The British currency has come a long way since it was first developed in 60-80AD. From simple pieces of metal hammered flat by hand to the ‘indestructible’ banknotes of today, the technique of making the currency has improved vastly in the last few centuries.
In this mini-series of four articles, we will look at coins from 900AD up to the 2022 Platinum Jubilee edition coins, and the latter is the focus of this final piece.
The Platinum Jubilee marks 70 years of Queen Elizabeth II’s reign – the longest-serving monarch in British History. Therefore, it is the first time Britain has ever celebrated a Platinum Jubilee and as always there are many collectible items produced to mark the momentous occasion.
Much like stamps, coins have always been made to mark special events such as anniversaries, and high-profile royal weddings, to commemorate British authors, historical figures, and characters, and be reproduced from history, especially for avid coin collectors. Many of these coins are produced in limited quantities and never become legal tender.
The Platinum Jubilee coins won’t be used as legal tender, so they will never be in circulation for people to buy goods with. However, eager Royal memorabilia fans have the chance to get either a single coin or a set directly from the Royal Mint.
A designer called John Bergdahl created the portrait for the coins, and it shows the Queen on horseback (a favored hobby of hers), as well as a selection of two different designs for the back of the coins. This design is mostly used for the silver £5 coin.
There is also a 50p coin as part of the collection – the first that commemorates a Royal landmark, and though the back of the coin has Bergdahl’s portrait, the front has a design inspired by the Queen’s reign that was created by the design agency Osbourne Ross.
The two sets available for purchase are the half-sovereign and the sovereign collection, each featuring three coins. They are quite expensive but will be well worth the money for any keen Royal enthusiast as they are one-of-a-kind.
The final coin available is the Celebration Sovereign, which was made on 6th February 2022. The design is different again, this time by an artist called Timothy Noad, and features a depiction of the Royal Arms.
Each coin/set will come in packaging enhanced with information about the Queen’s reign and personal life collected by royal historian Professor Kate Williams. The coins can be bought from the Royal Mint website for various amounts depending on which coins you choose.
The coins are worthy of belonging to British History because the event they commemorate has never happened before and may never happen again in our lifetimes. We hope you have enjoyed this mini-series on British coins!