Author Topic: The Decimal Coins of the Sterling Area  (Read 34110 times)

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Offline <k>

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Re: The Decimal Coins of the Sterling Area
« Reply #15 on: June 17, 2016, 07:59:13 PM »
The fifty pence coin.

The fifty pence coin is now commonly used for commemorative issues throughout the sterling area. St Helena and Ascension is the only part of the sterling area that has never issued a circulating commemorative heptagonal fifty pence coin, but it has issued collector fifty pence coins that were round and 38.1mm in diameter.

The Falkland Islands was the only territory that did not initially include a fifty pence coin in its decimal set. It issued its own decimal coins in 1974 but did not add a fifty pence denomination until 1980.

The Isle of Man is the only part of the sterling area, and anywhere in the world, to have issued a heptagonal fifty pence coin with edge inscriptions: it commemorated the Millennium of Tynwald in 1979.
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Offline <k>

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Re: The Decimal Coins of the Sterling Area
« Reply #16 on: June 17, 2016, 08:00:16 PM »
The reduced size fifty pence coin.

In 1997 the UK, Jersey, Gibraltar, Guernsey and the Isle of Man reduced the size and weight of their fifty pence coins.

The Falkland Islands followed suit in 1998.

St Helena and Ascension did not issue a reduced size fifty pence until 2003.

Ireland never reduced the size of its fifty pence, and kept the original specifications until the coin was made defunct by the adoption of the euro.
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Offline <k>

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Re: The Decimal Coins of the Sterling Area
« Reply #17 on: June 17, 2016, 08:01:44 PM »
Fifty pence banknotes.

In the UK, the 50 new pence piece replaced the 10 shilling note in October 1969, as part of the transition to full decimalisation in 1971, and in order to familiarise the public with the decimal system beforehand. The 10 shilling note ceased to be legal tender on 22nd November 1970.

Instead of replacing the 10 shilling note with a coin, the Isle of Man replaced it with a 50p banknote in 1969. At the time the Isle of Man used only UK coins, but it introduced its own decimal coins in 1971.

The Falkland Islands also introduced a 50p banknote in 1969. At the time it used only UK coins, but it introduced its own decimal coins in 1974.

St. Helena did not issue its own banknotes until 1976, after decimalisation, and did not issue its own coins until 1984. It issued a 50p banknote in 1979.



See also: Fifty pence banknotes that appeared BEFORE decimalisation.
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Offline <k>

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Re: The Decimal Coins of the Sterling Area
« Reply #18 on: June 17, 2016, 08:03:47 PM »
The round pound - part 1.







I wrote in an earlier post that, in the sterling area, all the coins matched their counterparts (with minor exceptions in the case of the twenty pence coins). By that, I meant where they actually had counterparts. Usually the UK would take the lead and issue a circulation coin, then the other parts of the sterling area would follow suit. In 1978, however, the Isle of Man issued the sterling area's first modern decimal pound coin.

Unlike the current pound coins of the sterling area, this first Manx pound coin was not thick but light and thin. Its diameter was 22.5mm, close to the 23.6 mm of the large 5 pence coin of the time, with an edge that alternated between smooth and milled. The coin was made of virenium, a new alloy at the time, which was silvery in colour but had a goldish tint when you turned it in the light.

Apparently the Manx government did intend the coin to circulate, but when I visited the Isle of Man in 1981, I did not find any in circulation. The denomination apparently did not find acceptance with the Manx public, who preferred the one pound note. In 1983, when the UK issued its own pound coin of very different specifications (a thick, chunky nickel-brass coin), the Isle of Man followed suit and produced a new pound coin with matching specifications. Since then, the Isle of Man has always followed the UK's lead with regard to its circulation coins, rather than going off in its own direction.

The Manx "round pound" was issued from 1978 to 1982 inclusive. It should probably be regarded as a failed experiment: a circulation coin that didn't circulate.

 
« Last Edit: November 23, 2018, 03:37:10 PM by <k> »
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Offline <k>

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Re: The Decimal Coins of the Sterling Area
« Reply #19 on: June 17, 2016, 08:06:33 PM »
The round pound - part 2.







