Posts Tagged ‘Two Pound Coin’

Why you should be collecting £2 coins

With some truly fantastic releases recently, the UK has fallen head over heels for the 50p, with many collectors focusing on hunting down these seven sided gems for their collection.

But whilst collectors are busy scouring their change to find the latest and greatest 50p releases, the £2 coin, it seems, has taken a bit of a back seat…

So why should you be collecting £2 coins?

In this blog, we’ll take a look at which rare coins should take pride of place in your collection, which potential error coins might be out there and we’ll also share with you our top three £2 coins to look out for.

Rare and Error Coins

With over 37 different UK £2 coin designs in circulation, it’s worth paying attention to the £2 coins in your change, as you never know when you might come across something extra special…

2002 Commonwealth Games NI £2

2002 Commonwealth Games Ireland - Why you should be collecting £2 coins
The UK’s rarest £2 in circulation

The 2002 Commonwealth Games England £2 Coin is officially the most scarce £2 coin in the UK, ranking as 100 on our Scarcity Index.

Four coins were released in 2002 to celebrate the Commonwealth Games and at first glance, you might struggle to spot the difference between them. They all feature the same running athlete trailing a banner behind. But each has a different cameo, representing each of the four constituent parts of the United Kingdom.

The fact that this coin is so hard to spot and has such a low mintage of just 485,500 means that the Commonwealth Games NI £2 is the holy grail of £2 coin collections.

2015 Britannia £2

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Antony Dufort’s modern interpretation of Britannia.

It wasn’t until 2016, when The Mint released the mintage figures for the 2015 coins, that collectors realised just how special the new definitive £2 coin was.

Only 650,000 of the 2015 date Britannia £2 coins had been stuck for circulation, making it one of the most scarce UK £2 coins ever issued! So scarce in fact that there were fewer of this coin than the England and the Scotland coins from the famous 2002 Commonwealth Games series.

This makes the 2015 Britannia £2 joint third scarcest £2 coin in circulation, alongside the Navy £2.

Inverted Effigy Britannia £2

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First discovered by a Change Checker, and later confirmed as a genuine error by The Royal Mint, this unusual strike appears on a handful of the 2015 Britannia £2 Coins.

The Royal Mint has accounted for the seemingly impossible misalignment of the Queen’s effigy as almost certainly the result of one of the dies working loose and rotating during the striking process”.

The result is that the Queen’s head is offset by around 150 degrees compared to the Britannia design on the reverse of the coin.

We analysed 5,000 circulation Britannia £2 coins and our results suggested that the Inverted Effigy may have affected as few as 1 in 200 of the coins struck – in other words around just 3,250 coins.

2015 Navy with Flag

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We already know the 2015 Navy is one of the rarest £2 coins with just 650,000 struck for circulation, however Change Checkers have speculated whether there are two different design variations…

The original Navy £2 design (left) shows the coin without any markings on the top right of the mast, but the coin on the right looks like it has a flying flag.

The Royal Mint strike up to 5 billion coins a year and from time to time debris can get caught between the die and the coin whilst striking. It just so happens that this bit of debris has caused the markings on these coins to look like a flying flag on the ship – fuelling speculation that two different variations were struck.

Whilst it doesn’t add any extra value to the coin, it’s certainly one to look out for and makes for interesting collecting.

2005 ‘Pemember, Pemember’ Gunpowder Plot £2 

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The edge inscription of the Gunpowder Plot £2 appears to be spelt incorrectly

The 2005 Gunpowder Plot £2 commemorates the 400th anniversary of Guy Fawkes’ failed assassination attempt on King James I, but the coin is more familiar to collectors for having a spelling mistake in the edge inscription. The timeless quote “Remember, remember the fifth of November” has been found with various combinations of Pemember, Pemembep, Novemebep and so on. The common factor here is the ‘R’ which appears as a ‘P’.

