Complete the shield!

It’s been more than 10 years since Matthew Dent redesigned the UK’s definitive coins to create the Royal Shield of Arms design, but there are still some people who don’t actually realise that these coins can be pieced together to complete the shield.

Dent’s design was chosen by The Royal Mint Advisory Committee following a public competition which saw over 4,000 designs submitted. “I felt that the solution to The Royal Mint’s brief lay in a united design,” he explained. “United in terms of theme, execution and coverage over the surface of the coins.”

Using all the coins from the 1p to the 50p and fitting them together like a jig-saw, the complete shield is revealed, as seen on the £1 coin design issued from 2008 until 2015.

Of course, the old round pound has now been replaced by the 12 sided £1, featuring the Nation’s of the Crown design. But, the definitive 1p, 2p, 5p, 10p, 20p and 50p shield coins can still be found in your change, meaning the Royal Shield can still be collected and completed.

In fact, I bet if you were to check the change in your pocket right now, you’d be surprised by how much of the shield you’ll already be able to piece together!

So why not try collecting the shield, and if you’d like to give yourself even more of a challenge, how about collecting the whole shield for each year, starting with the coins issued in 2008.

As we’ve now come to the 10th anniversary of these coins, perhaps there will be a re-design on the horizon? If the reverse of our definitive coins were redesigned, what design would you like to see on the new coins?



Complete the shield with the Royal Arms Shield Collector Card!


Designed to fit neatly into your Change Checker Album, this Collector’s card allows you to assemble the Royal Arms Shield by simply using your loose change.

Click here to secure yours and start your shield collection today >>


  1. Helen Bate on January 12, 2019 at 12:53 pm

    Time to restore the original images. I hate the design, and I would imagine that tourists find them totally confusing.

  2. Enrique on January 9, 2019 at 8:11 am

    First time I saw the coins I thought it was a very nice design…. But after 10 years I am still explain the people the meaning and the reason behind that particular design. I believe it is a time to change since there is no a 1 pound coin that shows the full imagen of the puzzle.

  3. Robert Walpole on January 8, 2019 at 6:01 pm

    I certainly do not think these coins should be changed in the near future. There are already too many new coins being issued and it is becoming impossible to collect them in your change. I know several coin collectors in the Hastings, East Sussex area, and in Shepperton in Surrey, and in High Wycombe, Hertfordshire and none of us have so far seen any of the “new” A to Z 10p pieces, so the chances of collecting all 26 would appear to be negligible.

  4. Leslie John Hamilton on January 8, 2019 at 3:34 pm

    Very nice to know. I’ve never looked at the coins in this way.
    Regards from germany

  5. Rookie on January 8, 2019 at 9:35 am

    I am one of those people who have been collecting all the coins with their different dates and never realised that they made up the shield. I would like to see the union jack on our coins and hope that Scotland stays with us.

    • Rachel Hooper on January 8, 2019 at 12:17 pm

      It’s amazing once you realise how they all fit together. The Union Jack is a great idea. I wonder what the next design will be.

    • Les kent on January 8, 2019 at 4:16 pm

      Well rookie do you collect all the decimal coins for ie the 50p & the £2 coins
      and do you collect the date runs .

  6. John Rimmer on January 8, 2019 at 9:08 am

    Don’t like the. They’re a graphic designer’s solution to a sculptural challenge.

  7. Steven on January 8, 2019 at 8:34 am

    Personally, I thought that the shield design on 1p to 50p coins would/should have been changed in 2016 when the new £1 coin was introduced. The £1 coin was the link for the rest of the coin designs and the jigsaw now seems irrelevant as there is no coin with the full design on it.
    That’s just my opinion and I’m sure there will be a mixture of agreement and disagreement with it, but at least there’s a valid (to me anyway) reasoning for it.

    • Rachel Hooper on January 8, 2019 at 9:19 am

      That’s a very good point Steven. I wonder how long it will be before the design does change.

      • Steve Lindsey on January 8, 2019 at 11:23 am

        Isn’t there there a train of thought that the bronze type coinage was going to be withdrawn maybe this is why the coinage hasn’t been changed my main problem is that one pence is the smallest denomination we have so how can fuel companies charge in tenths of one pence all fuel grades end in less than a penny example £117.99 per litre who gets the .01 as it’s always rounded up if we loose the bronze stuff fuel and most item will round up to the nearest 5 p costing us all more