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30th Sep 2022

New King Charles coins unveiled and when you can get them

Steve Hopkins

People can expect the new coin to appear in their change from December

Coins featuring a portrait of King Charles III will gradually enter circulation from December and will appear on 50p coins first, The Royal Mint has said.

In keeping with tradition, the King’s portrait faces to the left, the opposite direction to the Queen.

A commemorative £5 coin has also been created and features two new portraits of the late monarch on the back.

Nicola Howell, chief commercial officer at the Royal Mint, said King Charles worked closely with sculptor Martin Jennings – and “personally approved the effigy”.

This was “to make sure there was a seamless empathetic way to end her majesty’s reign and to actually signal the new reign of a new king”.

The Latin inscription surrounding the effigy reads: “:: CHARLES III :: D :: G :: REX :: F :: D :: 5 POUNDS :: 2022” which translates to: “King Charles III, by the Grace of God, Defender of the Faith.”

Chris Barker, from the Royal Mint Museum, described the portrait as “dignified and graceful, which reflects his years of service”, Sky News reported.

He added: “I think if you look back on some of the portraits of Elizabeth – particularly her first portrait by Mary Gillick – it was much more idealised. “This one is much more of the man himself, of the individual, you see the lines in his face, the years of experience, and that humanity coming across.”

The reverse of the commemorative £5 coin features two new portraits of Queen Elizabeth II, showing a younger and older image of the monarch who died on September 8 and was farewelled on September 19.

The design was created by artist John Bergdahl in collaboration with the Royal Mint.

It will form part of a wider memorial coin collection.

Howell said customers will start to be able to receive the commemorative range from October and “then we expect the 50p memorial circulating coin to be appearing in people’s change probably from December”.

The reverse of the 50p features a design that originally appeared on the 1953 Coronation Crown and was struck to commemorate Queen Elizabeth II’s coronation at Westminster Abbey. It includes the four quarters of the Royal Arms depicted within a shield.

Between each shield is an emblem of the home nations: a rose, a thistle, a shamrock and a leek.

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