It’s time for the latest Scarcity Index update, your chance to discover the UK’s most sought after circulation 10p, 50p and £2 coins.
This information has been compiled using data from the Change Checker Swap Centre and presented in the easy-to-use indexes below, with arrows to signify how many places up or down a coin has moved since the last Scarcity Index update.
Where will the first King Charles III 50p rank?
Excitingly, the first circulating coin to feature King Charles III on the obverse – the Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II Memoriam 50p – entered the Scarcity Index for the first time in our previous update.
As this is only the second time a King Charles III 50p has featured in our Scarcity Index, it currently ranks as common. Despite entering circulation almost a year ago, the Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II Memoriam 50p will still be making its way into collections, and those who do find one in their change will no doubt be holding onto it.
Keep your eyes peeled for future Scarcity Index updates to see where the first King Charles III 50p will rank!
Haven’t found this coin in your change yet? Find out where in the UK you’re most likely to find one here >>
50p Scarcity Index
Whilst the latter half of the 50p index has remained fairly stable, there have been some huge movers in this latest update.
Climbing an impressive 14 places is the second coin in the Paddington 50p series – the 2019 Paddington at St Paul’s Cathedral 50p. The Paddington 50p series was incredibly popular with collectors, and inspired many younger people to start collecting. The Paddington at St Paul’s Cathedral 50p was even voted the second favourite coin in the series in a 2019 poll.
Another 50p that shot up the ranks is the Sir Arthur Conan Doyle 50p, which moved up a massive 15 places. This 50p has previously been sitting near the bottom of the Scarcity Index, making it one of the most common 50ps in circulation, however it looks like it could now be becoming more sought after among collectors.
There has also been movement amongst some of the Olympic 50ps, with the Fencing and Gymnastics 50ps both moving up 10 places. This puts them near the top of the index, which is usually reserved for some of the rarest 50ps in circulation.
Some less fortunate coins are the Mrs Tiggy-Winkle 50p which has dropped by 15 places, and the Roger Bannister 50p which fell 14 places.
If you’re new to collecting and want to find out more about circulation coins, you can check out our fact files here >>
Otherwise, keep reading to find out which 10ps and £2 coins you should be looking out for.
10p Scarcity Index
There has been quite a shuffle up on the A-Z 10p Scarcity Index, with all but 3 coins moving.
The biggest change since the last update is the previously ‘less common’ C for Cricket 10p, which has dropped 12 places. Also moving down the ranks are the E for English Breakfast 10p and the O for Oak 10p, which fell by 9 and 10 places respectively.
It’s not all bad news though, as the G for Greenwich Meantime 10p climbed 10 places and the K for King Arthur 10p rose by 8 places.
It’s worth remembering that this Index is only ranking the 10ps against each other, when really even the ones at the bottom of the list are still incredibly sought-after and even now (4 years on since they were last released) they are still the coins every collector seems to talk about!
And that’s no surprise, as a maximum of JUST 304,000 of each A-Z 10p design entered circulation across 2018 and 2019 – making them some of the rarest coins out there. So make sure you keep your eyes peeled for them in your change!
£2 Scarcity Index
We tend to see less movement on the £2 index due to the fact less coins have entered circulation in recent years – as you can see from the bottom of the latest £2 Index. However, it’s worth remembering just how rare and collectable some of these coins are, even after being in circulation for so many years.
As always, the Commonwealth Games N. Ireland £2 remains at the top of the list due to it’s incredibly low mintage of just 485,000.
The 2014 Trinity House £2 has recovered the 7 places it fell by in the last update, putting it back into the ‘less common’ category. However, the Darwin £2 and the Gunpowder Plot £2 have both gone down by 6 places. This could be due to people holding onto their Gunpowder Plot £2 during Firework Night, meaning less swaps were raised for it.
Despite less £2s entering circulation, it’s certainly still worth holding onto any coins you can find, before they’re snapped up!
How your Scarcity Index works
Generally collectors have relied on 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.
What’s more, some designs are more hoarded than others by people who might not normally collect coins – for example the First World War £2 Coin series.
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. This allows Change Checkers to track the relative performance of the UK’s circulation coins.
How much are my coins worth?
The Scarcity Index doesn’t necessarily equate to value, but it is certainly a good indicator. For example, the Kew Gardens 50p coin commands a premium of up to 200 times face value on eBay and is unsurprisingly top of the 50p Index.
You can use our 6 point guide to help you determine a more realistic value for your coins.
What about £1 Coins?
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Don’t miss your chance to get ahead of the crowd and be one of the very first collectors to receive the latest UK new issue coins as soon as possible after their release.
