Peter Maxwell Davies (8 September 1934 – 14 March 2016) was one of the most significant figures in post-War European music. He rose to prominence in the late 1960s with neo-expressionistic music-theatre pieces Eight Songs for a Mad King and Vesalii Icones, orchestra scores Worldes Blis and St Thomas Wake, and his opera Taverner. Many works were composed for the distinctive chamber sextet, The Fires of London.

His work list included 10 Symphonies, and 10 Strathclyde Concertos written for the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, and many works for young performers. He was active as a conductor, both of his own works and standard repertoire. He was Master of the Queen's Music (2004-14) and Visiting Professor of Composition at the Academy from 2006.

A Last Postcard from Sanday was collected from Peter Maxwell Davies’ home on the island of Sanday after his death. The composer gives no indication of dynamics or articulation so for this reason the manuscript is reproduced to allow performers the opportunity to make their own interpretation from what they see.