Striking designs – A look at football themed UK coins

EURO 2024 kicks off today (14th June 2024), so we’ve taken a look back at some of the UK coins that have been issued to celebrate the beautiful game.

1996 Football Single Metal £2

The single metal Football £2 was issued in 1996 to celebrate England hosting the 10th European football championships.

Before 1997, £2 coins were struck from a single-coloured, nickel-brass and were mainly produced for collectors and reserved for very special occasions.

The reverse design resembles a football, and is accentuated by an unusual concave surface of the coin. The year of 1996 is prominent, and the sixteen small rings represent the teams who competed in the tournament. Only 5,141,350 1996 Football £2 coins were ever minted.

2011 Olympic Football 50p

In 2011, a year before London hosted the Olympic Games, 29 new 50p coins were issued, each representing a different Olympic sport.

The football 50p was possibly the most publicised of them all, as it features the hotly debated offside rule in the form of a simple diagram. Designer Neil Wolfson, a sports journalist by trade, chose an image which he felt would encapsulate the sport whilst also provoking discussion.

The Olympic Football 50p is also the rarest of the Olympic 50ps with a mintage figure of just 1,125,500.

2022 150th Anniversary of the FA Cup £2

To mark 150 years of the FA Cup, The Royal Mint issued this £2 coin in 2022. Designers Matt Dent and Christian Davies created a design featuring the famed FA Cup Trophy in the centre.

Ribbons on each side of the trophy represent the first staging of the Football Association Challenge Cup (1871-72) and the 141st season which marked the 150th anniversary (2021-22).

2023 Pride of England £5

In 2022, England won the Woman’s EURO 2022 after beating Germany 2-1. The following year in 2023, the team embarked on their biggest competition to date – the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup.

To celebrate the Lionesses and their successes, The Royal Mint struck this £5 coin in 2023. The reverse of the coin features the iconic ‘three lions’ emblem in a design by Norman Sillman.

The England team made it to the final of the 2023 World Cup, but unfortunately Spain took home the cup.

An honourable mention…

Although not technically a football coin, the 1997 Three Lions £1 does feature the heraldic three lions design which has become synonymous with English football, so we thought it was worth a mention!

The three lions date back to Richard the Lionheart (1189-1199) who used three golden lions on a scarlet background as a powerful symbol of the English throne.

The design of the 1997 £1, by Norman Sillman, was actually the original design that inspired the 2023 Pride of England £5.


Vote for your favourite football coin

We want to know which of these football themed UK coins is your favourite, so cast your vote below and come back on 14th July (the EURO 2024 final) for the results!


Kick off your football collection

If you’re missing either the 1996 Football £2 or the 2022 FA Cup £2 from your collection, you can secure the pair for just £25 (+p&p) here >>

First King Charles III Banknotes ENTER CIRCULATION!

The first banknotes featuring King Charles III entered circulation today (5th June 2024), here’s everything you need to know.

King Charles III Banknotes
Credit: Bank of England

Hot off the press

In November 2023, The Bank of England started printing new banknotes featuring King Charles III at a rate of 6 million in 24 hours. The delay in them entering circulation was apparently caused by machines such as self service tills not being able to recognise the new image and needing to be recalibrated.

King Charles III banknotes in production
Credit: Bank of England Flickr
King Charles III banknotes in production
Credit: Bank of England Flickr

The Bank of England’s chief cashier, Sarah John, said “There is a lot to do to ensure that machines used up and down the country can accept the banknotes. They all need to be adapted to recognise the new design, with software updates, and that takes months and months. Otherwise, we will be putting a banknote out there that people simply would not be able to use.”


A sustainable transition

Taking guidance from the Royal Household, the new banknotes will only be issued to replace worn or damaged Queen Elizabeth II notes, meaning both monarchs’ portraits will co-circulate for the foreseeable future.

There are approximately 4.7 billion Queen Elizabeth II banknotes currently in circulation, worth an estimated £82 billion, so don’t worry – they’ll still be accepted in shops as well as the new King Charles III notes.

This transition phase will minimise the environmental and financial impact of the change, in keeping with the King’s vision for a more sustainable future.

King Charles III’s portrait will now appear on the front of the notes, an image based on an engraving of a picture of His Majesty taken in 2013, however there will be no changes to the current reverse designs:

  • Winston Churchill (£5)
  • Jane Austen (£10)
  • JMW Turner (£20)
  • Alan Turing (£50)
King Charles III £5, £10, £20 and £50 banknotes
King Charles III £5, £10, £20 and £50 banknotes
Credit: Bank of England

Security Features

All denominations of the new banknotes share some of the same security features which you can use to verify the authenticity of the note.