The collecting community has been abuzz with excitement for new King Charles III coins, especially since the UK’s new circulating coinage set was released in October.
And so I’m delighted to give you all the updates we know so far about future King Charles III commemorative coins to look forward to.
Read on to find out what’s on the horizon from the UK’s latest Royal Proclamations and get ready to add these upcoming coins to your collecting wish list!
Upcoming 50p Releases
On the 13th October 2023, a Royal Proclamation was released announcing 5 new UK commemorative 50p coins coming soon.
For now, the full details and designs are still top secret, but we do have some clues as to what will appear on these coins:
- A depiction of a Tyrannosaurus Rex with the inscription “TYRANNOSAURUS CRETACEOUS”
- A depiction of a Stegosaurus with the inscription “STEGOSAURUS JURASSIC”
- A depiction of a Diplodocus with the inscription “DIPLODOCUS JURASSIC”
- A depiction of two athletes atop the union flag
- A depiction of the RNLI flag surrounded by a lifebuoy with the inscription “200 YEARS” and “1824 2024”
Following the release of the UK’s first ever dinosaur coins back in 2020, and the follow up series of Mary Anning’s Jurassic creatures in 2021, I’m sure collectors will be delighted to hear the news that another 3 dino 50ps are set to shake up the collecting community.
And, with beasts as big as this, you can bet these new 50ps are going to be roarsome!!
Sporting 50ps are historically popular among collectors. In fact, for many, the very start of their collecting passion goes back to the UK’s OIympic 50p series, released to celebrate London 2012. These 29 different 50p coin designs sparked a collecting frenzy across the nation and to this day remain some of the most sought-after 50ps in circulation.
Since then, we’ve been treated to a number of sporting releases, including 2 Team GB 50ps and 2 Commonwealth Games 50ps. As a new 50p is set to be released featuring athletes atop the union flag, we’re already looking forward to the opportunity to add another sporting 50p to our collections.
The fifth coin on the list represents the very first time a UK 50p has been released to celebrate the RNLI. As the inscription suggests, this will mark the 200th anniversary of the Royal National Lifeboat Institution – the charity that saves lives at sea.
Since 1824, the brave volunteers of the RNLI have answered the call to rescue and we now look forward to this upcoming release to commemorate their courage and dedication.
Upcoming £5 Releases
The Royal Mint have also announced an upcoming £5 coin series, celebrating 6 decades of Bond!
There’s no doubt that this theme is popular in the collecting community and I for one can’t wait to see what these new designs will bring.
For now though, the designs are top secret – so make sure you stay tuned for any further information…
Upcoming £2 Releases
As of yet, we have no news to bring of upcoming commemorative £2 coins, but as soon as we hear more we’ll be sure to update this blog and our social channels – so make sure you’re following us to stay in the know!
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I guarantee that most of you will have heard of The Lord of the Rings, or The Hobbit, but do you know who created these literary masterpieces?
J.R.R. Tolkien of course – and the legendary author has been honoured on the latest UK £2 coin!
An intricate design
The 2023 UK J.R.R. Tolkien £2 features a bespoke design by artist David Lawrence, featuring Tolkien’s trademark monogram, framed by an intricately detailed runic band. Also inscribed onto the reverse design are the years of his life 1892-1973 and the words ‘Writer, Poet, Scholar’, representative of his intellect and imagination.
The edge inscription of the coin reads ‘NOT ALL THOSE WHO WANDER ARE LOST’, a quote taken from Tolkien’s poem, ‘The Riddle of Strider’, which actually appears in The Fellowship of the Ring.
The ‘Father of Fantasy’
Often referred to as the ‘Father of Fantasy’, J.R.R. Tolkien’s iconic stories inspired a whole new generation of fantasy literature, helping shape the modern fantasy genre as we know it today. He’s perhaps best known for titles such as The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, which are considered some of the greatest fantasy books ever written.
The Lord of the Rings books have inspired countless games, tv shows and music, they’ve been translated into 38 different languages, and were of course adapted into 3 blockbuster films, which have a huge cult following.
Aside from his incredibly popular fantasy novels, Tolkien also published a number of other works, from scholarly essays to translations of Middle English. His literary legacy even continued after his death in 1973, with another cult favourite, The Silmarillion being published in 1977.
So, if you’re a fan of The Lord of the Rings, fantasy films or literature in general or you just appreciate beautifully detailed coins, the 2023 UK J.R.R. Tolkien £2 is definitely one to add to your collection.
To secure this new coin in superior brilliant uncirculated quality, protectively encapsulated in official Change Checker packaging, simply click here >>