The rarest 50p coins in circulation in the UK have been revealed by the Royal Mint ahead of the 50th anniversary of decimalisation.
One edition of the seven-sided coin, honouring Kew Gardens, is the most sought after with just 210,000 having been made, the Mint said.
The Mint has released new 50p coins to mark the anniversary of Decimal Day, when the UK ditched shillings, farthings and old pence for the new decimal system.
The transition to decimalisation took years of planning and also involved a huge information campaign.
In 2019, more than 500 million coins were released into circulation, including three new 50p designs celebrating Arthur Conon Doyle’s fictional detective Sherlock Holmes, and Paddington Bear at St Paul’s Cathedral and the Tower of London.
The 50th anniversary of decimalisation is on February 15, with the changeover having inspired many people to become coin collectors over the years.
The Royal Mint’s director of UK currency Mark Loveridge said: “Coin collecting remains as popular as ever, and we were delighted to release a number of special designs into circulation in 2019.
“The Kew Gardens (50p) remains the most coveted coin, with a mintage of just 210,000, but it’s always exciting to find a special design in your change.”
The rarest 50p coins in circulation
Here are the rarest 50p designs in circulation, with their year and the total minted, according to the Royal Mint:
2009 Kew Gardens, 210,000
2011 Olympic Wrestling, 1,129,500
2011 Olympic Football, 1,161,500
2011 Olympic Judo, 1,161,500
2011 Olympic Triathlon, 1,163,500
2018 Peter Rabbit, 1,400,000
2018 Flopsy Bunny, 1,400,000
2011 Olympic Tennis, 1,454,000
2011 Olympic Goalball, 1,615,500
2011 Olympic Shooting, 1,656,500
The new commemorative 50p coins are being made available to buy from www.royalmint.com in a range of precious metal and base proof finishes, with prices starting from £10 for a brilliant uncirculated coin and going up to £2,175 for a gold version. See more about them here.
The new 50p denomination commemorative coin was designed by Dominique Evans.
She said: “Even though people understood the reason for Decimal Day, they had and still have a fondness for the pre-decimal coins.
“Those pre-decimal coins can still be found all over the country, in random jumbles in boxes and drawers, which led me to place together the denominations as if you had just found them and were looking at them from above. The sweet wren peeks out from under the crown of a threepence, sitting alongside the rose of the sixpence – all below the iconic Britannia.”
-- to www.walesonline.co.uk