It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas as Guernsey release a brand new set of Christmas Pantomime 50p coins!
These fantastic new coins feature designs based on five beloved Pantomimes which are sure to take you to a whole new world as you experience the magic of the theatre brought to life on a 50p coin.
Complete BU Set
Whilst 4,000 of each design will be entering circulation, they will only be released in Guernsey and you can bet your bottom dollar that any lucky Guernsey Change Checkers coming across these coins will be sure to hold on to them.
Unfortunately we don’t all have a Fairy Godmother who can wave a magic wand and make these coins appear in our UK change (but wouldn’t that be nice!).
However, the complete set is now available to purchase in Brilliant Uncirculated quality here.
Authorised by the Guernsey Treasury and fully approved by Her Majesty the Queen, the set includes some of the most loved pantomime themes:
- Snow White
- Jack and the Beanstalk
- Dick Whittington
Silver Proof Set
But that’s not all… As if by magic, these coins have been brought to life in vibrant colour for the Silver Proof Pantomime 50p coin set.
Each beautiful coin is struck from Solid Silver and features selective colour printing to capture the fun of the theatre.
Only 2,019 of the Guernsey Silver Christmas Pantomime 50p sets are available and we all know how quickly Silver 50p coins sell out – the Silver Gruffalo 50p sold out within the first day of launch and had an edition limit of 25,000!
The first Guernsey Christmas coins
Did you know that Guernsey has never released a Christmas coin before? This is bound to make these Christmas Panto 50ps particularly special for coin collectors.
However it’s fair to say that Christmas themed coins make an envious addition to anyone’s collection, with the numerous festive 50ps from the Isle of Man proving to be incredibly popular.
One of the most-loved Christmas themes to feature on a coin has got to be the Snowman.
In 2003, the first coin to feature the Snowman was issued by the Isle of Man and had a tiny mintage of just 10,000.
Although not many of these coins are available on the secondary market, if you did want to add one to your collection, you’d be looking at parting with a minimum of £200!
The Snowman has since featured on a number of Isle of Man Christmas coins, and even made his first appearance on a UK coin last year.
Just 20,000 issued for circulation
With such a wonderful Christmas theme and the fact that just 4,000 of each Panto 50p will initially be released into circulation in Guernsey, these coins are sure to follow in the Snowman’s footprints and be incredibly sought-after.
But it’s not just the theme which makes these coins so special…
Mintage figures for Isle of Man 50ps have never exceeded 30,000, and as the new Guernsey coins have a combined mintage of just 20,000 I’m sure you’ll agree that they are bound to be hugely collectable!
Guernsey mintage figures are known for being much smaller than the UK, which is down to their much smaller population of just over 63,000.
Vote for your favourite!
Pantomime has a long theatrical history and is especially popular during the festive period. So now it’s time to get the show started and celebrate with the fantastic new Christmas Pantomime 50p set from Guernsey.
We’d love to hear which of these coins is your favourite, so let us know by voting in the poll below!
Secure your Brilliant Uncirculated Christmas Pantomime Set
Celebrate the Christmas season with five brand new Brilliant Uncirculated Pantomime 50ps from Guernsey.
With just over a month to go until the official 50th anniversary of the 50p coin, celebrations have now hit Jersey and Guernsey as the British Crown Dependencies mark this monumental numismatic milestone.
As the world’s first seven-sided coin, the 50p caused quite a stir when it was first issued in 1969, however it has since become one of the most popular and highly collected coins in circulation, both across Britain and its Crown Dependencies.
To celebrate the 50th Anniversary, a unique pair of Jersey and Guernsey 50p coins have been specially re-issued this year.
This set includes re-issued versions of the 1969 Ducal Cap 50p from the Bailiwick of Guernsey and the 1969 Coat of Arms from the Bailiwick of Jersey. These were the first 50p coins issued in the British Crown Dependencies and the pair have now been re-struck with the 2019 year date in Brilliant Uncirculated quality for collectors.
Whilst Jersey and Guernsey coins aren’t legal tender in the UK, they have a history of becoming highly collectable due to their low mintage figures…
Guernsey 50p Mintage Figures
Two definitive 50p coin designs have been issued in Guernsey since decimalisation – The Ducal Cap and Freesia Flowers.