Monarch’s portrait in a see-through window
A portrait of King Charles III is printed on the window with the denomination and ‘Bank of England’ printed twice around the edge.

Hologram Image Change
When tilting the note from side to side, the word within the hologram should change between the value of the note, ‘Five’, ‘Ten’, ‘Twenty’ or ‘Fifty’ and ‘Pounds’.

Silver foil patch
A silver foil patch contains a 3D image of the coronation crown.

Print Quality
The printed lines and colours on the note are sharp and clear, with no smudges or blurred edges. If you use a magnifying glass, you should be able to see the value of the note written in small letters and numbers below the monarch’s portrait.

Feel of polymer and raised print
The note is printed on polymer, a thin and flexible plastic. On the front of the note, you can feel the raised print on the words ‘Bank of England’ and in the bottom right corner.

Ultraviolet number
Under a UV light, the denomination number appears in bright green and red on the front of the note.

£5 features

Here are some security features specific to the £5 notes.

King Charles III £5 Note with security features
King Charles III £5 Note with security features

Colour changing border
When the note is tilted, a coloured border around the edge of the see-through window and the ‘£’ symbol inside the window will change from purple to green.

Green foil patch
On the other side of the silver foil patch showing the coronation crown, the £5 has a green foil patch featuring the word ‘BLENHEIM’.

£10 features

Here are some security features specific to the £10 notes.

King Charles III £10 Note with security features
King Charles III £10 Note with security features

Colour changing quill
When the £10 note is tilted, a coloured quill at the side of the see-through window will change from purple to orange.

Copper foil patch
On the other side of the silver foil patch showing the coronation crown, the £10 has a copper foil patch containing the letters ‘JA’ within an open book, representing Jane Austen.

£20 features

Here are some security features specific to the £20 notes.

King Charles III £20 Note with security features
King Charles III £20 Note with security features

A second see-through window
In the bottom right corner of the front of the £20 note, there is a second, smaller see-through window containing the number 20.

Purple foil patch
On the other side of the silver foil patch showing the coronation crown, the £20 has a purple foil patch containing the letter ‘T’ for JMW Turner.

£50 features

Here are some security features specific to the £50 notes.

King Charles III £50 Note with security features
King Charles III £50 Note with security features

A second see-through window
In the bottom right corner of the front of the £50 note, there is a second, smaller see-through window containing the number 50.

Hologram change
The £50 note has two gold foil squares on the front, and the images within should change between ‘50’ and the ‘£’ symbol when the note is tilted.

Red foil patch
On the other side of the silver foil patch showing the coronation crown, the £50 has a red foil patch containing the letters ‘AT’, paying tribute to Alan Turing who features on the note.


A closer look


Where can I find a King Charles III banknote?

Eventually, we’ll start to see King Charles III banknotes crop up in our cash, but as their introduction will be a gradual process, some collectors may not want to wait to get their hands on one.

King Charles III notes
King Charles III notes
Credit: Bank of England

The Bank of England are running a postal exchange service, where from 5th to 30th June 2024, you can send in your current or old series banknotes and they’ll return King Charles III banknotes to you in exchange. 

You can also visit The Bank of England counter at Threadneedle Street where they’ll only only be issuing new banknotes featuring King Charles III from 5th to 11th June 2024. From 12th June 2024, the Bank’s counter will revert to issuing Queen Elizabeth II banknotes only. 

Found one in circulation already? Let us know where in the comments!


Safely store your new banknotes

With the release of these new banknotes, now’s the perfect time to start your banknote collection, by owning the Change Checker Polymer Banknote Collecting Pack – with space to securely house all four of England’s polymer banknotes!

Secure yours for just £9.99 (+p&p) >>

The latest Isle of Man TT £2 coin hits the tracks!

The Isle of Man TT races, an annual tradition since 1907, return again this year. Riders and spectators from around the world will travel to the island for what’s been nicknamed ‘the most dangerous race in the world’.

It’s become somewhat of a tradition for the Isle of Man to issue coins to commemorate the TT races each year, with 2024 being no exception…

Add the 2024 Isle of Man TT £2 to your collection for just £12.99 (+p&p) >>

A winning design

This year, the Isle of Man TT £2 coin highlights Creg-ny-Baa – the infamous corner from the TT race course. The reverse design, by Glyn Davies, features a daring motorcyclist riding around Creg-ny-Baa.

This famous corner is home to the Creg-ny-Baa pub, which sits beside a grandstand that overlooks the race course, both of which also feature on the coin.

