medals, and banknotes.
His first public auction was held in March 1977, and they have been held continuously since, at a frequency of between six and ten each year. Hundreds of tons of lots have been handled over the years, from single rarities to massive accumulations, and that has included some important individual collections. Robert Murray's policy has always been to strive for good quality descriptions, and to decline material where he thought vendors' reserves were too high.
Robert Murray is a well-known and experienced speaker, mainly on philatelic subjects. He has spoken on very varied subjects to specialist societies and general interest groups alike. For a number of years he was a regular guest on local radio while they had their "Phone the Expert" feature, and he has written numerous general and specialist articles in the philatelic press.
In recent years he has - time permitting - run series of workshops on various philatelic subjects. Bob says "I think it is important that collectors should have the opportunity to learn more about their hobby, to get inspiration to help them enjoy their hobby even more, and to get some of the tools which will stop them from becoming victim to pitfalls. It is also a great way for me to keep my thinking sharp, and you never know what interesting questions are going to come up."
Business changed dramatically in March 2020 due to the effect of Coronavirus, but activities have been restructured to take account of the current situation, with the auctions now being run online.