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Rarest coins from Queen Elizabeth II’s reign revealed – do you have a fortune in your piggy bank?

Nick Cheek
Written By:
Nick Cheek

A list of the most unique and exceptional coins to enter into circulation during the reign of Queen Elizabeth II has been published, as the first anniversary of her passing approaches.

Last year marked a new era for British coinage as the last coins bearing Queen Elizabeth II were removed, and the first coins featuring King Charles III were produced.

The Royal Mint has now revealed a list of the rarest coins produced during her reign. These coins are highly prized by collectors and can sell for hundreds of pounds on specialist sites or even online marketplaces such as eBay.

Queen Elizabeth II appeared on more UK coins than any other British monarch – with approximately 27 billion coins still in active circulation. The nation’s most collectible coin is the 50p, and over 100 different designs have appeared on the 50p piece since its introduction.

Some of the rarest coins minted during her Majesty’s reign include the 2009 Kew Gardens 50p, a 210,000 coinage run to celebrate Britain’s most famous botanical garden; as well as a selection of special alphabet 10 pence pieces from 2018 and 2019, of which under 100,000 were minted – indeed, for the Y, W and Z letters, only 63,000 were minted.

Huge coinage changes

Mark Loveridge, director of UK currency at The Royal Mint said: “2022 marked one of the biggest changes in coinage since decimalisation as we moved from the reign of Queen Elizabeth II to King Charles III.

“The coinage of Queen Elizabeth II spanned 70 years and special designs issued into circulation celebrated some of the biggest events in history. Although the 2022 mintage figures mark the last time that Queen Elizabeth II’s portrait will appear on new coins, over 27 billion of her coins will remain in circulation.

“Coin collecting remains a popular hobby in the UK and the coins of Queen Elizabeth II’s reign are particularly coveted. By sharing the list of rare designs we hope people will look closely at their coins – if they’re lucky they might find a piece of history.”