Red British mailboxes painted gold for Olympians

August 2, 2012 - 11:39 AM
London Olympics Cycling Men

The handout photo provided by Royal Mail on Thursday, Aug. 2, 2012 shows British cyclist Bradley Wiggins with his gold medal and a new stamp celebrating his gold medal in the Men's Road Cycling Time Trial. (AP Photo/Royal Mail)

LONDON (AP) — Britain is turning red into gold.

Some of the country's iconic red mailboxes were painted gold Thursday, to celebrate gold medals won by British Olympians.

Champion cyclist Bradley Wiggins and rowers Helen Glover and Heather Stanning were honored with a gold mailbox in each of their hometowns, Royal Mail said.

It's the first time the mail service has changed the color of its mailboxes in more than a century. The boxes have been red since 1874.

The Royal Mail plans to paint another mail box gold every time a British Olympic or Paralympic athlete wins a gold medal during the London games. The pillar boxes will remain in use, and will stay gold for some time. The mail service did not specify when they will be repainted red.

It is also selling special gold medal stamps to celebrate all of the nation's champions. Stamps commemorating Wiggins, Glover and Stanning went on sale Thursday.