2020 marks 80 years since the ‘Miracle of Dunkirk’ – one of the greatest turning points of the Second World War.

Known as Operation Dynamo, in 1940 over 300,000 Allied soldiers were evacuated from the beaches and harbour at Dunkirk, France in over 800 hastily assembled vessels.

80 years on, this significant anniversary has been commemorated with the Isle of Man Dunkirk £2 Pair.

2020 Isle of Man Dunkirk £2 Pair

This stunning £2 coin pair features the Isle of Man Steam Company packet ship, the SS Mona’s Isle, rescuing soldiers at Dunkirk.

Mona’s Isle was the first non-military ship to leave Dover for Dunkirk during the evacuation and the first to complete a round trip, rescuing a total of 2,634 troops.

As a perfect tribute to SS Mona’s Isle and the bravery of her crew, this BRAND NEW £2 coin pair has been issued by the Isle of Man.

What’s more, JUST 3,000 of each design will be entering circulation on the Isle of Man – making these coins particularly hard to come by as i’m sure collectors on the island will be quick to snap these up for their collections!

To secure the Isle of Man Dunkirk £2 Pair in Brilliant Uncirculated quality, click here >>

To celebrate these brand new releases, we’re taking a look back at the other coins issued to commemorate the Second World War…

2020 The End of the Second World War £5

2020 UK 75th Anniversary of the End of the Second World War £5

2020 marked 75 years since the end of the Second World War and in commemoration this brand new UK £5 coin was issued, honouring the struggles and sacrifices made to achieve lasting peace.

Designers Matt Dent and Christian Davies have included the words ‘WAR’ and ‘PEACE’ on the reverse of this coin.

This £5 coin’s design was said to be inspired by stone war memorials, paying tribute to the millions of lives lost during the six years of conflict.

2020 UK Victory in Europe £2

2020 UK Victory in Europe £2

Issued by The Royal Mint, this 2020 VE Day £2 features a woman holding a newspaper aloft in a crowd of celebrating people, set against a backdrop of the word VICTORY.

2020 marks a particularly poignant anniversary as we celebrate 75 years since Victory in Europe Day. Many celebrations had been scheduled to mark this joyous occasion, including rescheduling the Early May Bank Holiday to the 8th, but were not able to take place due to the pandemic.

In place of the big parties that were planned, people took to their doorsteps to sing and raise a glass over their fence with their neighbours!

The edge inscription of this coin reads ‘JUST TRIUMPH AND PROUD SORROW’ which is incredibly fitting for a coin which marks such a historic anniversary.

2019 75th Anniversary of D-Day £2

2019 UK D-Day Landings £2

D-Day was the largest seaborne invasion in history. It took place on 6th June 1944 and began the liberation of German-occupied France during WWII, laying the foundations of the Allied victory.

Designed by renowned Royal Mint engraver, Stephen Taylor, this coin was issued in 2019 to mark the 75th anniversary of the D-Day landings. It features arrows each pointing across the English Channel to Normandy. Each arrow also has one of the code names used for each of the beaches where Allied troops landed – Utah, Omaha, Gold, Juno, and Sword.

This £2 coin is a timeless tribute to the thousands of Allied troops who fought tirelessly and sacrificed their lives to make the Normandy landings a success.

1994 UK D-Day Landings 50p

1994 UK D-Day Landings 50p

On 6th June 1944 a mighty alliance of British, American and Commonwealth armed forces crossed from England to Normandy and began assault on German forces.

It was the largest seaborne invasion in history and began the liberation of German-occupied France, laying the foundations for the Allied victory of World War Two.

timeless tribute to the thousands of Allied troops who fought tirelessly in the War, this 50p coin was issued in 1994 to commemorate 50 years since D-Day.

2015 UK Battle of Britain 50p

2015 UK Battle of Britain 50p

On 6th June 1944 a mighty alliance of British, American and Commonwealth armed forces crossed from England to Normandy and began assault on German forces.

