The first British postal stamp featured the image of Queen Victoria, and it was issued in 1840. The stamp was known as the Penny Black because of its cost and color. It is believed to be the first adhesive postal stamp released.
Following in the footsteps of the Penny Black, all postal stamps from 1840 in the United Kingdom featured an image of the sitting monarch at the time of release. In the 1960s, Royal Mail recognized the potential for generating additional revenue by releasing specialty stamps with other images. As of 2014, both stamp varieties are sold in postal offices across the country.