Pobjoy Continues Raymond Briggs’ Father Christmas Collection

Raymond Briggs’ Father Christmas first appeared in 1973 and became a much loved illustration.
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Following on from the much-loved releases of previous years, Pobjoy Mint presents a stunning new design for its 2021 fourth edition of Father Christmas, the character derived from a British Children’s book written and illustrated by Raymond Briggs. The new design is the second Christmas 50 pence issued on behalf of British Indian Ocean Territory.

British Indian Ocean Territory / 50 Pence / Cupro-Nickel / 27.30 mm / 8.00g / Mintage: 7,500 (Cupro-Nickel).

Raymond Briggs’ Father Christmas

This famous character first appeared in 1973 in Father Christmas, before making a second appearance in 1975 in Father Christmas Goes on Holiday. In these publications however, Father Christmas is introduced as a rather grumpy interpretation of the stereotypical character. He still looks like the Father Christmas we all know and love with his traditional large white beard and red suit, however Raymond Briggs’ Father Christmas is a down to earth working man living in contemporary Britain with his pets and reindeer, coping with everyday domestic chores and preparing for another Christmas.

In this one of a kind award-winning Christmas book, Father Christmas has awoken from a dream of summer sun to discover it is December 24th, Christmas Eve – the start of his longest night’s work of the year! Much merriment ensues as Father Christmas travels the world, with a few issues along the way, to bring joy to children everywhere.

Raymond Briggs (right) in 1983, with another of his books for children translated into Dutch. Photo: Rob Croes / Anefo // CC0

The design of the 2021 coin is inspired by an illustration from Raymond Briggs’ book, with this year featuring Father Christmas holding his loyal dog with a decorated Christmas Tree in the background. The inscription reads “Father Christmas” and the value “FIFTY PENCE” is shown. Approved by the Licensor and Buckingham Palace, which is very fitting as in the book the last delivery is to the Palace, the obverse of the coin carries the Pobjoy Mint effigy of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

These stunning 50 pence coins have been produced in both Colored and Uncolored Cupro-Nickel Diamond Finish, Colored Proof Sterling Silver, and Colored Proof Sterling Silver Piedfort.


You can find more information on this coin and the different qualities it is produced in on the British Pobjoy Mint website.

And for more Pobjoy coins check out the Cosmos of Collectibles database.

The 1991 short film “Father Christmas” is available on YouTube.

Raymond Briggs tell you more about how he came up with the idea for “Father Christmas” in this article in The Guardian.