It was the largest seaborne invasion in history and began the liberation of German-occupied France, laying the foundations for the Allied victory of World War Two.

timeless tribute to the thousands of Allied troops who fought tirelessly in the War, this 50p coin was issued in 1994 to commemorate 50 years since D-Day.


Will you be adding the 2020 Isle of Man Dunkirk £2 Pair to your collection? Let us know in the comments!


Secure the 2020 Isle of Man Dunkirk £2 Pair to your collection

Secure the Isle of Man Dunkirk £2 Pair by clicking here >>

We only have a limited stock available for Change Checkers, so don’t miss your chance to secure this pair for your collection for just £16.99 (+p&p).

Add the 2020 Isle of Man Dunkirk £2 Pair to your collection here >>

2020 marked the 75th anniversary of Victory in Europe Day, and the official end of the Second World War.

Following the Allies’ acceptance of Nazi Germany’s unconditional surrender on the 8th May 1945, the war in Europe had finally come to a close after a long five years of conflict.

Most UK collectors will be familiar with the United Kingdom 75th Anniversary of Victory in Europe Day £2 coin issued earlier this year to commemorate the historic event.

However, Allied Nations across the globe have been commemorating 75 years since the end of the Second World War and this important anniversary has been marked with unique coin issues from some of the world’s most renowned Mints.

Coins issued by the Netherlands, Canada, France, and Belgium, in addition to the UK £2, have been brought together for the first time in the remarkable 75th Anniversary of VE Day Allied Nations Coin Pack. 

75th Anniversary of VE Day Allied Nations Coin Pack

Featuring FIVE carefully chosen commemorative coins from world renowned Mints and including The Royal Mint’s 75th Anniversary of VE Day £2 coin as the centrepiece, this limited edition Commemorative Coin Pack has been released JUST for Change Checkers.

The coins included with this extraordinary set are:

United Kingdom £2

2020 UK Victory in Europe £2

This brand new United Kingdom £2 coin by Royal Mint designer Dominique Evans features a woman holding a newspaper aloft in crowd of celebrating people, set against a backdrop of the word ‘VICTORY’. The edge inscription reads ‘JUST TRIUMPH AND PROUD SORROW’.

Canada $2

2020 Canada Victory $2

As a tribute to the fallen and a promise to never forget, Canada have issued a commemorative $2 coin marking the 75th anniversary of the end of the Second World War. This coin re-creates the iconic Victory Nickel design on a brand new $2 coin.

Belgium 2.5 Euro

2020 Belgium 2.5 Euro

The Royal Mint of Belgium issued this 2.5 Euro coin designed by Luc Luycx to show Europe lit with fireworks in honor of this 75th anniversary. The reverse shows the newly liberated Brussels on 4th September 1944.

This coin is limited to a maximum circulation of 50,000 pieces worldwide.

Netherlands 5 Euro

Although part of the Netherlands had already been liberated in 1944, it wasn’t until the 5th May 1945 that the whole of the Netherlands was allowed to live in freedom. This 5 Euro is the official commemorative coin to mark such an important moment in history and has been designed by artist Marijke van Warmerdam.

Only 15,000 Silver-Plated pieces are available worldwide!

France 2 Euro

Renowned French army officer and statesman, Charles de Gaulle led the Free French Forces against Nazi Germany in World War II. This 2 Euro coin features two profiles of de Gaulle as both the revered army general during the war, and as President of France during his second term. A Lorraine cross also features on the design as the symbol of free France, chosen by General de Gaulle.


All of these incredible coins come presented in the Change Checker 75th Anniversary of VE Day Coin Pack. Which one is your favourite? Let us know in the comments below!


Secure the Limited Edition 75th Anniversary of VE Day Coin Pack to your Collection Today!

Secure the 75th Anniversary of VE Day Coin Pack here for £45 (+p&p) >>

Due to the difficulty of sourcing these coins, we have only a limited number of these extraordinary packs available!