In 1981, Guernsey proved to be the second part of the sterling area to issue a circulation pound coin. It was very similar in specification to the later standard round pound coins, being made of nickel-brass, 22mm in diameter (compared to 22.5mm for the later standard pound coins)) and weighing 7.9g (as opposed to 9.5g for the later standard pound coins). Guernsey, however, is one of those parts of the sterling area where the population is not fond of pound coins, for the simple reason that Guernsey one pound notes are still issued. So again, perhaps we should call this a non-circulating circulation coin.

As already mentioned, the UK usually takes the lead in issuing new coins, then the other parts of the sterling area follow. In this case the UK did not release a circulation pound coin until 1983. Like the Guernsey pound coin of 1981, it was thick, heavy and made of nickel-brass, but with very slightly larger dimensions. It is curious that Guernsey's pound coin of 1981 was so close in its specifications to the UK round pound coin of 1983 onwards. Both coins were made by the Royal Mint, so Guernsey possibly had advance news of the UK's forthcoming pound coin and its specifications.







Guernsey did not issue a pound coin in 1982, but in 1983 it issued one with a new reverse design (H.M.S. Crescent, a frigate), with slightly different specifications, that matched those of the UK round pound coin. It did not issue a pound coin in 1984, but in 1985 it issued one with another new reverse design (a pound sign, representing Guernsey's financial industry), which it has retained to this day.

 
« Last Edit: December 15, 2020, 02:05:33 PM by <k> »
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Re: The Decimal Coins of the Sterling Area
« Reply #20 on: June 17, 2016, 08:07:57 PM »
The round pound coin - part 3.



Specifications.

Since 1983, all the round pound coins of the sterling area have matched the UK's in weight, dimensions and colour. In the UK, Jersey, Gibraltar, and the Isle of Man, there has arisen a tradition of altering the reverse design of the circulation pound coins most years, but the Falkland Islands and St Helena and Ascension have kept the same reverse design all these years. Guernsey has only had three different reverse designs, and the current one has been in place since 1985.

Ireland did not issue a pound coin until 1990, when it was no longer part of the sterling area, and its specifications were very different from the sterling area pound coins; Ireland issued only one commemorative pound design of an ancient boat in the year 2000, otherwise the reverse of the punt coin always carried the standard design of a red deer.



Latecomers.

Although the Falkland Islands has issued its own decimal coins since 1974, it did not issue a circulation pound coin until 1987. All the other parts of the sterling area issued a circulation pound coin in 1983, except for St Helena and Ascension (1984) and Gibraltar (1988), who did not have their own coinage in 1983 but issued a pound coin as part of their first sets. As already mentioned, Ireland did not issue a pound coin (or punt coin) until 1990, but it had left the sterling area in 1978.



The UK 12-sided pound.

The UK 12-sided bimetallic pound coin was issued on 28 March 2017. So far, none of the other sterling users have issued their own version of this coin.

 
« Last Edit: November 23, 2018, 03:45:55 PM by <k> »
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Re: The Decimal Coins of the Sterling Area
« Reply #21 on: June 17, 2016, 08:09:23 PM »
The pound sign.

So many pound coins but so few pound signs. How many pound coins show the pound sign? Three.









Since 1985 the reverse of the Guernsey pound coin shows a detail from the pound note - but it also spells out the denomination in words. So really it's just a picture of a pound sign. Does that count? It depends on your point of view.





Another coin to show the pound sign was Ireland's - except the Irish called it the punt.





The UK 12-sided pound coin, issued in 2017, does include the pound sign - but only as a latent image.

 
« Last Edit: March 28, 2019, 04:40:57 PM by <k> »
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Re: The Decimal Coins of the Sterling Area
« Reply #22 on: June 17, 2016, 08:13:58 PM »
The two pound coin.







The UK, Gibraltar, and the Isle of Man each issued a circulation bimetallic two pound coin in 1997.

Jersey and Guernsey followed suit in 1998.

St Helena and Ascension issued a two pound coin in 2002, but it was monometallic. I do not know whether it was meant to circulate. It released a bimetallic version of similar design in 2003.

The Falkland Islands did not issue a circulating bimetallic two pound until 2004.



One design or many?

