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Category: The Royal Mint

The Royal Mint’s Three Gold Coin Set to Commemorate the London 2012 Olympics

Faster Three-Coin Set to Commemorate the London 2012 Olympics

The Royal Mint launches its limited edition Gold Series – an exclusive three themed set created in fine 22 carat gold only. Inspired by the Olympic motto Faster, Higher, Stronger, the ‘Faster’ Series is the first set to go on sale in celebration of the 30th Olympiad in London 2012.

Including the rare £100 coin – the highest denomination for a coin available – the prestigious Gold Series is the ideal high-end memento of the first UK Olympics for over sixty years. With only 4,000 of these sets available to buy globally, this unique set is accompanied by an individually numbered Royal Mint certificate denoting the limited mintage of these coins and ensuring their high value investment in years to come.

The Faster Series coin set is presented in a luxurious hardwood walnut case with the Olympic Rings inscribed in gold foiling on the lid. The second and third three-coin sets of this singular collection, representing Altius (Higher) and Fortius (Stronger) will be available to purchase later in the countdown to London 2012.

Inspired by the classical heritage of the Olympic Games and combined with modern sporting achievement, each of the three coins in the distinctive Faster collection feature a different Roman God reflecting the first strand of the Olympic motto ‘Citius’ or ‘Faster’: Neptune, the God of the Sea, (1oz) watches over the sport of sailing; Diana, the Goddess of Hunting, (1/4oz) overlooks modern cyclists and Mercury, the God of Speed, (1/4oz) is depicted alongside track athletes.

The obverse of the coin has been designed by Ian Rank-Broadley FRBS with the Olympic reverse designed by sculptor John Bergdahl, who looked at both the classical and contemporary interpretations of the Olympic Games. Bergdahl explained: “The Olympic ideals span more than two and a half thousand years of history so I took inspiration from combining the classical ideology of the ancient Gods with images of modern athletes in modern attire and equipped with modern technology. And who knows, maybe those same Gods will still be smiling down on us in London 2012.”

Dave Knight, Director of Commemorative Coins, commented: “The Gold Series is incredibly exciting for us; it is the only collection in our London 2010 coin programme to feature the iconic Olympic rings and is the first ever £100 UK coin not featuring Britannia. As the name suggests, the collection is exclusively in gold and will not be available in any other metal. All these factors come together to make the Series highly prestigious and highly desirable. With the Faster set being the first launch from The Gold Series, I have no doubt that global demand will be incredibly strong and sell out quickly.” (more…)

Royal Mint Unveils New Britannia Coin Design

Today, the Royal Mint launches its newly designed 2010 Britannia coin series

The design depicts the famous icon of Britain and British coinage as an Amazonian-like warrior, with a protective and serene watch over modern Britain’s liberty and values.

The new design has been launched to celebrate Britannia’s enduring presence as an important symbol of national identity in changing times.

Designer Suzie Zamit says: “Britannia is a really important British icon and I wanted to create a design that represents her as a symbol of British liberties and democracy. I felt it was important to portray Britannia as strong – almost Amazonian – and courageous, but not overly warlike, more peaceful and protective.”

The new 2010 Britannia coin series is launched in both gold and silver, available in an extended range of both individual coins and Proof sets. Suzie Zamit’s beautiful design is the first new Britannia design since 2008 and offers a fresh interpretation of the goddess, capturing the strong, courageous and watchful qualities of her spirit.

The new Britannia wears a Corinthian-style helmet, emphasising her warlike spirit and is accompanied by a lion to symbolise courage. However, Britannia’s serene gaze and the presence of an olive branch, also portrays the goddess as a protective defender of peace and modern British liberty and values. Her eastward looking gaze alludes to Britain’s role in the EU and its presence in Afghanistan.

Dave Knight, Director of Commemorative Coin at the Royal Mint, said: “Britannia is an enduring icon that has become an integral part of British coinage and heritage. She represents the strength of the British national identity and Suzie Zamit has captured this force in her new design. We are delighted to have created a coin that honours the history of British coins, whilst celebrating the future of modern Britain. Our 2010 Britannia Series is a great chance for us, along with the public, to celebrate this constant symbol of British success.” (more…)

2008 United Kingdom Handover Ceremony Commemorative Coins

To celebrate the successful London 2012 bid and commemorate the Handover Ceremony of the Olympic Flag from Beijing to London on the 24 August 2008, the Royal Mint has struck a commemorative legal tender £2 coin available in 22 carat gold, sterling silver and base alloys.

The Design

The legal tender £2 coin features on its reverse the Olympic Flag and the London 2012 logo. This design has been created by the Royal Mint Engraving Team and has been authorised by the London Organising Committee for the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) and the International Olympic Committee (IOC).

Surrounding the central design are the words ‘BEIJING 2008’ and ‘LONDON 2012’ along its outer ring, set against a backdrop of lines reminiscent of an athletics track.

The edge of the Handover Ceremony £2 coin features the inscription I CALL UPON THE YOUTH OF THE WORLD.

