THE 50 PENCE COIN WORTH £120 – We often dismiss the change in our pockets but right now you might just want to be careful of the 50 pence coins you hand over when buying bits and bobs at your local store.
A particular 50 pence coin minted to celebrate the 250th anniversary of the Royal Botanic Gardens (Kew Gardens) now has a value some 200 times its face value; yes that’s correct, the 50 pence coin in your pocket might be one of the Royal Botanic anniversary coins which are now selling for up to £120 each.
The Kew Gardens 50p coin was originally minted in 2009 with some 210,000 being produced and now collectors are willing to pay significant sums in order to add them to their collection.
So why check your pockets? According to Royal Mint they estimate that approximately one in every three thousand people is likely to be carrying around one of the coins. Royal Mint went on to state that now collectors are acquiring these in greater numbers the coins will therefore become rare in general circulation and may even increase in value.
Currently there are a number of these 50 pence coins for sale on eBay with sellers asking for £120; there are some eBay sellers who indeed have a lot of interest in the coin which is resulting in a high volume of bidders that may well increase the price substantially.
The Kew Gardens 50 pence coin is rather unusual in terms of the numbers that were minted; at just 210,000 this makes them rare. If you compared other commemorative coins, such as the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) which consisted of 3.4 million coins, this puts the Kew Gardens into perspective of their rarity.
If you would like more information on 50 pence coins and their mintage check out the Royal Mint website; even from the perspective of a non-collector it is rather interesting to see the designs minted over the years.
So what does the Kew Gardens coin look like? The image below gives a perfect example and the Royal Mint describes the design as a coin depicting a pagoda encircled by a vine and accompanied by the dates 1759 and 2009 with the work ‘Kew’ at the base of the pagoda; the coin was designed by Christopher Le Brun.
You might be wondering why such a coin and indeed others are so valuable. Apart from the obvious, that being the restricted numbers available, you should also consider that each is almost a miniature work of art and therefore admired by collectors worldwide.
Check your pocket, drawers and whilst you’re at it down the back of the sofa for you could be sitting on a tidy sum of money.
Update: February 22, 2014 – Since writing this article yesterday reports have emerged that the average price people are now paying to get their hands on one of these rare Kew Garden 50 pence coins has jumped from £120 to £180 and some collectors have reported to have paid a staggering £500.
Again if you have one of these coins it might be worth you holding on to it as their value is expected to climb.