In 2012, 29 50p coins were released to commemorate the London Olympics and millions rose to the challenge of collecting them all. For many, this marked the start of their interest in coins.
The Royal Mint now estimates that as many as 75% of the Olympic 50p coins have been removed from circulation by collectors, which is a testament to their popularity.
Do you own the rarest Olympic 50p?
Olympic 50ps have long been a favourite amongst collectors, but did you know that only 1,125,500 Football fifty pence pieces entered circulation? It’s definitely the rarest one to look out for and tops our chart as having the smallest mintage figures, which means it is even harder to find than the others.
Although the Football 50p narrowly holds the title of the rarest sport in the series, there were still over one million of those struck for circulation. To hold the honourable title as “rare”, we must look beyond the official Royal Mint circulation figures…
The withdrawn Aquatics ‘minting error’ Olympic 50p
The Aquatics 50p which we are familiar with today is actually a modified version which removed the waves passing over the swimmer’s face.
Despite the original coin being withdrawn from circulation and the design adapted – there are still a few out there.
Although the exact quantity of the original Aquatics design remains a mystery, we know it’s not unusual for these special coins to exchange hands for close to £1000… not a bad return on a 50p coin!
2009 Athletics Olympic 50p
In 2009, nine-year old Florence Jackson became the youngest person to design a coin for circulation in the UK. Her Athletics Olympic 50p design was the ultimate winner of a Blue Peter competition.
Although you may recognise this coin, you may not know that a rare version of this coin exists.When the competition winner was revealed, only 100,000 special edition Blue Peter coin packs were released with a 2009 dated coin – making it the only Olympic 50p without a 2011 date.
That makes this 2009 Athletics Olympic 50p more than twice as rare as the famous Kew Gardens 50p.
The rarest of the series
It is without doubt that the gold versions of each 50p remain the rarest of the collection.
Unfortunately for collectors, obtaining one of these is nearly impossible as only one gold version of each design was presented to the respective winning designer.
Aside from the precious metal content, their unique status and significance rank them as potentially the most valuable UK 50p coins in existence.
Is this the 30th Olympic 50p?
To the delight of many Olympic 50p collectors, in 2016 The Royal Mint issued a special 50p to wish Team GB success for the Rio Games.
The coin’s obverse features a swimmer with the Team GB logo, the Olympic rings and the inscription ‘TEAM GB’. Designed by Tim Sharp, the coin has been officially endorsed by Team GB and celebrates the spirit of British Olympians – a must have for all Olympic 50p Collectors.
Complete your 50p collection
Do you still have coins missing from your Olympic 50p collection?
With 25 days to go until the Olympic Games in Rio this Summer, the Royal Mint have released a coin that’s sure to excite the hundreds of thousands of people who collected the Sports 50p coins for the London 2012 Olympics.
This UK 50p coin has been released to wish Team GB success in Rio this summer.
The coin’s obverse design features a swimmer with the Team GB logo, the Olympic rings and the inscription ‘TEAM GB’. Designed by Tim Sharp, the coin has been officially endorsed by Team GB and celebrates the spirit of the British Olympians.
The 30th Olympic 50p
In the lead up to the 2012 Olympic Games, 29 million Olympic 50p coins were released into circulation across 29 different designs – 1 for each Olympic sport.
Remarkably the Royal Mint estimated that 75% of those coins were removed from circulation as collectors clamoured to complete the collection, with many coins like Football and Judo barely ever seen in your change today.
[read more about which Olympic 50p coins are the rarest]
The new Team GB coin will surely become known as the “30th Olympic 50p” and with so many established collectors, it seems certain that its release will be greeted with much excitement.
The 2016 UK Team GB 50p
If you can’t wait to find this coin in your change you can add the Brilliant Uncirculated Team GB 50p to your collection now.
The UK £5 coin is legal tender, but you won’t ever find one in your change. They were first issued in 1990 and are usually reserved for commemorating Royal occasions. But many others also commemorate significant British anniversaries, and they are a favourite among collectors because of their interesting and powerful designs. I’ve picked out my top five here.
In the build up to the New Year’s Eve in 1999 these coins were widely given as a souvenir of the historic moment we shared when the clock ticked over into the new millennium. Jeffrey Matthews captured this perfectly with his clock hands passing through Greenwich, positioned at midnight. A limited number of these £5 coins were struck at the Millennium Dome and bear a small Dome mintmark (circled). You can count yourself lucky if you’ve got one of these rarer and more valuable versions!
One of the greatest landmarks in British history, the Battle of Trafalgar was fought on 21st October 1805. The Royal Mint marked the bicentenary with two £5 coins. The first of these designs by Clive Duncan, shows Nelson’s flagship Victory leading the fleet into battle. HMS Victory is in service to this day as the flagship of the Commander-In-Chief, moored in Portsmouth dockyard.
The Entente Cordiale was a series of agreements between Brtiain and France which ended nearly a millennium of intermittent conflict between the two countries. To mark the centenary in 2004 the Royal Mint released this commemorative £5 coin. The reverse design by David Gentleman features an unusual and striking combined image of Britannia and her French counterpart, Marianne, to symbolise the bond between Britain and France.
In 1649, following the English Civil War and the subsequent execution of Charles I, the British monarchy was abolished and the kingdom became a republic with a new government presiding – the ‘Protectorate’ – led by Oliver Cromwell. This £5 coin issued in 2010 marks the 350th anniversary of the restoration of the monarchy under Charles II in 1660. The reverse design features a simplified version of Charles’ crown with the inclusion of oak leaves. Amidst the oak leaves the coin also features a rose and thistles representing England and Scotland respectively.
This is the Official Olympic £5 coin issued for London 2012, and aside from being a piece of Olympic memorabilia, what sets it apart from other £5 coins is that it was designed by a member of the public. The design was chosen as part of the Royal Mint’s nationwide competition open to art and design students in higher education. Saiman Miah’s creative idea features the iconic buildings of the London skyline and the River Thames within a central circle. The outer ring features pictograms in the style of a clock face, representing various sports at the London 2012 Games.
How many have you got in your collection?
Available in the Change Checker Shop
The £5 is the UK’s flagship coin, and we now have a limited number of £5 coins available in the Change Checker Shop
Click here to browse our full range.