The 2008 United Kingdom Handover Ceremony £2 Brilliant Uncirculated Presentation Pack

This specially designed presentation pack is a delightful and affordable way of commemorating the outstanding success of the London 2012 bid and the official Handover Ceremony. (more…)

Britannia Rules Again – New design offered by Royal Mint in Silver and Gold

New Britannia Gold and Silver Coins2008 brings a magnificent new reverse design for the Britannia coins, the seventh since this British coin was introduced in 1987. The designer, John Bergdahl, has created a standing portrait of Britannia, incorporating the motifs of the lighthouse, the trident, the shield and the helmet that have long been associated with the numismatic image of Britannia. The obverse bears the portrait of Her Majesty The Queen by Ian Rank-Broadley FRBS.

Produced in 22 carat gold, the Britannia gold coin, with a denomination of £25 and containing a quarter of an ounce of pure gold, is housed in a beautiful walnut-veneer presentation case accompanied by an individually numbered Certificate of Authenticity attesting to the low worldwide issue limit of just 1,000.

Struck from Britannia .958 silver, the 2008 United Kingdom Britannia One Ounce Silver Proof Coin is the largest United Kingdom silver coin, truly a heavyweight for serious collectors the world over.

Background & History

Britannia has symbolised Britain and her proud island heritage since the time of the Roman Emperor Hadrian (117-138AD). She first appeared on British currency in 1672 on the copper coins of Charles II. Used as a political symbol of the war with the Dutch, her olive branch represented a desire for peace above conflict.

Britannia has graced the coins of every British monarch since Charles II reflecting, in various poses, the changing status of the island nation as well as her ancient origins. Usually but not always depicted seated, Britannia gazes steadfastly towards a future in which she may be challenged but not overcome. (more…)

Royal Mint to offer 2008 UK Silver Proof Piedfort Four-Coin Collection

Piedfort Four Coin Collection from the Royal MintThe Royal Mint has just released a four-coin collection set comprised of silver Piedfort specimens of the three new commemorative coins for 2008 – the two magnificent £5 pieces, one honouring the 450th anniversary of the accession of Queen Elizabeth I and the other celebrating the 60th birthday of His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales, and the bi-colour £2 coin marking the centenary of the Olympic Games held in London in 1908 – along with the £1 coin bearing a fresh rendition of the Royal Arms.

The four coins have been struck in the traditional sterling silver alloy to Proof quality and the £2 coin, to emulate the bi-colour nature of its circulating counterpart, has been plated with .999 fine gold on its outer ring. A maximum of 3,000 Silver Proof Piedfort Collections have been authorised for 2008. Each collection is beautifully displayed in a luxurious black display case and is accompanied by a full-colour booklet which incorporates an individually numbered Certificate of Authenticity.

Although not Piedforts in a strict sense, thicker than normal coins were produced across Europe during the early modern period, particularly from the mid-sixteenth century to the mid-seventeenth century, as part of the broader practice of striking prestige pieces. At this time the exchange of valuable gifts between rulers and members of their entourage became an established courtly exercise. Within this context coins struck on thick blanks, together with other types of prestige pieces, were prepared on behalf of kings and noblemen primarily for the purposes of presentation and display. From Poland to the Spanish Netherlands, from Sweden to northern Italy, coins of this sort provided rulers with a convenient means of emphasising their wealth and power. (more…)

The New UK Coin Designs Revealed

New Designs

The Biggest Coin Event in British History Since Decimalisation

The coinage of the United Kingdom is changing. Familiar designs that have served us well for almost 40 years will be replaced by a new set of designs, contemporary in treatment yet grounded in the traditions of the coinage. Now, in a new age, the time has come to rejuvenate the coinage by seeking designs that treat traditional symbols in an innovative and modern way. The series that has been chosen brings new life to the coinage and, like the decimal designs 40 years ago, draws inspiration from the very fabric of British history.

The reverse side of the £1 coin will also show the complete Shield of the Royal Arms, with the front of the coins continuing to bear the existing portrait of Her Majesty The Queen. The £2 coin will remain unchanged.

The Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury Angela Eagle MP said: “The response to the public competition for new coin designs was overwhelming, and my congratulations go to Matthew Dent, whose innovative designs were chosen from over 4000 entries. His designs, which interpret the traditional theme of heraldry in a contemporary way, will be seen and used by millions of people across the United Kingdom.”

The new designs for all UK coins were chosen via an open competition which was widely publicised in the national media in August 2005 and attracted 4,000 entries. The winning designer is 26-year-old Matthew Dent, originally from Bangor who now lives and works in London as a graphic designer. (more…)

Queen’s coat of arms to herald new coins

By Andrew Pierce for

News Design for British CoinageThe Queen’s coat of arms is at the heart of the biggest changes to the British currency in 40 years which the Royal Mint will unveil tomorrow.

The designs for the reverse of the coins, from the one pence piece to the pound, have been a closely guarded secret.

But the Telegraph has learnt that the new pound coin features the traditional shield design from the Royal coat of arms.

