Royal Mint begins production of first circulating coins featuring King Charles III: 50p coin to be lauched in Dec
Saturday 29 October 2022 8:37 AM UTC
LONDON Oct 29: The Royal Mint, the official maker of UK coins, has started production of circulating coins featuring the image of King Charles III. The 50p coin has started to be struck at The Royal Mint in Llantrisant, Wales, and will enter tills, wallets and purses in December.
Eventually, 9.6 million 50p coins of the latest design will be made. Other denominations will be manufactured, carrying the King’s image, in line with demand.
They will co-circulate with coins featuring the late Queen Elizabeth II, so those 27 billion coins will still be accepted in shops. Before decimalisation, it was common for people to carry coins featuring different monarchs in their pockets.
The coins follow centuries of tradition with the monarch now facing left – the opposite way to his predecessor. Profiles are alternated between left and right for successive monarchs.
As with previous British kings, and unlike the Queen, King Charles III wears no crown.
Sculptor Martin Jennings, who created the portrait of the King, said that witnessing the coin being produced was a “quite remarkable experience”.
He said it took months of painstaking work to get the image right.
He used pictures of King Charles on his 70th birthday to create a likeness of the monarch, in what is the smallest work he has ever had to produce.
The reverse side of the coin is a copy of the design used on the 1953 Crown struck to commemorate the Queen’s coronation.
Anne Jessopp, Chief Executive of The Royal Mint, said: “We are proud to have struck each coin of Her Late Majesty’s reign, and to continue our role as official coin maker into the reign of King Charles III.”
All UK coins bearing the portrait of Queen Elizabeth II will remain legal tender and in active circulation. Historically, it has been commonplace for coins featuring the effigies of different monarchs to co-circulate. This ensures a smooth transition, with minimal environmental impact and cost, the Royal Mint said in a press release.
There are approximately 27 billion coins currently circulating in the UK bearing the portrait of Queen Elizabeth II. These will be replaced over time as they become damaged or worn and to meet demand for additional coins, it said. – PTI