Striking facts – the art of minting coins

Proof coins are struck using special dies and using more labour-intensive methods, they are inevitably more expensive but they offer qualities than cannot be matched by other coins.

We can produce up to 750 circulation standard coins a minute at The Royal Mint. That enables us to deliver millions of coins a year both to the UK and to a large number of international customers. We are the world’s leading export mint, so we need to be able to produce high volumes with a high standard of accuracy to retain our reputation and standing. We are able to do this because we have sophisticated processes and machinery, and a skilled workforce with years of experience.

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The coins that never were – Christopher Ironside’s unseen designs

Designing Britain’s decimal coins began in 1961, far earlier than you may imagine.

Christopher Ironside was one of the talented individuals invited to submit designs as part of a competition The Royal Mint opened to Britain’s finest artists and designers. After 5 long years of work, Ironside was summoned to the Mint to be given the news that the Chancellor of the Exchequer, James Callaghan, was about to announce that Britain’s new decimal coins would be designed through a new open competition.

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The Romance of coins – bring a romantic tradition to your Valentine’s Day

Coins have been used as tokens of love and affection for thousands of years.

The earliest Wedding Vows even included reference to gifts of gold and silver. The coin you hold today may have already passed through the hands of your partner long before you met and equally your future husband or wife may be in possession of a coin that you will soon come to hold. Coins tell stories, and they are a part of our everyday lives like no other object. This gives them great significance, and gives them an inherent romantic quality.

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Dollar notes to be replaced by coins – The Royal Mint view

Debate in the US is heating up over the issue of replacing the country’s beloved dollar note with a coin.

Dollars - coin and notes

The United States’ Government Accountability Office (GAO) report suggests that switching to $1 coins could save $4.4 billion over the next 30 years.

This sparks some interesting questions that are of great relevance to everyone here at The Royal Mint. We have over 1,100 years of experience in minting, and we are currently the world’s leading export Mint. Having been through the same experience some 30 years ago when we switched from the £1 note to the £1 coin, we simply had to respond to this fascinating debate.

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London Underground anniversary – tributes both minted and printed

The London Underground is a British icon and it’s only fitting that iconic British brands The Royal Mint and Penguin Books should choose to produce commemorative coins and books to mark the occasion.

The London Underground has contributed far more than just convenient transport, it has come to represent what is best about British design, ingenuity, innovation and culture. The anniversary is an opportunity to reflect on 150 years through which British society  changed immeasurably.

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The Royal Mint awards itself a CE Mark!

You can probably imagine that, given the quantities involved and the precision required, making coins is a major operation.

It requires a production facility that involves a lot of heavy industrial machinery and some very skilled people.

The engineers who work at The Royal Mint are among the very best in their field. Their skill contributes to our ability to exceed our customers’ expectations and to produce coins that are among the best in the world.

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The Royal Mint’s UK coin circulation figures – correct at August 2012

Traditionally, we have always published our coin circulation figures once a year. Recently though, we have been able to access the figures on a monthly basis. To take advantage of this we’ve tried to make the figures more accessible by putting them into an infographic.

Does it help you understand the numbers? Have you got any ideas for future versions? Did you know there are nearly 500 coins in circulation for every person in the UK? Does this help you understand why London 2012 Sports 50ps are fairly rare even though there are 50,000,000 of them?

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The Royal Mint Pinterest page keeps growing!

Since we last mentioned Pinterest The Royal Mint’s page has gone from strength to strength.

We now have boards covering a range of topics that relate to The Royal Mint and we are adding new ones all the time. Below you can see a selection of pins from our “Your Olympic and Paralympic 50p Collections” board. These are all pictures that people have tweeted @royalmintuk – have you tweeted yours?

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