Sadly for collectors this is apparently not a striking error. The explanation from the Royal Mint is that the down-stroke of the R coincides with the milling around the edge, and as the coin has worn over time, the letter has become less defined. This categorical statement from the Mint means that any mark-up in price for a supposed ‘error’ is completely unjustified, and although it makes the coin more interesting, it is not the mistake which it is often perceived to be.

1997 Maklouf ‘Queen with a Necklace’ £2

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The Maklouf ‘Necklace’ £2 was only issued in 1997

The ‘Queen with a Necklace’ £2 has an enduring legacy in the collecting world. The very first bi-metallic £2 coins were issued in 1997, just prior to the Queen’s portrait change in 1998. This meant that the older portrait by Raphael Maklouf was only used for one year: 1997. His version featured Queen Elizabeth II wearing a necklace, which is how the nickname was derived.

When the portrait change was announced, the new £2 coins were snapped up by collectors believing them to be a future rarity. As it turned out, a mintage of nearly 14 million means the ‘Queen with a Necklace’ £2 is not one of the rarest coins in circulation. Nevertheless, with only one year of issue, it still holds an undeniable interest for collectors.

2007 Abolition of Slavery £2

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There is a misconception that there were two types of the Abolition of Slavery £2 coin struck for circulation. It is true that two versions of the coins exist – one has a textured finish whereas the other has a smooth finish and features the artist, David Gentleman’s initials (circled).

The key difference is that only the textured version was struck for circulation, and if you find one of the smoother types in your change, you have actually found a coin which has been taken out of a presentation pack. This makes it considerably rarer than the circulating version, so it is worth keeping rather than spending!

The Top Three £2 Coins to Collect

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When it comes to collecting, £2 coins are some of our favourites to look out for, but out of the rare and wonderful coins mentioned above, here are our top three £2 coins to collect.

1) It’s no surprise that the UK’s scarcest £2 coin in circulation should come in first place, but you’ll not only have to be very lucky to come across one, you’ll also have to be eagle eyed to spot the correct flag for the Commonwealth Games Northern Ireland £2 coin.

2) Coming in close second is the third scarcest £2 coin, but can you challenge yourself to see if you can find one with the ‘flag’ variation as mentioned above?

3) And as our third placed coin, the 2015 Britannia actually sits in joint third place as the UK’s scarcest £2 in circulation and our challenge to you is to try and find the inverted effigy of this coin too!

Check out how we got on with our own £2 coin hunt and all the fantastic designs we were able to find in a £500 bank bag:

The £2 coins that haven’t entered circulation…

You may have noticed a lack of 2017 coins in your change, as to date The Royal Mint haven’t confirmed if they will enter circulation.

This all depends on demand for specific denominations at the time as UK Banks and Post Offices may not request every denomination every year if there is already sufficient coin in circulation.

Based on The Royal Mint’s figures, we do know that no 2017 Britannia coins were struck for circulation. But there have been 13 other coins designs issued since 2017 that we are yet to find in our change, including:

  • Jane Austen
  • WW1 Aviation
  • Frankenstein
  • Armistice
  • RAF Badge
  • RAF Spitfire
  • RAF Vulcan
  • RAF Sea King
  • RAF Lightning
  • Captain Cook
  • Samuel Pepys
  • D-Day Landings
  • Wedgwood

All of these coins are available to purchase in Brilliant Uncirculated quality here, but we will of course be the first to update you as soon as we have more information on their potential release.

A Treasure Hunt

It can be quite a challenge tracking down every single £2 coin for a complete collection. Remember, if you’re struggling to find those last few coins in your change, you can source them online, in auctions, on Facebook coin groups and of course by swapping with like-minded collectors on our web app.


If you’re interested in coin collecting, our Change Checker web app is completely free to use and allows users to:

– Find and identify the coins in their pocket
– Collect and track the coins they have
– Swap their spare coins with other Change Checkers

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Sign up today at: www.changechecker.org/app

What’s your favourite £2 coin design of the year 2018?

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We’re on the hunt for the best Coin Design of 2018 as part of the 2018 Change Checker Awards and we need your help! With over 50 new coins released this year, we’ve decided to shortlist the coins by denomination and then determine one overall winner from the top 10p, 50p, £2 and £5 coins as voted by Change Checkers!

