Time for the Royal Mint to show off its five special circulating designs of which we’ll see fuller commemorative range as the year progresses. If you want these in silver, the only way to buy them currently will be the full sets, but they will of course, be available individually in various combinations of silver and gold in seperate releases.
First is a coin celebrating 200 years since the publication of Frankenstein by the author, Mary Shelley. As a £2 coin, the first of three we’re looking at here, it has a distinctive bi-metallic design. The mint has chosen to use the outer ring to hold the inscriptions and a pretty cool ECG-style rendition of the book title in the centre. The vertical stripes make the design look a little busy, but it’s a decent issue. The second bimetallic £2 coin marks a centenary since the forming of the famous Royal Air Force. It’s another where the inscriptions sit in the gold border, while the main image, in this case the emblem of the RAF, occupies the middle. The last of the £2 issues is another Great War coin and one that marks the most important part of it – the Armistice. A poignant, if unadventurous design.
Next up is a coin marking the fifth birthday of Prince George. Not an event we’d consider particularly worthy of numismatic effort, the resulting coin is nice enough, however. A very clean piece – just the date is inscribed on the reverse – it’s an interesting look at the St George and the Dragon from a closer and lower perspective. An ultra-high relief variant would certainly give some great depth to the design, but one isn’t currently planned. We’d imagine this would be the most popular of the five new issues. The sole 50p coin is an esoteric one, commemorating the 1918 Representation of the People Act. This important act did, amongst other things, given millions more the right to vote. A symbolic design, if not an ambitious one.
As we said, they will be available in various versions on an individual basis as the year progresses, but if you want them now you’ll have to stump up for a set. The base five coins are available in silver (£310), silver piedfort (£595) and gold(£5,100). A bigger set of thirteen silver coins includes these five, along with the eight circulating currency designs, and will cost £610. All are available to order now and we’ll take a closer look at each one as they have their individual releases.