News & Blog

Could you have been one of the greats? It's competition time......

Posted on Fri, 29 May 2009 by Phil Mussell - General News, Coin News

Do you think you could have been a coin designer? Do you think you could have done better at Una and The Lion, the Gothic Crown or the Wren farthing? Do you think your design would have gone down in history? Well now's your chance to find out!

Thanks once again to the generosity of reader Geoff Simm you have the chance to show the world how you would have done things - and have the chance to win some serious money whilst doing it!

We are offering readers the chance to re-design a “British” coin (for this competition that term is defined as English, Scottish or pre-1928 Irish)- any coin at all - from the depths of numismatic history right up to the present day. The only criteria being that it must be recognised as a coin as opposed to a medallion or medal - i.e. it must be British in origin and have a recognised denomination. So patterns (Una and the Lion, the three Graces, the Petition Crown etc) are acceptable but art medal/military medals are not.

There are three categories - for gold, silver and copper/bronze coins (for the sake of the competition £1 and £2 coins will be judged as “gold” and the brass threepenny bit as copper/bronze) with the prize breakdown as follows - £250 to the best entry in any category with two further prizes of £150 to the winners of the remaining categories. There will also be two further prizes of £150 and £100 to the best and second best junior (under18) entry (in any category) whose entry was not judged an overall category winner. Juniors may, of course, win any of the open categories so it’s possible we could have five winners all under 18!

The rules are simple - redesign a coin as you think it ought to have been issued and send it into us by September 30 - that way we can have some of your ideas on our table at Coinex for the numismatic world to see! You can enter with as many different designs for as many different coins as you like (or indeed lots of different designs for the same coin) - just make sure it’s obvious to us what coins they are! And don’t think you have to stick to convention - if you don’t want the decimal 50p to be seven sided then don’t make it seven sided; if you felt that the shilling should have been triangular or the half crown a semi-circle, quite literally “half a crown”, then so be it - but be aware we will be judging your entries as practical items for every day use - and ones that could theoretically have been struck - so please, no illogical shapes or intricate detail that would be impossible to duplicate in miniature!

So get your thinking caps on, get your pens and paper out and get designing - and please don’t worry if you’re not a fantastic artist or designer, it doesn’t matter that your sense of perspective is slightly ropey or that your can’t draw much more than a stick figure or two - we won’t actually be sending any of these to the Royal Mint for consideration so you don’t need to be a Pistrucci, Wyon or Gillick - just do you best!

Good luck!