£2 Coins

Eight brand new £2 coins have been released this year, including a stunning 5 coin RAF series and the first coin in a 3 coin series of £2s commemorating intrepid explorer, Captain Cook.

But which 2018 £2 coin is your favourite?

Cast your vote now using the poll at the bottom of the page and find out more about the different £2 coins from 2018 below!

RAF Badge £2

RAF Centenary Badge 2018 - What's your favourite £2 coin design of the year 2018?

To mark the centenary of The RAF, The Royal Mint issued a commemorative £2 coin which is the first in the 2018 RAF series of five coins. The reverse features a design by Rhys Morgan of the Badge of the RAF – an eagle in front of a circle inscribed with the official motto ‘ Per Ardua Ad Astra’, which is Latin for ‘Through adversity to the stars’, with the Imperial Crown at the top.

RAF Spitfire £2

RAF Centenary Spitfire 2018 - What's your favourite £2 coin design of the year 2018?

Designed by  Richard and Neil Talbot, the second coin in the commemorative 2018 £2 coin series marking the centenary of the RAF features one of the most famous aircraft ever built, the Supermarine Spitfire, which first flew in 1936 and went on to contribute heavily to the ultimate victory of WWII.

RAF Vulcan £2

RAF Centenary Vulcan 2018 - What's your favourite £2 coin design of the year 2018?

The third coin in the commemorative 2018 £2 coin series marking the centenary of the RAF features a favourite across the Nation’s Air Festivals, the jet powered Vulcan. This impressive aircraft is instantly recognised for its sleek delta wing, as captured in Richard and Neil Talbot’s £2 coin design.

RAF Sea King £2

RAF Centenary Sea King 2018 - What's your favourite £2 coin design of the year 2018?

The fourth £2 coin in the series marking the centenary of the RAF was also designed by Richard and Neil Talbot and features the Sea King helicopter which entered service with the Royal Air Force in 1978, exclusively in a search and rescue role across six UK locations.

RAF Lightning II £2

RAF Centenary Lightning II 2018 - What's your favourite £2 coin design of the year 2018?

The final coin in the 2018 RAF series features the newest aircraft to the air force, the F-35 Lightning II. As a fifth-generation aircraft, the superior air capabilities of the Lightning II will make a potent mix with the Typhoon when it enters service in 2018 and has been beautifully captured by Richard and Neil Talbot on this £2 coin.

Captain Cook £2

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To mark the 250th anniversary of British explorer Captain James Cook’s Voyage of Discovery, The Royal Mint issued this historic £2 coin. The distinctive reverse was designed by Gary Breeze featuring the Stern of HM Bark Endeavour, Captain Cook’s famous ship, leaving Plymouth as the first in a three coin series that will be arranged together to reveal the full design.

Frankenstein £2

Change Checker 2018 Commemorative Coins Frankenstein - What's your favourite £2 coin design of the year 2018?

This £2 coin was issued by The Royal Mint to celebrate the 200th anniversary of the publication of Mary Shelley’s famous novel ‘Frankenstein’. The reverse of this gothic coin was designed by Thomas Doherty and features the words ‘Frankenstein’ in an electric gothic font and the edge inscription says ‘A SPARK OF BEING’.

Armistice £2

Change Checker 2018 Commemorative Coins Armistice - What's your favourite £2 coin design of the year 2018?

To commemorate the 100th anniversary of the end of WWI, The Royal mint have issued this 2018 coin which completes the set of commemorative £2 coins released from 2014-2018 to mark the centenary of the First World War. The reverse was designed by Stephen Raw and features the words ‘The truth untold, the pity of war’, from the Wilfred Owen poem Strange Meeting.

With such poignant and stunning designs to choose from, it’s certainly going to be hard work to pick a favourite, but we can’t wait to see which £2 coin will come out on top!

The winning £2 will then be entered into our Coin Design of the Year vote as part of the 2018 Change Checker Awards, alongside the top 10p, 50p and £5 coins from 2018 to determine which coin should be crowned the overall winner!