The 1969 Ducal Cap 50p has been re-issued in the smaller specification for the 50th Anniversary of the 50p.
Anthony Wagner’s design features the Ducal Cap of the Duke of Normandy on the reverse.
Unlike UK coins, the obverse of the Guernsey Freesia Flowers 50p feature the Guernsey Coat of Arms, which includes three lions next to Queen Elizabeth II’s portrait. This makes the 50p particularly distinguishable.
Whilst Guernsey coins aren’t legal tender in the UK, they do turn up in our change from time to time. And if you’re lucky enough to come across one, make sure you check to see if you’ve been able to find Guernsey’s rarest definitive 50p – the 1987 Freesia Flowers.
A tiny 5,000 Freesia Flowers 50ps were released in 1987 – that means there’s only enough for roughly 8% of the population of Guernsey to own one of these coins each!
Jersey 50p Mintage Figures
Two definitive 50p coin designs have also been issued in Jersey since decimalisation – the Shield and Grosnez Castle.
The 1969 Shield 50p has been re-issued in the smaller specification for the 50th Anniversary of the 50p.
George Kruger Gray’s design features three lions on a shield on the reverse. The obverse features Arnold Machin’s portrait of Her Majesty the Queen.
Again, these coins aren’t legal tender in the UK, so if you do find one in your change it would have found its way to you by accident, perhaps due to a holiday maker spending it by mistake.
Whether you find yourself checking your change in Jersey or the UK, you’ll want to keep a watchful eye on any Grosnez Castle 50ps that you might be lucky enough to find, as one year in particular is very rare…
Just 10,000 Grosnez Castle 50ps were issued in 2003 – compare that to the 23,583,000 Britannia 50ps released in the UK in 2003 and you’ll appreciate just how rare this coin really is!
Have you been lucky enough to come across any Jersey or Guernsey 50ps, either in circulation in the UK or when you’ve been on holiday to the British Isles? And will you be securing the special 50th Anniversary pair to mark this milestone moment?
Own the BRAND NEW 50th Anniversary of the 50p Pair
This unique pair of 50p coins includes Jersey and Guernsey’s first year of issue designs 50ps from 1969 – re-issued with the 2019 year date!
Coins from Crown dependencies and overseas British territories can sometimes make an unexpected appearance in our change.
They are identical in size, shape and weight to UK denominations (bar the new 12 sided £1) which means they often find their way into tills and vending machines undetected.
Finding one in your change can be an annoyance on one hand as technically the coins are not legal tender in the UK. On the other hand, from a collecting point of view, new and interesting designs are always a bonus!
Mintage figures for British Isles coins are very hard to track down, but we’ve managed to get hold of the definitive mintage figures for Guernsey to show you which are the rarest coins you should be looking out for.
Guernsey Definitive 50p Coin Mintage Figures
Guernsey’s Definitive 50p Coins
Two different definitive 50p designs have been issued on Guernsey coinage between 1969 and 2012 – the Ducal Cap and Freesia 50p coins.
The first 50p design released in Guernsey, the Ducal Cap, was issued six times between 1969 and 1984, with each coin having a mintage of 200,000.
The coin features an image of the Ducal Cap of the Duke of Normandy on the reverse and the Guernsey Coat of Arms on the obverse, which includes three lions instead of Queen Elizabeth II’s portrait. This makes the 50p particularly distinguishable.
Whilst the Ducal Cap 50ps have a fairly high mintage figure considering the size of Guernsey’s population (just 62,307 as of 2018), the most common Guernsey 50p is actually the 1997 Freesia design with a mintage of 1,044,000.
The Freesia 50p features the Guernsey Freesia Flowers on the reverse and the portrait of Queen Elizabeth II on the obverse. There is also a small Guernsey Coat of Arms on the obverse of the coin, which acts like a Guernsey mint mark and makes the Guernsey 50p stand out when compared to typical UK 50p coins.
Mintage figures for the Freesia design vary considerably, with the rarest coin issued in 1987 actually only having a mintage of 5,000. Mintage figures for the UK Britannia 50p were also low in 1987, as this coin had a mintage of 88,659, whereas the definitive 50p is normally issued in the millions. However the Guernsey Freesia Flowers 50p is still over 17 times rarer than it’s UK counterpart for 1987.
