These are the dates you need to know for posting your Christmas cards and parcels

The new Royal Mail poster. Picture: Royal Mail/Press Association.
The new Royal Mail poster. Picture: Royal Mail/Press Association.
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A new poster has been created reminding people to post early for Christmas, including an image of a post van and postbox to ram home the message.

Royal Mail said it was evoking the spirit of previous art deco designs after commissioning Midlands-based artist Charles Avalon to illustrate this year’s version.

It said the vintage look was in tribute to posters used in the 1930s.

Mr Avalon said: “It was a great honour to be invited to work on a project designed to pay tribute to some of the iconic postal images of old.

“For many years, the postal service led the world with its innovative approach to creating eye-catching and practical posters in an art deco style. All these posters were linked by a very practical call to action, and made use of both striking and beautiful imagery to do so.

“With this design, we’ve reawakened the traditional Post Early For Christmas call to action in a fresh and modern way while drawing on the medium’s art deco roots.

“I envisioned a rural scene complete with the Royal Mail van and Royal Mail postbox at its heart, ready to deliver a community’s mail to friends and families across the UK.”

Latest recommended posting dates for Christmas 2016 are:

Tuesday December 20 for second class mail

Wednesday December 21 for first class mail

Thursday December 22 for special delivery

Friday December 23 for special delivery Saturday guaranteed