A common query we’ve been hearing at Change Checker HQ comes from people asking about variations in their 12 sided £1 coins.
Having read David Groom’s fascinating articles in the April and May issues of Coin News, we’ve found the key facts which explain these variations, what to look for and why they might have occurred.
We know that of the 1.5 billion 12 sided £1 coins struck to replace the old round pound, roughly half a billion are dated 2016.
Of course, having such a high mintage figure must lead to varieties in design and quality of striking, however in the Coin News examination of just 40 randomly selected 12 sided £1 coins, an extraordinary number of varieties appeared…
Perhaps the most talked about variation with the 12 sided £1 is the milling on the edge of the coin, with ‘lefties’ being a common error in the milling process.
Groom’s article suggested four clear variations can be found on the obverse of the coin, including position of the design and text.
Groom also highlighted the four clear features of difference for the reverses of the new £1 coins.
One of the most common variations seems to be misalignment of the coins, particularly where the outer and inner sections do not align properly.
We have spoken before in our blog about the dual-dated £1 coins, with one such coin being valued at £3,000.
Groom also mentions that many examples of the 2016 pound coin have the date numbers very poorly struck, making the date hard to read.
Royal Mint trial coins
Trial coins are issued when new coin specifications are being tested, but they should not enter circulation.
These feature the words ‘The Royal Mint’ and ‘Trial Piece’.
Whilst there are clearly a number of variations to be found in the 12 sided £1 coins, Coin News suggests that these may arise from off centre striking, or be due to the different characteristics from the two metals of the bimetallic coin.
Auction sites such as eBay may have sellers claiming these as ‘error’ coins, with listed prices rising to hundreds or even thousands of pounds, but for us Change Checkers, finding these variations in our coins is what makes collecting that much more interesting.
Many of you have been in touch telling us about the difference in your 2016 and 2017 12 sided £1 coins. Have you spotted any of the above variations in your coins?
– Credit ‘Up close, the new 12 sided £1 coin’ – David Groom, Coin News, April and May 2018
Earlier this year, we announced the exciting news that the UK’s incredibly popular Beatrix Potter 50p coins are to be followed up by two new Paddington™ 50 pence coins.
It’s now with great anticipation that we can reveal the first Paddington coin has been officially released!
Celebrating the very British bear
The coins have been issued to celebrate the 60th anniversary of Paddington’s first adventure and this first design is based on the modern adaptation from the CGI-live action movie, featuring Paddington on his suitcase in front of the station and excitingly, one more Paddington 50p coin will also be released by The Royal Mint later this year and this coin will feature the bear waving a Union Flag outside Buckingham Palace.
Of course fans of the movie Paddington 2, will also remember a 50p coin playing an important part in his adventure.
Not the first Paddington coin…
Whilst this is not the first time Paddington has appeared on a coin, it is his first time appearing on official UK coinage.
The nation’s loveable bear has previously featured on 1 crown (25p) coins from both Isle of Man and Gibraltar – now listed for as much £30 on eBay.
Due to the popularity of these coins, and the whole new generation of collectors created by the Beatrix Potter 50ps, it is expected that these coins will be extremely sought-after by collectors and Paddington fans alike.
These coins will be available in Brilliant Uncirculated collector’s edition, with coloured Silver and even Gold versions also being made available.
Paddington at the Station 50p, now available to own!
You can now own the FIRST EVER UK 2018 Paddington 50p Coin in superior collector quality.
Today marks 20 years since the bi-metallic £2 coins were released into circulation. So to celebrate our much loved £2 coins, we’ve taken a look back at the history of the £2 coin.
£2 coins have been in circulation since 1986, when a commemorative coin was issued to mark the XIII Commonwealth Games. Although these coins are legal tender, they were never common in everyday circulation.
Following a review of the United Kingdom’s coinage, the decision was made that a general-circulation £2 coin was needed and so the new bi-metallic coin was introduced on the 15th June 1998.
This was the first time bi-metallic coinage was used in the UK.
The first ‘Technology’ £2 coins were designed by Bruce Rushin using concentric circles to represent mankind’s technological evolution from the Iron Age at the centre, to the cogs and wheels in the first ring representing the Industrial Revolution. The next ring symbolises the computer age with a pattern derived from a silicon chip and the final outer ring represents the age of the Internet with a connecting web of lines.
The Queen with a Necklace £2
The first of these ‘Technology’ £2 coins were actually dated 1997 which earned the coin the nickname the ‘Queen with a Necklace’ £2 which has an enduring legacy in the collecting world. As the first bi-metallic £2 coins were issued in 1997, just prior to the Queen’s portrait change in 1998, this meant that the older portrait by Raphael Maklouf was only used for one year: 1997.
His version featured Queen Elizabeth II wearing a necklace, which is how the nickname was derived and they were snapped up by collectors on release in the belief they would go on to become a future rarity. Unfortunately this wasn’t the case and as it turned out, the coin had a mintage of nearly 14 million.
There are a few stories which crop up more often than others, and to help dispel some of the myths about the £2 coins you can find in your change, you can read our blog here.
This Technology design was used on £2 coins every year from 1997 until 2015 when it was replaced by Britannia. Britannia has a long standing history with British coinage having first appeared on a 1672 Farthing during the reign of Charles II. Antony Dufort’s modern interpretation of Britannia features on Britain’s highest denomination circulating coin, the £2, which was a very popular move from The Royal Mint.
What’s so special about the 2015 Britannia £2?
However, it wasn’t until 2016 when The Mint released the mintage figures for the 2015 coins that the real surprise was unveiled.
Only 650,000 of the 2015 date Britannia £2 coins had been stuck for circulation, making it one of the most scarce UK £2 coins ever! So scarce in fact that there were fewer of this coin than the England and the Scotland coins from the famous 2002 Commonwealth Games series.
The UK 2015 Britannia £2 Coin
Own one of the most-scarce circulating £2 coins ever issued
This first-year 2015 £2 Britannia is already one of the most-scarce circulating £2 coins ever issued with just 650,000 coins passing through banks and cash centres.
That places it third equal in the all-time low mintage charts!