The most common Guernsey 50p, the 1997 Freesia Flowers has a mintage of 1,044,000, however this is still lower than the rarest UK definitive 50p (2017 Royal Shield), which has a mintage of 1,800,000.
Guernsey Definitive £2 Coin Mintage Figures
Guernsey’s Definitive £2 Coin
The first definitive Guernsey £2 coin design was actually dated 1997, but was only included in brilliant uncirculated and proof coin sets.
It was in 1998 that the first of the Guernsey £2 coins were issued in to general circulation, featuring the definitive Flag design.
As the first year of issue for the first bi-metallic coin, you’d expect the mintage for this to be high, however only 150,000 of these coins were struck in 1998. This makes the 1998 £2 Guernsey’s most common definitive £2 in circulation, but when compared to the UK’s most common £2 (1998 Technology design) which had a mintage of 91,110,375, you realise just how rare these Guernsey coins really are!
This design has remained the same since its introduction, however the mintages figures for subsequent years were drastically lower, with the rarest coin being released in 2012 with a mintage of just 5,250. Comparatively, the UK’s definitive £2 coin (Technology design) issued in 2012 had a mintage of 3,900,000 – that’s over 700 times more than the definitive coins issued in Guernsey that year!
Although £2 coins were issued in Guernsey in 1991, 1993, 1994 and 1995, these were actually commemorative crown size coins, not issued for circulation and so we do not have these figures. At that time The Royal Mint manufactured Guernsey’s commemorative coins, creating a crown size denomination from the £2 coin.
Guernsey Definitive £1 Coin Mintage Figures
Guernsey’s Definitive £1 Coins
Three different definitive £1 designs have been issued in Guernsey since 1981 – the Lily, HMS Crescent and Finance Motif.
As you can see from the chart above, the Finance Motif design issued from 1985 – 2012 has dramatically lower mintage figures and has been issued more frequently.
The coin features the finance motif on the reverse, but as with most Guernsey coins, it is the unusual obverse that makes it stand out. The obverse features the portrait of Her Majesty the Queen facing right, with a small Guernsey Coat of Arms on the left.
In 1981, Guernsey issued the Lily £1. Similar to the Ducal Cap 50p, the Lily £1 features the Guernsey Coat of Arms on the obverse, which includes three lions instead of Queen Elizabeth II’s portrait. The reverse of the design features a lily flower, the national flower of Guernsey.
200,000 Guernsey Lily £1 coins were issued in 1981, making it the second most common £1 on Guernsey.
In 1983, Guernsey issued the HMS Crescent £1.This coin also features the Guernsey Coat of Arms on the obverse, but the reverse features an engraving of the HMS Crescent by Robert Elderton.
This is the most common Guernsey £1, with a mintage of 267,000. But, compared to the most common UK £1 (2015 Royal Arms) which has a mintage of 129,616,985, mintage figures for the HMS Crescent £1 are incredibly low. Almost 500 times lower than the most common UK £1!
Although the 1981 Lily and 1983 HMS Crescent designs were only issued for one year each, they both have much higher mintage figures than the Finance Motif issued prior to these designs.
In fact, if you were to add up the mintages for every year the Finance Motif was issued (bar an unusually high year in 2001) the figure would still be lower than the 1981 Lily and 1983 HMS Crescent coins.
The rarest Guernsey £1 is the 1990 Finance Motif, with a mintage of just 3,500. We know that British Isles mintage figures are much lower than the UK due to the smaller population, however when you compare this to the rarest UK £1 which is the 2011 Edinburgh £1 with a mintage of 935,000, the difference is staggering! In fact, Guernsey’s rarest £1 is actually more than 250 times rarer than the Edinburgh £1!
Lack of Demand for New Definitive Coins
From 2012 to present there have been no definitive coins released on Guernsey, and we must assume that this is due to the fact that there just isn’t the demand for them. As previously mentioned, the small population of just 62,307 means that there are less coins issued on the British Isles.
Has any Guernsey coinage found its way into your pocket and have you been lucky enough to find any of the rarer coins? Let us know in the comments below.
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