To ensure you don’t miss out on this special anniversary year, please secure your Change Checker 75th Anniversary of VE Day Allied Nations Coin Pack here >>

The ‘heads’, or obverse, side of a coin has depicted the image of a monarch or ruler for thousands of years.

However, the nature of these images have changed over the centuries. From the Ancient Greeks to Queen Elizabeth II, in this blog we guide you through the differing historic heads of uk coinage.

Ancient Greece and Rome

An Ancient Greek coin depicting the portrait of Zeus.

The coins of ancient Greece set the design template for the circulating coins that we use today in the UK!

On one side, their coins show a portrait of the symbol of national sovereignty and on the other side, we see something that resembles the nation.

Coins of ancient Greece and Rome were provided for city states and depict images of iconic leaders and the gods that protected them.

Roman coins depict the faces of the leaders of the empire, including Emperor Honoria.

Anglo-Saxon and Medieval Period

Medieval coin featuring the portrait of Edward III

The AngloSaxon period in Britain spans approximately the six centuries from 410-1066AD.

In the ninth century The Royal Mint struck a silver penny of Alfred the Great at the time of the resettlement of London after its first occupation by the Vikings. 

The coin would have been struck by hand and the design showcases the rigid markings that would have come as a result of hand tools.

The Renaissance and the Tudors

Tudor coin featuring the portrait of King Henry VIII

The Sovereign is undoubtedly one of the most impressive coins struck by The Royal Mint.

In 1489, Henry VII ordered a new coin of gold. The coin surface was large, enabling the engraver to include decorative details. It allowed for more detailed portraits of monarchs.

The portrait on this coin is of the crowned King Henry VIII.

Charles II

Gold coin featuring the reversed portrait of Charles II

When Charles II was restored to the throne, he needed to assert his royal authority and to show a clear break from the rule of Oliver Cromwell.

It’s been suggested that the tradition of monarchs facing in the opposite direction to their predecessor on coins, dates back to Charles II when he wanted coins under his reign to be different from that of Cromwell.

Victoria

Queen Victoria Gothic Florin

Despite reigning for 64 years, there were few coinage portraits of Queen Victoria, with one being favoured for 50 years.

For 50 years the ‘Young Head’ effigy of Queen Victoria featured on UK coinage this classically styled portrait was reinterpreted several times, with each effigy designed to portray the queen as she aged.

Queen Elizabeth II

2020 dated 50p featuring the fifth portrait of HM Queen Elizabeth II

Five portraits of Her Majesty The Queen have been used on UK coins since her accession to the throne in 1952.

The Queen’s first portrait, by Mary Gillick, shows her wearing a wreath in the style of many British coins struck between the seventeenth and early nineteenth centuries. This portrait remained on UK coins up until decimalisation, when Arnold Machin’s new portrait of The Queen was used (pictured above).

The effigy selected for use from 1985 was prepared by the sculptor Raphael Maklouf, in which she is depicted wearing a necklace and earrings.

By her fourth portrait, designed by Ian Rank-Broadley, a greater degree of realism was used. It shows The Queen in her sixth decade, her crowned head filling the coin’s surface. 

The fifth and most recent portrait of The Queen is by Royal Mint designer Jody Clark. This is arguably the first UK coin to introduce elements of personality with a hint of a smile. Clark is the first Royal Mint employee in over 100 years to design a UK definitive coin portrait.


So now you know how the portraits on our coins have changed over the years, which portrait is your favourite? Comment below!


Secure the History of Britain in Coins Collector’s Album to your collection!

The ‘History of Britain in Coins’ Collector’s Album is an exciting way to collect ten specially selected UK 50p and £2 coins that Change Checker consider as some of the most historically interesting circulating coins of the decimal era!

Click here to secure your History of Britain in Coins Collector’s Album for just £25.00 (+p&p) >>