UK: speculation about the 2023 Charles III regular circulation series

Started by <k>, November 25, 2022, 06:52:32 PM

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<k>

It has been traditional in the UK to issue a new design series for each new monarch.

If we look at precedents, the first UK effigy of Queen Elizabeth II was produced as the result of a closed competition.

Who knows how the reverse designs of the first coinage series were produced? Was this also via a closed competition?

The first designs for the decimal coin series were produced by 1963, via a closed competition. In 1964 the newly elected Labour government insisted that there must be a public competition. Christopher Ironside had won the closed competition, and he also won the subsequent public competition.

The subsequent effigies of the Queen that were used on the UK circulation coins were all the result of closed competitions, so far as I know. Please correct me if I am wrong.

The new circulation coin design series of 2008 was produced via an open competition.

So, those are the precedents.
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<k>

What about the forthcoming coin series? What will happen?

The first option is that we will keep the existing reverse designs.

This is unlikely and against all modern precedent.


The second option is that the existing designs are retained for a few months but then replaced.
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<k>

The third and most likely option is that 2023 will see a new design series.

After all, the new portrait of King Charles III was produced very quickly.

Was the new effigy the result of a closed competition? I do not know.


As for the new design series, will that be produced via a public or a closed competition?

Given the precedents, I imagine that the Royal Mint will hold a closed competition.
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<k>

If we do get a new design series, what can we expect?

Will the designs be thematic, or a heraldic, or a mixture of traditional allegorical and heraldic national symbols, such as Britannia and / or the lion / unicorn / thistle / leek, etc?

My guess is that King Charles III will have a say here. I imagine that he will lean towards traditional symbols.

I do not expect to see animals, buildings or ships on the new design series.
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<k>

The previous two reigns both had something special about their first coins.

King George VI issued two separate shilling coins: an English and a Scottish version.

He also issued two separate 3 pence coins: the small silver version and a new brass 12-sided version.


Elizabeth II had the abbreviation OMN: BRITT:  on her coins of 1953. That abbreviation was removed the following year.

It meant "OF ALL THE BRITAINS". This referred to the Commonwealth realms and was considered patronising and out of date.


Might we expect some such surprise with the coinage of the new king?

Will he suddenly decide to be "CAROLUS III", perhaps ? Probably not!
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<k>




I am still curious to know when Martin Jennings was assigned to create his portrait of King Charles III.

And also whether he was just one entrant in a closed competition.

I cannot find any precise information on this.

No doubt it will be disclosed next year, when the full set of new circulation coins is announced.
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<k>

From the December edition of Coin News (UK):

In line with the King's desire for sustainability, it was announced that all planned 2022 and 2023 dated coins bearing Elizabeth's portrait will still be released, including the first few of the 2023 Britannias. The King was supposedly closely involved with the production of his first coinage; at his request, mintage caps were removed until the end of the year to enable all who desire their own examples of his new coinage to be able to obtain them.


This suggests that the new circulation coin series has already been chosen. We shall see in 2023!
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Alan71

Or does it mean there will be two lots of coins for next year?  Sets with the Queen's portrait, and later sets with Charles's?  In 2008 (reverse changes) and 2015 (portrait change) they did two sets, with all coins circulating, but those were planned.

I hope we don't see coin sets (other than Britannias and a few others) with the Queen on but Australia have apparently already set that precedent.

<k>

Quote from: Alan71 on November 28, 2022, 04:32:48 PMOr does it mean there will be two lots of coins for next year?  Sets with the Queen's portrait, and later sets with Charles's?

I quote:

all planned 2022 and 2023 dated coins bearing Elizabeth's portrait will still be released

That does not of course state whether the planned 2023 coins include the regular circulation coins.

However, we will see in due course.


Quote from: Alan71 on November 28, 2022, 04:32:48 PMI hope we don't see coin sets (other than Britannias and a few others) with the Queen on but Australia have apparently already set that precedent.

Whatever happens, it will all be legal and according to precedent, so I don't worry about it.

If the 2023 circulation sets do appear with two different monarchs, that would be interesting for collectors in years to come. However, I do not know enough about the Royal Mint's procedures. When do they typically start minting circulation coins for the following year? Had they already started before the Queen's death?

You can be sure that procedures for after the Queen's death will have been in place for many years. In fact, they will have been updated yearly, in case the Queen suffered a fatal accident or fell victim to assassination by terrorists or whatever. So the authorities will have assessed the prospects of minting two circulation coin sets in a year and have procedures in place to deal with it or else prevent it. Similar procedures will be in place for Charles, as he is already rather old. Will he reign until his death, like the Queen, or will there come a point when he is happy to hand over to William?
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Alan71

Yes, I do recall that there was concern over what they would do if the Queen died between 1968 (when they started making bronze decimal coins dated 1971) and 1971.  I think that was revealed in 2001 under the 30-year rule.

Offa

Hopefully the tired and dated shield reverse designs will be consigned to history. British landmarks would be a good idea
All coins are equal but some are more equal than others

Alan71

The shield worked as a gimmick but very soon became boring, with the 1p and 20p suffering the most from it.  We've had 15 years of it but the previous designs had lasted up to 40 years.  A change of reign should be a good enough reason to change them but we'll see.  Not sure I'd bet too much against them retaining the current designs for a while longer (but please not 25 years!)

<k>

Look at the precedents: change of reign, change of design series.

And as Coin News reported: "The King was supposedly closely involved with the production of his first coinage".

Given his interest in architecture, let's hope for a few buildings.
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<k>

I think that the best time to show and issue the new reverse designs, in terms of publicity, would be around the time of the Coronation, which is scheduled for early May. The Royal Mint could announce it in January then build up expectations, without showing it at first.
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<k>

Quote from: <k> on November 29, 2022, 07:24:52 PMI think that the best time to show and issue the new reverse designs, in terms of publicity, would be around the time of the Coronation, which is scheduled for early May. The Royal Mint could announce it in January then build up expectations, without showing it at first.

Somebody has emailed me that they do not think that my idea is practical. However, it depends on how long it takes a new year's coins to get into circulation. When I look at the 'sticky' threads in this board, I see one called '2021 coins in circulation' but not one entitled '2022 coins in circulation'. Does that mean they have not yet appeared? After all, it is December already. Calling change-checkers: Alan71, Deeman, andyg.

And how are the UK's coins minted anyway, with regard to the year? Are coins dated 2022 being minted this December, but as soon as January comes, dies for 2023 will be used? Or are the new year's coins minted in advance?
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