Only weeks since it was confirmed that a new £2 coin featuring Britannia will be issued later this year, we have more exciting news that another £2 coin is just around the corner.
Prior to release, any new UK coin specification is always announced by Royal Proclamation in the London Gazette, and their latest update has confirmed the unexpected new arrival.
But this is not going to be any ordinary £2 coin…
In fact this coin is unprecedented.
Although it will be legal tender and have a conventional denomination, it will be 38.6mm in diameter and struck in fine silver. Crucially, it will also be the UK’s first coin to be struck with a weight of 1.5 ounces.
It will be a £2 coin which is far removed from the bi-metallic versions which we know so well.
But of course, a £2 coin with a crown-sized diameter and purity of .999 fine silver is nothing new to collectors. After all, the Silver Britannia has been issued every year since 1997 with exactly those specifications.
The key difference with this new coin is its unusual weight. A 1.5 oz coin with the diameter of a £5 coin means we can expect this new coin to be approximately 1.5 times thicker than a normal commemorative £5 coin.
A traditional design
As worded in the Gazette, the reverse design of this new Silver coin will feature;
“three Lions passant guardant, being that quartering of Our Royal Arms”
In other words, the section of the Royal Arms Shield which appears on standard issue UK £1 coins – pictured here.
So the question is – why is this new commemorative £2 coin being issued?
A brand new coin specification is normally reserved for only the most significant of occasions. The Royal Baby is due in April so could it be in anticipation of the latest addition to the Royal family?
We will find out in due course, but for now we can only speculate and your guess is as good as ours!
The Royal Mint has confirmed that they will be issuing a commemorative coin for the new Royal Baby, but it will have a £5 denomination.
So the mystery remains as to why and when this new 1.5 oz silver coin will be released…