It’s been an exciting week for UK coin collectors and if you’ve not been following the announcements on Facebook or Twitter then this article should bring you up to speed! Those of you who have been collecting coins for a few years or more will know that November is normally an exciting time at The Royal Mint, as the coins of the following year are released. So, you’ll be excited to learn that on Monday the new coins for 2016 were announced! In total, eight 2016 UK coins have been revealed alongside The Sovereign for 2016.
June 2015 marked the 200th anniversary of one of the greatest and most decisive battles in European history – the Battle of Waterloo. Fought on 18 June 1815, the Battle of Waterloo saw British and allied forces, led by The Duke of Wellington, defeat the French army, led by Napoleon Bonaparte. The battle lasted just one day, however it was part of a larger assault on Europe by Napoleon that led to a catastrophic loss of life. The eventual allied victory at Waterloo brought to an end the Napoleonic wars and over 20 years of conflict in Europe. The 200th anniversary of this significant battle is marked on the 2015 UK £5 coin, which was released earlier this year.
When David Lawrence, designer of the Battle of Waterloo £5 coin, recently came to The Royal Mint, we took the opportunity to find out more about his design, for the next instalment of our video series, the Designers’ Inspiration Series.
It’s safe to say that 2015 has been an exciting year for coin collectors and a historic year for UK coins! It’s been a year that’s seen the coinage portrait of Her Majesty The Queen change and Britannia return to UK coins on a new definitive £2 coin. There have also been several commemorative themes marked on UK coins in 2015, including the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta, the 75th anniversary of the Battle of Britain and the centenary of the First World War – all of which have been marked on circulating coins!
With so many exciting things happening to the coins we know and love, lots of you have been asking us ‘Just what will we find in our change this year?‘, ‘Which coins will feature the new portrait of The Queen?‘ and ‘How many coins will be struck in 2015?‘. So, we’ve created a handy fact sheet for you to keep track of your 2015 Coin Hunt.
On 15 September 1940 the German Luftwaffe launched a massive assault on Britain that it believed would pave the way for a successful invasion and bring an end to the Battle of Britain. However, a day of intense fighting saw the Germans suffer their highest losses since the ‘Hardest Day’, 18 August. It was an overwhelming defeat for the Luftwaffe and the action on 15 September would ultimately bring to an end the Battle of Britain. For this reason the day became known and celebrated in the United Kingdom as ‘Battle of Britain Day‘.
Ahead of the 75th anniversary of Battle of Britain Day, we caught up with the designers of the Battle of Britain 50p, Gary and Lee Breeze, at IWM Duxford, to find out more about their inspiration and how it felt to design the coin to mark this significant anniversary.
Her Majesty The Queen enters the record books today as she becomes the longest reigning monarch in British history. Her reign will exceed the length of Queen Victoria’s who was previously Britain’s longest reigning monarch, with a reign that spanned 63 years and 216 days – that’s a total of 23,226 days! Queen Elizabeth II and Queen Victoria are the only British monarchs to have celebrated their Diamond Jubilee (60 years on the throne), with King George III, King James VI and I, King Henry III and King Edward all having celebrated 50 years or more on the throne.
More than a century separates these two remarkable reigns, both of which come with some remarkable statistics – particularly when we take a look at coins. So, we thought we’d take a look at The Queen’s reign in numbers.
On 9 September 2015, the nation will celebrate as Her Majesty The Queen officially becomes Britain’s longest reigning monarch. The Queen will beat the record set by her great-great grandmother Queen Victoria who reigned for 63 years and 216 days.
The Royal Mint has long had a close relationship with the Kings and Queens of Britain, striking the effigy of the monarch on coins for over 1,000 years. But the relationship doesn’t stop there… commemorative coins have been struck to celebrate key milestones in the life and reign of our current monarch and, with a reign of 63 years, there have been plenty of occasions to celebrate during The Queen’s reign.
2015 is shaping up to be an exciting year for coin collectors. Two announcements in particular have many of us eagerly awaiting the coins of 2015 with much anticipation. In November, The Royal Mint not only announced the 2015 UK commemorative coin themes but also revealed plans for a fifth definitive coinage portrait of Her Majesty The Queen.
How many of us have ever asked ourselves the question – what’s in my change? Those of us who have will know the answer, of course, which is – more history, art and treasure than you could imagine! Let me elaborate…
Today is a hugely significant day in the 307-year history of the constitution of the United Kingdom, as we all now know the result of the Scottish referendum. The vote has come back in favour of No and the Kingdom remains United.
We thought it was worth looking back over those years into the mists of time to explore a key figure in the creation of that Union – the life and reign of Queen Anne, the last Stuart Queen and the first monarch of Great Britain. Events during Queen Anne’s reign have a significance that still resonates today and the Act of Union in 1707 could be considered the most significant, and a legacy that now lives on.
Most of us will be aware of the hugely significant nature of the length of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II’s reign. Her Diamond Jubilee in 2012 inspired celebrations in streets across the UK and towns and cities all over the world, and with good reason; it was only the second time in our history that a British monarch had achieved a reign of 60 years.
The only previous such anniversary was enjoyed by The Queen’s great-great-Grandmother, Queen Victoria, who also went on to record the longest reign by any monarch in British history; 63 years, seven months and two days. Looking forwards, there is every chance that Queen Elizabeth II will surpass this record and, in September 2015, become Britain’s longest reigning monarch.
As we begin to look towards this historic date, we have uncovered some intriguing facts and figures about the royal effigies – from Victoria to Elizabeth – that have appeared on one of our most-loved and hardest-working coins, the penny.