The voting has now closed and the results can be seen below:

2018 Two Pound vote results - What's your favourite £2 coin design of the year 2018?

It’s now time for you to vote for your overall winner, shortlisted from Change Checker’s favourite A-Z 10p, 50p, £2 and £5 coin of the year.

Click here to find out which coins made the top 4 and to cast your vote for the overall Coin Design of the Year 2018.

 


View our full range of CERTIFIED BU £2 coins here >>

 

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How much is my Charles Dickens £2 worth?

Could your Charles Dickens £2 really be worth a fortune?

Every keen collector knows that it is worthwhile paying close attention to the small details of your coins – it’s the only way you can ever hope to spot an error. However, it’s also important to know when you have a genuine rarity (and when you don’t). There are a few stories which crop up more often than others, and one of them is the elaborated value of the Charles Dickens £2. So hopefully this post will help dispel some of the myths about the coin.

The Charles Dickens £2 coin was issued by The Royal Mint in 2012 to commemorate the 200th anniversary of one of Britain’s most famous and beloved writers. The design features Dickens’ recognisable profile crafted from the titles of his most famous works and is a favourite amongst collectors.

But recently, a number of stories have been popping up regarding the ‘errors’ people have noticed, such as fading dots around the centre part, upside down edge lettering and misspelling of the edge inscription. In fact, some of these coins have even been listed on eBay for thousands of pounds, leaving Change Checkers wondering “how much is the Charles Dickens’ £2 coin actually worth?”

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The value of the Charles Dickens £2 coin is often elaborated on online market places such as eBay as seen here the £2 coin is listed for £3,500. Credit: eBay

But before you get too excited and consider putting your Charles Dickens up for sale, let’s take a look at what these ‘errors’ really mean…

Disappearing dots

This has also been found on many other £2 coins so is not exclusive to the Dickens coin, where the dots that should that go all around the silver centre of the coin suddenly disappear. Unfortunately this wouldn’t actually add any value to the coin, as it is simply caused by the mass production process, where millions of coins are being struck at once and the dies get worn down. It’s difficult to ensure all coins look exactly the same considering the millions of coins that are struck at one time, but we definitely feel that variations like this makes collecting more exciting.

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Dots around silver centre disappearing. Credit: eBay

Upside down lettering

Upside down lettering is very common on bi-metallic coins and can be seen on many of the £2 coins you find in your change. Again, this isn’t actually an error, but a variation to look out for on your coins. It happens during the minting process, when the edge lettering is applied before the obverse and reverse of the coin has even been struck. This then explains why some coins can end up with the edge lettering appearing upside down.

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£2 coin with upside down edge lettering

Misspelled edge inscription

Many people have noticed that there is a ‘miss spelled’ WILL on the edge inscription of their Charles Dickens £2 coin. This is actually caused by a worn out die, where the end of the L has been worn down to look like an I. This is a common variation amongst coins and can also be seen on the 2005 Gunpowder plot £2, which now has many variations of edge inscription due to the worn out R appearing as a P.

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Edge inscription ‘WILL’ spelt ‘WII’. Credit: eBay

The Charles Dickens £2 coin actually only ranks as ‘common’ on our Scarcity Index, however it’s fascinating to hear about the different variations people have noticed on their coins and looking out for these makes for great coin collecting!

Unfortunately, people listing coins like this on eBay hoping for elaborate amounts are usually just chancers looking for a quick buck and rarely mean the coin is actually an error.

It’s the differences caused by human error, such as a wrong date or design or even the wrong metal used that are a lot more sought after and would likely have added value for your coin – so be sure to keep a look out for these!


If you’re interested in coin collecting, our Change Checker web app is completely free to use and allows users to:

– Find and identify the coins in their pocket
– Collect and track the coins they have
– Swap their spare coins with other Change Checkers

Change Checker Web App Banner 2 Amends 1024x233 1 1024x233 - How much is my Charles Dickens £2 worth?

Sign up today at: www.changechecker.org/app