The Royal Mint has announced five new designs that will appear on British coins in 2021. The new commemorative coins are available in The Royal Mint’s ‘Annual Set’ and will commemorate:
- The 95th Birthday of Her Majesty the Queen on a £5
- 250th Anniversary of the birth of Sir Walter Scott on a £2
- The life and work of John Logie Baird on a 50p
- The 50th Anniversary of Decimal Day 2021 on a 50p
- The life and work of H.G. Wells 2021 on a £2
Clare Maclennan, Divisional Director of the Consumer Division at The Royal Mint said, “Each year The Royal Mint unveils a series of commemorative coins to celebrate key moments and milestones that helped shape Britain. This year’s annual set marks some of the biggest anniversaries in 2021, including Her Majesty The Queen’s 95th birthday and John Logie Baird’s legacy of innovation. Each coin is a miniature work of art and has been designed as a treasured keepsake or gift.
“This year’s Annual Set is particularly special for The Royal Mint as we celebrate one of the biggest milestones in our 1,100-year history – the anniversary of Decimalisation. This was one of the largest and most intensive public awareness campaigns ever staged by the government, and introduced the coins that we know today. Decimalisation was the birth of modern coin collecting, and it is fitting that the anniversary has been celebrated on a 50 pence – which is Britain’s most loved coin.”
Her Majesty The Queen’s 95th birthday
This special £5 coin celebrates a remarkable milestone, making Queen Elizabeth II the first British monarch to reach such a grand age. During her reign The Royal Mint has created five different effigies of Her Majesty The Queen documenting her reign, and she resides on every British coin in circulation.
50th anniversary of Decimalisation
This landmark moment introduced the coins we use today, and was Britain’s biggest peacetime operation. It marks a special anniversary in The Royal Mint’s own 1,100-year history and has been commemorated on a 50p coin. To celebrate this momentous occasion, the Decimal Day 50p coin features the second effigy of Her Majesty The Queen on its obverse – this portrait was created by Arnold Machin RA for decimalisation to mark the transition and help people identify the new coinage. The reverse design was created by Royal Mint employee Dominique Evans. This coin featuring the Queen’s second effigy is only available as part of the annual set.
250th anniversary of the birth of Sir Walter Scott
Recognised as one of the most influential Scots in history, Sir Walter Scott is renowned for his contribution to literature with a number of novels and poems, many of which remain literary classics to this day. 250 years on from his birth, Scott’s incredible literary legacy will be commemorated £2 coin.
75th anniversary of the death of John Logie Baird
A prolific inventor and famous for his early prototypes of television, John Logie Baird’s work changed society and entertainment around the world. The Royal Mint is commemorating the 75th anniversary of the death of John Logie Baird on a commemorative 50p coin which celebrates the inventor and his creations.
75th anniversary of the death of H.G Wells
Best known for science fiction novels such as The Time Machine and The War of the Worlds, H.G Wells is renowned for his ability to bring science fiction to life through his work, earning him nicknames such as the ‘father of science fiction’. Seventy-five years on from his death, The Royal Mint celebrates the life and work of H.G Wells on a commemorative coin with a design that captures iconic images from Well’s work, including The War of the Worlds and The Invisible Man.
As part of a set The Royal Mint’s Premium Medal is also available.
For more information on the different sets and coins go to the Royal Mint website.
For more background information on the decimalisation don’t miss Simon Bytheway’s article on the subject.
And for more British coins visit the Cosmos of Collectibles database!