Description

The British decimal fifty pence (50p) coin – often pronounced fifty pee – is a unit of currency equaling one half of a pound sterling. Over the years, the coin has celebrated every aspect of British culture, including the stories behind the people and institutions that put the great into Great Britain. As the nation’s most collectable coin reaches a milestone moment, 50 years in circulation, The Royal Mint presented a special commemorative set to mark this momentous occasion.

These carefully curated coins showcase some of the signature designs that have graced the 50p during the last half century. Designs celebrating the first sub-four-minute mile, the Scouting movement, the Girl Guides and Kew Gardens join Christopher Ironside’s original seated Britannia.

Obverse

The fifth crowned portrait of HM Queen Elizabeth II facing right, wearing the George IV State Diadem and drop earrings.

The George IV State Diadem, officially the Diamond Diadem, is a type of crown that was made in 1820 for King George IV. The diadem is worn by queens and queens consort in procession to coronations and State Openings of Parliament. The piece of jewellery has been featured in paintings and on stamps and currency. It can be seen in the Queen's Gallery at Buckingham Palace.

ELIZABETH II DEI GRATIA REGINA FIDEI DEFENSATRIX means Elizabeth II, by the grace of God, Queen and Defender of the Faith.

Engraver: Jody Clark

·ELIZABETH II·D·G·REG·F·D·50 PENCE·2019
J.C

Reverse

Depicts the Great Pagoda encircled by a vine and accompanied by the dates "1759" and "2009", with the word "KEW" at the base of the pagoda.

Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew (brand name Kew) is an internationally important botanical research and education institution. The organisation manages botanic gardens at Kew in Richmond upon Thames in southwest London, and at Wakehurst Place, a National Trust property in Sussex which is home to an internationally important Millennium Seed Bank. Seed stored at the bank fulfils two functions: it provides an ex situ conservation resource and also facilitates research around the globe by acting as a repository for seed scientists.

In the south-east corner of Kew Gardens stands the Great Pagoda. It was designed by Sir William Chambers and completed in 1762 from a design in imitation of the Chinese Ta as a gift for Princess Augusta, the founder of the botanic gardens at Kew. It is a ten-storey octagon tower, standing at almost 50m and each level is 30cm narrower than the one below. It offered one of the earliest and finest bird’s eye views of London. At the time of its construction it was considered so unusual that people were unconvinced it would remain standing.

Each storey finishes with a projecting roof, after the Chinese manner, originally covered with ceramic tiles and adorned with large dragons; a story is still propagated that they were made of gold and were reputedly sold by George IV to settle his debts. In fact the dragons were made of wood painted gold, and simply rotted away with the ravages of time.

Engraver: Christopher Le Brun

1759 2009
Kew

Edge
Characteristics
Type Commemorative Issue (Non-circulating)
Material Cupronickel
Weight 8 g
Diameter 27.3 mm
Thickness -
Shape polygon
Sides 7
Alignment Medal
Mint
Royal Mint

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