Jersey, Guernsey, and St Helena and Ascension have only ever used one standard reverse design for their circulation two pound coin, whereas the UK, Gibraltar, and the Isle of Man have issued various commemorative designs. The Falkland Islands has had two reverse designs for the circulation 2 pounds coin. The UK has a standard reverse design but in most years also issues two pound coins with one or sometimes more different commemorative reverses, and these also can be found in circulation.

 
« Last Edit: December 15, 2020, 10:33:00 PM by <k> »
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Re: The Decimal Coins of the Sterling Area
« Reply #23 on: June 17, 2016, 08:14:29 PM »
"£2" or "TWO POUNDS" ?

As of 2011, only 6 two pound coins have used "£2" in the legend.



Jersey uses "TWO POUNDS" on the obverse but "£2" appears in the latent image on the reverse.





Guernsey uses both figures and words on the reverse of its two pound coin.





In 2002 the UK issued four special two pound coins to commemorate the Commonwealth Games, one for each constituent country of the UK. The one above shows the flag of England. Each coin showed the denomination in figures but not words. These coins were, up to that date, the only two pound coins not to include the denomination in words. All other UK two pound coins carried the denomination in words only.

 
« Last Edit: March 28, 2019, 04:45:00 PM by <k> »
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Re: The Decimal Coins of the Sterling Area
« Reply #24 on: June 17, 2016, 08:16:14 PM »
The two pound coin: does it circulate?

How frequently do the two pound coins turn up in circulation in the various parts of the sterling area? Fellow forum members tell me that they are scarce or not to be found in the Channel Islands and Gibraltar. All the crown dependencies retain one pound notes, which means that pound coins and two pound coins are much less likely to circulate in significant numbers, though Gibraltar, the Falkland Islands, and St Helena and Ascension no longer issue one pound notes.
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Re: The Decimal Coins of the Sterling Area
« Reply #25 on: June 17, 2016, 08:17:59 PM »
The Maklouf portrait.







In 1985, the UK updated the obverse of its coins by replacing the Machin effigy of the Queen with a new one by Raphael Maklouf.

Guernsey and the Isle of Man also adopted the Maklouf portrait in 1985. Guernsey had previously never used a portrait of the Queen on its circulation coins but had used its state coat of arms instead.

Jersey never adopted the Maklouf portrait for its standard circulation coins. Instead, it retained the Machin portrait until the end of 1997 and adopted the Rank-Broadley portrait in 1998.

The Falkland Islands did not adopt the Maklouf portrait until 1987, and only on its one pound coin. It did not adopt the portrait on any other of its circulating coins, which retained the Machin portrait until 2003. In 2004 all the circulation coins adopted the Rank-Broadley portrait.

Gibraltar did not issue its own decimal set until 1988, and the Maklouf portrait appeared on the obverse of all the coins.

St Helena and Ascension issued no circulation coins from 1985 to 1990, and the Maklouf portrait did not appear on their coins until 1991. It is still used on all their circulation coins, and the Rank-Broadley portrait has not been adopted.

 
« Last Edit: June 17, 2016, 09:49:07 PM by <k> »
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Re: The Decimal Coins of the Sterling Area
« Reply #26 on: June 17, 2016, 08:19:45 PM »
The Maklouf special portrait.







When the standard Maklouf effigy of the Queen was released in 1985, another portrait, also by Maklouf, was issued, but it was meant to be used only for special occasions, that is, on commemorative coins. Gibraltar issued a special set of commemorative circulation coins in 2004, to remember the Battle of Trafalgar, and it used a slightly modified version of Maklouf's special portrait on the obverse of the coins, replacing the Rank-Broadley effigy. It has since retained the Maklouf special portrait on its circulation coins up to the present day.

Technically speaking, the special portrait is referred to as the uncouped effigy. This is because it is not cut off at the neck but includes the shoulders. The standard portrait shows the couped effigy.
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Re: The Decimal Coins of the Sterling Area
« Reply #27 on: June 17, 2016, 08:21:11 PM »
The Rank-Broadley portrait.







In 1998 the UK replaced the Maklouf portrait with a new effigy by Ian Rank-Broadley.

