The Royal coins that could net you a mint – from change worth £1k, to 'common' coin collectors can't bear to part with | The Sun

THEY say money can't buy you happiness, but there are some Royal coins you might have in your purse that could make you a mint – and who wouldn't be happy with that?

So, whether you're an avid coin collector or just looking to make a bob or two, you might feel pretty chipper if you have any of the coins below – and they aren't all as rare as you might think.

Daniel Smith, Collector Services Manager at The Royal Mint, says: “Gold sovereign coins (that's £1 coins) are amongst the most regal and sought after coins across the UK, and a firm favourite for investors and collectors.

"Sovereigns become even more desirable to own when there’s a rare change of design."

Here, Daniel and Kate Morgan from Change Checker share their insights into some of the designs that are currently most sought-after…

£800 collectors' item

They have a face value of £1, but there are coins from two specific years during the late Queen Elizabeth's reign could be worth significantly more.


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Daniel says: "During Queen Elizabeth II’s reign, the Sovereigns reverse design only changed six times – in 1989, 2002, 2005, 2012, 2017 and 2022 – and once during King Charles III’s reign so far.

"Some of the most valuable Queen Elizabeth II sovereigns are the 1989 and 2002 gold sovereign coins, due to their design features.

"The 2002 sovereign is currently worth approximately £800 on the secondary market, partly due to its special shield reverse design which commemorates Queen Elizabeth II’s golden jubilee.

"The design is similar to that used on sovereigns during the reign of Queen Victoria, Britain’s second longest reigning monarch."

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One grand coin

If you think that's impressive, the 1989 sovereign holds even greater value, according to Daniel.

He says: "It marks the 500th anniversary of the introduction of the sovereign during the reign of Henry VII, and the design replicates the style of the earlier Tudor coin.

"It shows a portrait of Queen Elizabeth II crowned and enthroned on the obverse [the side of a coin bearing the head or principal design] – the first and only time for Queen Elizabeth II to be portrayed this way on sovereigns.

"The beauty of the design means that it is currently holding a value in excess of £1,000."

Coronation coins

Of course, coins marking the Coronation of the late Queen Elizabeth in 1953 and King Charles earlier this year have proved very popular.

Since the death of Queen Elizabeth II, demand for coins and notes featuring her portrait have soared.

Change Checker follows the prices of UK coins based on eBay sales and uses the median sold price to create a tracker.

Kate says: "We’ve seen increased interest in the 1953 Coronation Crown since the passing of Queen Elizabeth II, with collectors hoping to own it alongside the new King Charles Coronation coins or complete their QEII coin collection.

"Then, the newest coin to enter circulation is the Coronation 50p.

"Issued to celebrate the King’s coronation, five million of these 50ps entered circulation on 10th August 2023.

"Interestingly, as a special issue for the Coronation, the collector version of the Coronation 50p issued earlier this year featured a crowned portrait of the King on the obverse, however the circulation version features an uncrowned portrait of King Charles.

"The very first King Charles III 50p to enter circulation was the Queen Elizabeth II Memoriam 50p, of which 4.9 million entered circulation in December 2022.

"Being the first circulating coin to feature the King, this coin is highly sought after by collectors and although it ranks as ‘common’ on our Scarcity Index, most collectors will be reluctant to part with it should they find it in their change."

Daniel adds: "More recently, His Majesty King Charles III’s commemorative Coronation coin has been hugely popular and a great opportunity for new collectors to start their collection.

"The Royal Mint has seen 70,000 new collectors purchasing their very first collectable coin since September 2023 following His Majesty appearing on UK coins for the first time.”

Charles' Coronation coin is currently selling for upwards of £2 on eBay.

Jubilee souvenirs

Royal commemorative coins struck by The Royal Mint will always be extremely popular among collectors.

Daniel says: "Most notable are those commemorating Queen Elizabeth II’s Jubilee years, including the 1977 Silver, 2002 Golden, 2012 Diamond, 2017 Sapphire and 2022 platinum.

Change Checker's Kate Morgan adds: "In terms of royal commemorative coins you can find in your change, the Platinum Jubilee 50p issued last year was the first ever royal 50p, and of course commemorated Queen Elizabeth’s incredible 70 year reign.

"Initially, 1.3 million Platinum Jubilee 50ps entered circulation in February 2022, followed by a further 1 million ahead of the Platinum Jubilee weekend in June 2022.

"The Royal Mint confirmed there would be a maximum mintage of 5,000,070 is demand allowed."

A royal engagement

Another coin that many collectors have their eye on marks King Charles' first wedding, to the late Princess Diana.

Kate says: "The 1981 Charles and Diane crown was the first coin issued in honour of our now King, so many are considering this as the first coin in their King Charles III collections.

"It’s definitely one worth keeping hold of if you have it in your collection."

The coin is currently selling for upwards of £3 on eBay.

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Of course, it's important to note you aren't guaranteed to fetch huge amounts if you do choose to sell your change.

The worth of a coin constantly varies based on factors like demand at the time, so always do your research.

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