The Royal Mint has unveiled a 50p coin commemorating the BBC’s centenary.
The new coin comes after King Charles’ effigy was unveiled last month, with the portrait of Charles set to gradually enter circulation on 50p coins from around December.
What will the coin look like?
Although the King’s effigy has already been unveiled, the BBC’s coin will feature an image of the late Queen as it was produced before her death in September and will not be re-struck in order to “minimise waste or unnecessary environmental impact”.
The coin’s depiction of the Queen is expected to create a “high demand” among collectors, a Royal Mint official said, and will be available to buy from the Royal Mint’s website for £11.
The coin pays tribute to the BBC’s global reach by showing a broadcasting mast emerging from the earth, and is inscribed with “inform, educate, entertain”. These are the values of the BBC set out by Lord Reith when he founded the organisation in 1922.
Rebecca Morgan, the Royal Mint’s director of collector services, said: “Coins are miniature pieces of art which tell the stories of our nation. We are delighted to be working with Britain’s leading national broadcaster to create a special 50p in recognition of their 100 years.
“An ever-present British institution for most people’s lives, the BBC has had a marked influence on our culture and broadcast some of the most extraordinary moments in British history. With the obverse side of the coin featuring the effigy of Her late Majesty Queen Elizabeth, we do anticipate a high demand for these coins from collectors.”
Meanwhile BBC director-general Tim Davie said the broadcaster was “honoured” by the commemorative coin, adding that the design “perfectly captures the BBC’s huge reach and impact”.
What will the King’s coin be like?
The King’s effigy has been created by sculptor Martin Jennings, and has been personally approved by Charles, the Royal Mint said. In keeping with tradition, the King’s portrait faces to the left, the opposite direction to Queen Elizabeth II.
Chris Barker from the Royal Mint Museum said: “Charles has followed that general tradition that we have in British coinage, going all the way back to Charles II actually, that the monarch faces in the opposite direction to their predecessor.”
He described the portrait as: “Dignified and graceful, which reflects his years of service.”
The Latin inscription surrounding the effigy reads: “• CHARLES III • D • G • REX • F • D • 5 POUNDS • 2022”. This translates to: “King Charles III, by the Grace of God, Defender of the Faith”.