2017 Quarter 4 Change Checker “Scarcity Index” Released

Following the launch of the Change Checker “Scarcity Index” early last year, the final 2017 Quarter 4 Index has now been published.

50p Scarcity Index

It’s of little surprise that Kew Gardens maintains its top spot as the UK’s most sought after circulation coin with a perfect score of 100.

The mintage figures for the 2017 50p coins were released just before Christmas and have had an effect on the Scarcity Index scores. Interestingly, the Sir Isaac Newton 50p only scores a 3/100 which is lower than we anticipated. This is mainly due to the large number of Change Checkers who list having the coin in their collection. However, we are expecting this score to increase during the next quarter due to the low mintage figure, of just 1.8 million, driving demand.

Jemima Puddle-Duck remains the most scarce Beatrix Potter 50p, with Tom Kitten and Benjamin also scoring quite highly with a score of 13 and 7 respectively. Tom Kitten and Benjamin Bunny were only released into circulation in December so requests for swaps are high. Mintage figures for these coins are also relatively high so as more people find these coins in their change it is possible these scores will decrease slightly.

Interestingly, the mintage figure for the Jeremy Fisher 50p coin has been released, however the coin is not yet in circulation.

£2 Scarcity Index

There’s not a lot of movement in our Quarter 4 £2 “Scarcity Index” update.

The Commonwealth Games Wales £2 coin takes top spot from the Commonwealth Games Northern Ireland. This is down to the very large number of swap requests for this coin in the last quarter. At 99/100 the Northern Ireland coin is still very scarce (as are the other two coins in the Commonwealth Games series) and it’s very possible it will retake the number 1 spot next quarter.

We are still waiting for the Jane Austen and WWI Aviation £2 coins to be released into circulation, hence why they do not feature on our Index. We await the release of these and their mintage figures with great interest, could they be low like the Sir Isaac Newton 50p? It is possible.

How the Scarcity Index works

Generally collectors have had to rely upon mintage figures to identify the scarcest coins.  But they only tell part of the story.  Trying to find a good quality coin from 15 – 20 years ago, even for a higher mintage issue, is much more challenging than a more recent issue, as coins become damaged over time and are ultimately removed from circulation.

Additionally, some designs are more hoarded than others by people who might not normally collect coins – the recent poignant First World War £2 Coin series being an example.  Finally, it can be up to a couple of years before the Royal Mint eventually confirms the actual mintage for an issue.

That’s why we have combined the mintage information with two other key pieces of information.

  • How many of each design are listed as “collected” by Change Checkers, indicating the relative ease of finding a particular coin.
  • The number of times a design has been requested as a swap over the previous 3 months, showing the current level of collector demand.

Importantly, as new coins are released and popularity rises and falls across different designs the Scarcity Index will be updated quarterly allowing Change Checkers to track the relative performance of the UK’s circulation coins.

How much are my coins worth?

The Scarcity Index does not necessarily equate to value but it is certainly an effective indicator.  For example, the Kew Gardens 50p coin commands a premium of up to 160 times face value on eBay.

What about £1 Coins?

The £1 Scarcity Index has already been published for the Round £1 coins and, because they are no longer being issued, this is now set in stone.


  1. Dave Zipfel on February 2, 2018 at 1:09 pm

    Hi there I think i might have found a miss struck isaac Newton cos it has what looks like the pattern on the obverse as well as the reverse but not fully its around the bottom half of the coin. Has anyone else reported this?

    • Luke Hearn on February 2, 2018 at 2:02 pm

      Hi Dave, If possible, could you please email us a photo to [email protected] and we can take a look at it for you? Thanks Luke

      • Dave Zipfel on February 2, 2018 at 4:18 pm

        Yes no probs but new to this so bare with me lol. Also on the obverse there looks like a tear drop just below the nose… now going to try to get a pic to you…regards Dave

      • Dave Zipfel on February 2, 2018 at 4:38 pm

        Also just noticed that it seems to say fifty pench on the reverse now sending that as well ok … thx for your reply..regards Dave

      • Dave Zipfel on February 4, 2018 at 10:18 am

        Hi luke, did you get the pics. Just need to know that it worked for a change lol. Regards Dave

  2. Jas on January 20, 2018 at 1:40 am


    I have two Beatrix Potter 2016 peter Rabbit coins. Does anyone know how much they are worth? And I also have a Florence Nightingale £2 coin.

  3. Louise on January 16, 2018 at 12:04 am

    I have a silver 2 pence coin would this be worth anything??

  4. David Bartlett on January 15, 2018 at 12:00 am

    I have numerous amounts of of different £2 coins, including, a mint condition commonwealth games 2002 issue of all 4 coins, I don’t know how much it might be worth, but would be interested to know!!! I have every £2 coin issued since 1986.
    I have also kept hold of the full set (1983) upwards of £1 coins, including, the elusive 2016 coat of arms, the last one minted, before giving way to the new 12 sides coin.
    My 50p collection comprises every 50p from 1997 upwards, with a couple previous to 97’ I have the complete Olympic collection with many extras(swaps).
    I believe I have every set of coins, £2-£1 & 50p minted, since 2002

    • Les Kent on January 20, 2018 at 8:30 pm

      Hi David Bartlett
      Just as a matter of interest, are you saure you have every £2 & 50p
      how many £2 and how many 50ps do you have ?.
      If you want to descuss it.

  5. Patsyhagen on January 14, 2018 at 12:01 pm

    How do i go about swapping any of my spares?

    • Luke Hearn on January 15, 2018 at 8:48 am

      Good morning, you can register for the Change Checker App and then use our Swap Centre for any spares that you may have. Details can be found here: http://www.changechecker.org Thanks Luke

  6. Tom Davies on January 13, 2018 at 3:30 pm

    Could you please put out a list of £5 coins and maybe other coins maybe old 50p coins and so on thus making coin collecting more interesting.

  7. John bethell on January 13, 2018 at 11:33 am

    Why not do one for circulated £5 like the list of coins published.

  8. Graham on January 13, 2018 at 10:46 am

    This is really interesting stuff, would it be possible to publish a picture of all the coins in order as well to make identifying them that little bit easier as a lot of people call them different names?

    • DavyH on February 1, 2018 at 9:41 pm

      Hi Graham

      There is a full list of all coins on the Royal Mint website, from the main page click on discover/uk coins/coin designs and specifications for each denomination . They are listed in date order with a picture of each coin. Hope this helps.

  9. Colin Newbury on January 13, 2018 at 9:52 am

    This is very interesting thank you .from a very old coin collector

  10. Alan on January 13, 2018 at 8:46 am

    Tom kitten is listed as 11 but it should be 13

  11. Roger Charlesworth on January 13, 2018 at 6:28 am

    I am surprised at the relative scarcity of Tom Kitten compared to Benjamin Bunny. I am basing on a set of mintage figures which I was given which may be suspect : 2017 : Peter Rabbit 20M. Tom Kitten and Jeremy Fisher 10M and Benjamin Bunny 5M. These are still massive compared to 2016 at Peter Rabbit, Squirrel Nutkin, Beatrix Potter and Mrs Tiggy at 5M and JPD at 2M. Why do the Mint DO this????

    • ray evason on January 24, 2018 at 10:00 pm

      Why does the 2016 50p shield coin not appear at the top of the rarity list?