Jersey, Guernsey, the Isle of Man, and Gibraltar also adopted the Rank-Broadley portrait in 1998.

The Falkland Islands did not adopt the Rank-Broadley portrait until 2004.

St Helena and Ascension have never adopted the Rank-Broadley portrait and still use the standard Maklouf portrait on all their circulation coins.
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Re: The Decimal Coins of the Sterling Area
« Reply #28 on: June 17, 2016, 08:22:17 PM »
NEW pence or not?





When the UK went decimal, the legend on its coins included the word "NEW", to indicate that these were decimal pence, and not the old predecimal pence.  The word "NEW" appeared on the UK's decimal coins from 1968 to 1981 inclusive.

See also: The "Illegal" 50p and the Death of "NEW PENCE".





The word "NEW" appeared on the Isle of Man's decimal coins from 1971 to 1975 inclusive.





The word "NEW" appeared on Guernsey's decimal coins from 1968 to 1976. Whilst Guernsey dropped the word "NEW" from its coins in 1977, the only coins with "NEW" were dated 1968, 1969, 1970 and 1971.  No coins dated 1972 to 1976 inclusive were struck in any form.





The word "NEW" appeared on Jersey's decimal coins from 1968 to 1980 inclusive.






The Falkland pound coin.





The original circulation coins of the Falkland Islands carried the denomination only in figures; neither "NEW" nor "PENCE" were used in the legend. However, the one pound and two pound coins, released in 1987 and 2004 respectively, both carry the denomination in words only; the lower denominations still carry only figures.





Gibraltar, and St Helena and Ascension, have never used the word "NEW" on their circulation coins; by the time they were released in the 1980s, no other parts of the sterling area used it any longer. Gibraltar did, however, use the legend "25 NEW PENCE" on some of its collector coins of the 1970s.





Ireland used both words and numerals for the denominations on its predecimal coins, but its decimal coins used only numerals, along with "P" for pence; the word "NEW" was never used in the legends.



So, of those who used the word "NEW" in the coin legends, the Isle of Man dropped it in 1976; Guernsey in 1977; Jersey in 1981; and the UK in 1982. Usually the UK takes the lead in making changes to the standard coinage; in this case it was the last to adopt a change.

   
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Re: The Decimal Coins of the Sterling Area
« Reply #29 on: June 17, 2016, 08:24:13 PM »
Styles and titles.





The coins of the UK are different from those of the other parts of the sterling area, in that the obverse legend contains abbreviations in Latin, and there is no reference to the country of origin on the coins. The legend translates as: Elizabeth II, by the grace of God: Queen and Defender of the Faith. The final title refers to her position as Head of the Church of England.





Until the end of 1984, Guernsey used a Norman French legend on the obverse of its coins, and instead of a portrait of the Queen the state coat of arms was depicted. However, since 1985 Guernsey has used a portrait of the Queen on the obverse of its coins, and the legend is now in English.





Guernsey's obverse legend, like the UK's, includes the words "ELIZABETH II".





Gibraltar initially followed the same pattern as Guernsey: "ELIZABETH II".





From 2012 to 2016, Gibraltar used the legend "ELIZABETH II QUEEN OF GIBRALTAR".





Since 2017, Gibraltar uses the legend "ELIZABETH II · D · G · REGINA · GIBRALTAR".





From 1971 to 1979 the Isle of Man's coins referred to "ELIZABETH THE SECOND".





From 1980 onwards, the Manx coins refer to "ELIZABETH II"", though their one pound coins did not do so until 1988.





The legend on the Manx coins issued since 2017 reads: "QUEEN ELIZABETH II • ISLE OF MAN".





Jersey always uses the word "QUEEN" in the legend and spells out "THE SECOND" in full.





The legend on the coins of the Falkland Islands initially fell into the same pattern as that of Jersey, above.





The Falkland Islands issued a new set in 2019 with an amended legend (left).
The 5 pence alone (right) had yet a different legend.





St Helena and Ascension use the word "QUEEN" in their legend but do NOT spell out the "THE SECOND".  So, their version of the legend is unique.

 
« Last Edit: December 20, 2020, 12:31:29 AM by <k> »
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