With the help of his wife, daughter and grandchildren, Alan Roy spent 70 years painstakingly peeling off about two million stamps from envelopes.
The industrial-scale operation involved the family spending hours soaking thousands of the envelopes in water and carefully lifting the stamps off with tweezers.
Mr Roy would then meticulously dry them by lining them up in rows on kitchen cooling trays that snaked around the family's two-bedroomed flat.
His collection is so vast that it fills up 40 packing crates that stack as high as a house.
There are stamps from all over the globe and marking numerous historical events such as Olympic Games and World Cups.
Now, following Mr Roy's recent death aged 76, his family say they never want to see another stamp again and are selling the collection.
The stockpile is so great it could make them tens of thousands of pounds.
They are also having to be sold over a series of auctions as they would flood the market and cause stamp prices to plummet if they were made available in one go.
His daughter Janette Dorrell, 50, from Poole, Dorset, said her late father's hobby was the bane of her childhood.
She said: "You could say that I never want to see another stamp ever again.
"Dad started when he was very young, long before he became a postman, and it just grew and grew, it was relentless.
"I grew up surrounded by stamps. He used to get sacks and sacks of used envelopes delivered to the flat from various contacts from around the world and he used my old baby bath to peel them off.
"We had to put the bits of paper with the stamps on in the warm water and leave them for 20 minutes and let them detach.
"We then used tweezers to hook out each stamp very, very carefully and put them in rows on blotting paper placed on kitchen cooling trays and left them on the lounge floor to dry.
"There would be row after row of these trays and we had to be very careful where we trod or when we opened the door.
"The stamps were put in bundles of 100 and then packs of 1,000. He was very meticulous and labelled them ready for sale.
"As soon as I moved out and married when I was 21 he filled my old room up with his stamps.
"When I left my mother took over as the main helper but he often roped in my two twin daughters to help.
"He was going to sell them after he retired but he didn't get around to it and died.
"We are selling them now for him, that is what he wanted and what he was striving towards.
"But it is a huge emotional thing as well as they are so many memories of my father attached to these stamps."
The auctioneers selling them don't know for sure how many stamps there are as it is impossible to count them, but the collection is up to two million.
On average Mr Roy knocked out 80 stamps per day or nearly 30,000 per year.
Auctioneer David Elliott has been unable to put a true value on them because he is unable to complete the time consuming task of cataloguing them.
He said there are about one million stamps from Britain, 500,000 from Ireland, 400,000 from the rest of the world and 50,000 Christmas themed stamps and all dating back 70 years.
He said: "He was trying to sort them and catalogue them so he could sell them in little packs but he sadly died before he could finish it.
"This just consumed his life. It would take us another 70 years to thoroughly break them down so we are just going to break them up in marketable lots, like stamps from Ireland or ones relating to Christmas, and sell them in packs or boxes of several thousand.
"We expect to sell them to large stamp dealers who will have the resources to finish Mr Roy's work and organise them.
"It's a colossal amount of stamps. I've never seen anything like it."
Hugh Jeffries, editor of the stamp magazine Gibbons Stamp Monthly, said: "It's enormous and may well be one of the biggest collections, certainly by an individual.
"It is very uncommon to collect stamps in this manner. He has obviously gone for quantity over the individual rarity of stamps.
"But having done it that way, there is a very good chance of there being a few hidden gems in there. It will be a bit of a gamble for the dealers who buy them but it could quite easily pay off."
The first auction takes place at Elliotts of Wimborne, Dorset, on November 28.
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