The 2024 UK RNLI 50p has just been released, and it’s set to be a standout issue this year.
Given the RNLI’s revered status and the coin’s unique design, it’s going to be highly sought after by collectors.
We already know this coin is going to be incredibly popular. How? Just look at the engagement it received when we revealed it as part of the Annual Set this year.
So why has this UK 50p coin been released?
The United Kingdom celebrates a significant milestone in maritime history with the release of a special commemorative coin. The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI), renowned for its heroic lifesaving efforts, marks its 200th anniversary with a dedicated 50p coin. This release is a tribute to the bravery and dedication of RNLI volunteers over two centuries.
The 50p design
Click on the flashing points in the interactive image below to discover more about the designs and specifications.
The coin’s reverse, designed by John Bergdahl, features a striking depiction of the RNLI flag, gracefully encircled by a lifebuoy. The inscription “200 YEARS” and the dates “1824 – 2024” honour the bicentennial of the RNLI.
The obverse showcases the 1st portrait of King Charles III by Martin Jennings, surrounded by the inscription “CHARLES III • D • G • REX F • D • 50 PENCE • 2024 •”.
History of the RNLI
Since its inception in 1824, the RNLI has played a pivotal role in maritime rescue operations around the coasts of the UK and Ireland. Founded by Sir William Hillary, the RNLI was established out of a necessity to provide a dedicated lifesaving service, which was notably absent despite the high frequency of shipwrecks around the British Isles. The RNLI’s foundation marked the beginning of a noble mission to save lives at sea, a mission that has continued unwaveringly for nearly two centuries. As a charity funded primarily through donations, it has been instrumental in saving over 140,000 lives, thanks to the valour of its volunteers.
Given the popularity of the RNLI combined with the popularity of the UK 50p coins, it is certain our stocks will not last long.
The RNLI 50p range includes a variety of different specifications, including the Brilliant Uncirculated 50p, the Silver Proof Colour 50p, and the Gold Proof 50p.
But there is one that stands out of them all and has been selected as the ‘Writer’s Choice’… The RNLI Silver Proof Piedfort 50p.
And the reason is: the edition limit.
The UK 2024 RNLI Silver Proof Piedfort 50p – double the thickness, double the weight of a standard 50p – has an edition limit of JUST 1,824. It is over two times more limited than its standard silver counterpart.
50p coins are already the favourites amongst collectors. Now add Silver Proof, Piedfort, colour AND a remarkably low edition limit to it and it becomes a must-have.
The new year means one thing in the collecting world, new coins!
Each year, collectors eagerly anticipate the arrival of The Royal Mint’s Annual Set.
Featuring five brand-new commemorative designs, the coins celebrate some of the biggest anniversaries and events of the year.
Last year, the coins were issued for the first-time featuring King Charles III and as expected, all premium specifications sold out in a matter of hours.
Then, a little later in the year, the UK’s new circulating coin designs were revealed – again selling out and instigating a whole new wave of collectors.
2023 truly was a monumental year for coinage, and 2024 is likely to follow suit. So, let’s take a look at the 2024 coin designs…
The Royal National Lifeboat Institution, otherwise known as the RNLI, was founded over 200 years ago by Sir William Hillary. Ever since, crews and lifeguards have been working hard to save lives 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
The coin’s reverse design features some of the most recognisable RNLI symbols, with the flag in the centre surrounded by a life ring and rope.
British Olympians and Paralympians 50p
This year, the 2024 Olympics will take place in Paris, France – exactly 100 years since the city last hosted the games. The Paralympics will also be held in France for the first time, making the games the biggest event ever held in France. 202 competitors from Great Britain will participate in 17 sports, in the hopes of clinching Gold.
The coin itself features a geometric design of an Olympian and Paralympian set against the Union Jack, with a small Eiffel Tower at the bottom.
Winston Churchill £2
The first £2 coin in this year’s set, honours 150 years since the birth of famous politician, Winston Churchill.
Having led Britain to victory during the Second World War, Churchill served as Prime Minster twice. However, the design of this £2 coin takes us back to a younger Churchill, depicting him as a young man during his time in the Cavalry arm.
National Gallery £2
The National Gallery also celebrates its 200th anniversary on a UK £2 coin. Founded in 1824, the gallery was initially opened with the ambition of making art accessible for everyone.
Soon after, a dedicated building was commissioned and built in Trafalgar Square in 1838 – the very building that now features on the new £2 coin.
Today, the gallery holds over 2,300 paintings from renowned artists like Monet, da Vinci and Michelangelo.
Buckingham Palace £5
The final commemorative coin in the set features one of the most recognisable buildings in the world – Buckingham Palace. The official residence of all British monarchs since Queen Victoria, the palace is now the headquarters of King Charles III.
Each Brilliant Uncirculated and Silver Set will also come specially paired with the 2024 Definitive Coins. From the 1p to the £2, these coins saw a complete re-design in 2023 and are now available in the Annual Coin Sets for the first time since 2022.
How to secure yours
The 2024 Annual Coins are available in a variety of different specifications. From the official Royal Mint Brilliant Uncirculated Pack to the Base Proof edition with exclusive Royal Mint medal, to the strictly limited Silver Proof and Piedfort Editions.
Why is the Sixpence placed in Wedding Shoes and Christmas Puddings? Today we will explore some of the top questions surrounding the Sixpence coin, uncover the stories and traditions behind this tiny yet iconic coin.
1. What is a Sixpence Coin?
The Sixpence was once widely circulated in the United Kingdom and its former colonies. Worth 2.5p, it remained in circulation until 1980. The coin’s design and composition have evolved over the centuries, reflecting the changing faces of monarchs and the artistic trends of each era.
2. Why is the Sixpence Coin Associated with Weddings?
One of the most enduring traditions involving the Sixpence coin is its association with weddings. For many years, the father of the bride would slip a Sixpence into his daughter’s shoe before she walked down the aisle. The Sixpence stood for good luck, and to show that the father wished his daughter prosperity in her marriage.
3. What is the Meaning Behind the Rhyme “Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed, Something Blue, and a Silver Sixpence in Her Shoe”?
This famous wedding rhyme includes a set of superstitions and customs believed to bring good luck to the bride on her wedding day. The inclusion of a Sixpence in her shoe represents wealth and financial prosperity in the marriage.
4. What is the Sixpence Christmas Tradition?
Beyond weddings and everyday circulation, the Sixpence coin has found its way into another cherished tradition – Christmas puddings. Dating back to Victorian England, it became a popular custom to include a silver coin in the mixture when preparing the Christmas pudding. The thought behind this was not only to add a bit of festive surprise but also to give luck and prosperity to the person fortunate enough to find the coin in their serving of Christmas pudding.
5. Are Sixpence Coins Still in Circulation?
In the United Kingdom, Sixpence coins ceased to be legal tender in 1980. However, these coins are still cherished by collectors and are often found in antique markets and online auctions. The historical value and unique designs of these coins make them sought-after items for all collectors.