The lower-denomination coins will feature close-up details of the shield which, when fitted together, show the shield as a whole.

The sovereign’s coat of arms has evolved over many years and reflects the history of the monarchy and country.

In the design the shield shows the Royal emblems of different parts of the United Kingdom: the three lions of England in the first and fourth quarters, the lion of Scotland in the second and the harp of Ireland in the third. Read Full Article in the Telegraph

25th Anniversary of £1 14-Coin Gold Set

25th Anniversary 14 Coin Gold Pound SetTo celebrate the 25th anniversary of the introduction of the decimal £1 coin, the Royal Mint has struck a superb set of 14 coins in a magnificent new collection. These beautiful coins are struck in 22 carat gold to incomparable Proof quality. ( The set is also available in a Silver Proof Collection)

Each coin in the collection features a different reverse design used on the £1 coin over the last quarter of a century. In all there are five different artists of the modern £1 coin and 14 different designs. The designers include Eric Sewell, Derek Gorringe, Leslie Durbin, Norman Sillman and Edwina Ellis. Two of the designs represent the United Kingdom with the Royal Arms and the Royal Shield, and the three regional sets of four – the Floral Series, the Heraldic Series and the Bridge Series represent the four constituent parts of the United Kingdom.

Background & History

On 28 October 1489 Henry VII instructed the officers of the Mint in the Tower to strike a new gold coin.

The pound sterling had been a unit of account for centuries but this new gold coin, given a face value of 20 shillings, was effectively the first pound coin. It was spectacular – the largest gold coin yet issued in England and arguably the most beautiful. Bearing elaborate yet commanding designs and named a sovereign, it was deliberately intended as a statement of the power and dignity of the new Tudor dynasty and was duly struck in turn by each of the Tudor monarchs. (more…)

My mother posed as Britannia, with a ruler for a trident

Christoper Ironside showing his designsWhat I most remember about my father designing the decimal coins in 1962 was the secrecy surrounding it all.

As an artist – he was a painter and taught life-drawing at the Royal College of Art – he’d been chosen as one of many designers to submit designs to a Royal Mint Committee, but decimalisation had not been announced and it was essential that no one knew anything about it.

And when his designs were finally chosen, we lived a kind of cloak-and-dagger life. The coins were first designed on paper, and then worked in reverse into large deep circles of plaster.

They would then be cast back to positive and my father would work on them, and then cast them back to negative and so on. Read Full Article

Britannia Loses Her Place on British Coins

BritanniaThe image of Britannia, which has graced British coins for centuries, is to be removed from the 50 pence piece as part of a redesign by the Royal Mint.

The overhaul of all coinage in April is set to be the biggest change to British currency since the introduction of decimalisation more than 35 years ago.

Gordon Brown personally approved the change as one of his last acts as Chancellor of the Exchequer, despite his current campaign to push Britishness. The Queen is also said to be supportive of the scheme.

It will be the first time in more than 300 years that Britannia is not featured on a British coin. Read Full Story

Three New UK Coins from the Royal Mint

New 2008 Royal Mint Commemorative CoinsThe Royal Mint has announced the availability of three new commemorative coins for 2008; The Elizabeth I Anniversary Crown, The 4th Olympiad London Anniversary £2, and The Prince of Wales 60th Birthday Crown.

The Elizabeth I Anniversary Crown

This £5 coin features a specially designed reverse celebrating the 450th anniversary of the accession of Queen Elizabeth I. On 17 November 1558 the 25-year-old Elizabeth, the daughter of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn, was proclaimed Queen of England.

The Reverse of this Brilliant Uncirculated crown-sized coin was inspired by the magnificent ‘Armada’ portrait of Elizabeth by George Gower, the Queen is crowned and set within a mandorla created by four decorative arches. The obverse features the portrait of Her Majesty The Queen by Ian Rank-Broadley FRBS. The coin display is an attractive folder rich in imagery and background information on the reign of one of the best-loved British monarchs. (more…)

2008 Emblems of Britain Gold Proof Set

2008 Emblems of Britain Gold Proof Set - The Royal MintFor the first time since decimalisation the legal tender coins of the United Kingdom will undergo a major design change. In the late spring of 2008 the nation will see new designs on the coinage, from the 1p to the ?1, reflecting a more modern twenty-first century Britain.

To mark this watershed in numismatic history, and to commemorate the reverse designs that have served Britain well for almost 40 years, the Royal Mint is producing a limited-edition gold Proof collection.

The Gold Collection comprises seven coins bearing the definitive reverse designs, the portrait of the Queen by Ian Rank-Broadley FRBS on their obverse, and are all dated 2008. Each coin is struck in 22 carat gold to Proof quality. For such a magnificent collection, the Royal Mint has commissioned high-quality hand-crafted oak veneer cases designed exclusively to house the gold Proof coins. An informative booklet featuring a potted history of the iconic designs completes the presentation. Incorporated into each booklet is an individually numbered Certificate of Authenticity signed by the Deputy Master of the Royal Mint. (more…)