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London Olympics' Commemorative Coins Being Hoarded by Collectors

Started by Bimat, July 05, 2012, 12:46:26 PM

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Collected coins could take £10m out of circulation

5 July 2012

Over £10m of sterling could disappear from circulation as coin collectors hoard commemorative 50p coins featuring London 2012 sporting designs.

The Royal Mint said more of these coins are being taken out of circulation by members of the public than any other commemorative coin released into circulation since decimilisation.

It said up to 3% of new 50p coins released into circulation would be removed by collectors or lost, but an audit carried out on the Royal Mint's behalf revealed that of the 29,363,613 Sports 50ps issued into circulation to date, more than 70% – or £10,277,264 – will be hoarded by coin collectors seeking a souvenir of London 2012.

The Royal Mint said this was around 67% above the usual level of removal and is set to break previous records of coins taken out of circulation.

A previous case was the commemorative Victoria Cross 50p issued in 2006 where of the 22 million released, more than 10 million disappeared from circulation – 48% above the expected level of removal for a standard 50p featuring Britannia.

The Royal Mint said that the more interesting the design and the smaller the number of coins issued, the higher the percentage likely to be removed from circulation.

The London 2012 coins were first revealed in October 2010, and the Sports 50ps are the first UK coins ever designed by members of the public. Featuring all 29 Olympic and Paralympic sports, designers came from across the country and ranged from an eight year old schoolgirl to a 75 year old former social worker.

Since they were launched the 29 coins have been released into the banking system, design by design, over the last 20 months. The final coins will enter the system in the autumn.

To encourage those who have taken up the challenge to collect all 29 coins, The Royal Mint has released a free collectors folder, available from its website,, for the price of postage and packaging.

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