Reverse of the 2024 Isle of Man £2 in hand
Reverse of the 2024 Isle of Man £2 in hand

Since the passing of Queen Elizabeth II in 2022, Isle of Man coinage now features King Charles III on the obverse. Of course, the Official British Isles King Charles III effigy was also designed by Glyn Davies – meaning he’s responsible for both sides of this coin!

Both the obverse and reverse of the 2024 Isle of Man £2 have been designed by Glyn Davies

Did you know? Creg-ny-Baa translates to ‘rock of the cow’ in English, probably originating from a rock where cows scratched themselves.

Entering circulation

Previous Isle of Man TT coins have always been popular with both collectors and motor enthusiasts. This is due to their small mintages compared to their UK counterparts and the fact that they sometimes crop up in UK coinage. Although Isle of Man coins aren’t legal tender in the UK, there is a chance you could spot one in your change.

And excitingly, just 7,500 2024 Isle of Man TT £2 coins will enter circulation on the island. That’s half the circulating mintage of the 2023 Isle of Man TT £2!

So make sure you don’t miss out and add it to your collection in Brilliant Uncirculated quality >>

Numismatic history of the TT races

The first Isle of Man TT coin was a 50p issued in 1981, and a new TT coin has been released most years since. The TT 50ps, along with other denominations have proved incredibly popular amongst collectors and motoring enthusiasts alike, with some selling for over £700 on eBay!

Here are a few of our favourite Isle of Man TT coins.

2023

An Isle of Man TT £2 was issued in 2023 to mark the centenary of the Sidecar race being introduced to the TT races. This meant both racer and passenger could take part in the ‘Ultimate Road Race’. The design shows an incredibly detailed depiction of the Sidecar riding through Parliament Square on the Isle of Man.

15,000 of these coins entered circulation on the Isle of Man, meaning collectors and the general public had the chance to find one in their change! But there were many who couldn’t wait to get their hands on the 2023 Isle of Man TT £2 and our initial allocation sold out in just 24 hours!

2023 Isle of Man £2
2023 Isle of Man £2

2022

After a 2 year break due to the Coronavirus Pandemic, the TT races returned in 2022 and two new £2 coins were issued to celebrate.

One of the coins featured the iconic TT Grandstand which marks the start and end of the race. The other represented the TT race marshals, most of whom are usually volunteers or motorsports enthusiasts.

A Crown coin was also issued in celebration of the event. It featured the official TT logo in front of the race route map and a chequered flag background.

2019

In 2019, the Isle of Man released two £2 coins marking 112 years since the first TT race in 1907.

The reverse designs features legendary rider, Steve Hislop, racing the Tourist Trophy track.

Steve ‘Hizzy’ Hislop is an 11 time winner of the notorious Tourist Trophy races. His extraordinary racing career has cemented him as a hero of the TT mountain circuit.

2019 Steve Hislop Isle of Man TT £2 Coins
2019 Steve Hislop Isle of Man TT £2 Coins

2018

2018 Mike Hailwood Isle of Man TT £2 Coins
2018 Mike Hailwood Isle of Man TT £2 Coins

These coins were issued in 2018 to celebrate racing legend Mike Hailwood. 2018 marked 60 years since his first TT race and 40 years since his triumphant return.

Just 3,000 of each coin entered circulation on the Isle of Man and we saw unprecedented demand from collectors looking to add the coins to their British Isles collection.

1998

Another famous race that takes place annually on the island, is the Rally Isle of Man.

The Rally Isle of Man – previously known as The Manx Trophy Rally – was first held in 1963 and became a well known event in the British Open Rally Championship.

In 1998, the Isle of Man released the Isle of Man Car Circulation £2 coin featuring three old-style race cars on the track.

1998 Isle of Man Car Circulation £2 coin
1998 Isle of Man Car Circulation £2 coin

1981

1981 Joey Dunlop Isle of Man TT 50p
1981 Joey Dunlop Isle of Man TT 50P. Credit: eBay

The first Isle of Man TT 50p issued in 1981 features famous motorcyclist Joey Dunlop. 

Only 5,000 coins of this design were struck. Were you lucky enough to find this in your change on the Isle of Man? Let us know in the comments below!

Do you have any Isle of Man TT races coins in your collection? Let us know in the comments below!


Secure your 2024 Isle of Man TT £2

Secure your 2024 Isle of Man TT £2 for just £12.50 (+p&p) >>

Continue your Isle of Man collection

To celebrate 120 years since the FIRST EVER Manx Motor Race, a new set of five Isle of Man 50ps has also been issued, featuring five motor racing firsts.

Secure your History of Motor Racing BU Isle of Man 50p Set for just £37.50 (+p&p) >>