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The day I took 800 coins to the sky in a WWII Spitfire

Last Saturday I had the opportunity to see the RAF’s most famous plane up close and personal. That’s because on the 24th March I drove up to the historic Duxford Aerodrome to have 800 of the brand new Spitfire £2 coins flown in an original WWII Spitfire.

I arrived at 9am but unfortunately the chance of flying was in doubt because of the poor visibility caused by low lying clouds. The rest of the morning was spent nervously looking at the sky waiting for enough visibility for the pilot to safely take the 74 year old warbird into the air.

Our pilot for the day was Flight Lieutenant Anthony Parkinson MBE, known as Parky. The delay caused by the weather gave me the opportunity to talk with Parky about his time in the RAF and how the Spitfire compares to the modern jets he has flown during his time with the RAF. You can see Parky discussing his career and the Spitfire in the video below.

The wait for take-off also gave me the opportunity to sit in the cockpit of the famous fighter plane and experience some of what it would have been like for the young pilots who sat in the same cockpit to defend Britain in the skies over 70 years ago.

Finally at 2.00pm the cloud cleared enough for a small pocket of visibility to take the Spitfire into the air. We quickly pushed the Spitfire out of the hanger and Parky secured the 800 Spitfire £2 coins into the wing bays which would have once held the plane’s armaments.

At 2.20 Parky prepared the plane for take-off. Standing a few yards from the plane whilst it’s famous Rolls Royce engine fired up was brilliant, and the Spitfire TD314 drew in a crowd nearby while it taxied along the runway.

Parky swiftly took the famous plane into the sky and gave me and the rest of the crowd a fly by. Despite the cloud cover it was still fantastic to see the Spitfire race through the sky at the hands of a former Red Arrows display pilot.

The brand new Spitfire £2 coin is a fantastic commemoration of the famous plane and I am grateful that I had the opportunity to mark the 100th anniversary of the RAF with such a fitting tribute.

Thank you to Ben Perkins, Flight Lieutenant Anthony Parkinson MBE and the rest of the team at Aerolegends for helping to take the Spitfire £2 coins to the sky and for giving me the opportunity to see this famous warbird in the flesh.


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Signed edition Silver Proof £2 Spitfire coin.

If you’re interested  

All 800 coins have now been sold. However, we will soon be flying the 4 times as limited ‘signed edition’ Silver Proof £2. Click here to pre-reserve yours now >>

Brand New British Isles 50p marks the Queen’s 65th Coronation Anniversary

This year, Her Majesty the Queen celebrates her Sapphire Coronation Anniversary – 65 years since she was crowned at Westminster Abbey in 1953.

As the world’s longest reigning living monarch, she will be the first monarch in British history to celebrate a Sapphire Coronation, an historic achievement to be recognised as part of her record-breaking reign.

ST Coronation 65th Oath CuNi BU 50p Coin Blog Image1 1000px - Brand New British Isles 50p marks the Queen's 65th Coronation Anniversary

Elizabeth ascended the throne at the age of 25, upon the death of her father, King George VI in 1952. After a year’s mourning period, she was crowned Queen in a coronation ceremony steeped with tradition. Millions tuned in to listen to the ceremony on the radio and, for the first time ever, the proceedings were able to be watched on live television.

In celebration of the Sapphire Coronation, a limited set of special commemorative 50p coins have just been officially approved by Buckingham Palace.

Fittingly, the first coin is engraved with the words of the Coronation Oath,

 

The things which I have here before promised, I will perform and keep. So help me God.

 

The other four 50p coins each feature a different element of the Coronation: The St Edwards Crown, The Orb, The Gold State Coach and The Imperial State Crown.

four coins - Brand New British Isles 50p marks the Queen's 65th Coronation Anniversary

The UK’s most collectable coins…

 

The 50p coin has rapidly become the UK’s most collectable coin, spurred on by the release of the Olympic 50p coins, the Platinum Wedding Anniversary and more recently, the incredible demand for the Beatrix Potter 50p coins.

Most importantly, each of the five coins in the Sapphire Coronation 50p Coin Set have been authorised by the Isle of Man Treasury, have full legal status AND a very limited number will enter circulation in the Isle of Man.

British Isles 50p coins like this rarely turn up in UK change, which is bound to make these some of the most sought-after circulating coins around.

ST Coronation 65th Oath Gold Proof 50p Coin Blog Image - Brand New British Isles 50p marks the Queen's 65th Coronation Anniversary

 

The coins are all available now from The Westminster Collection, struck to a range of specifications, from Brilliant Uncirculated through Silver Proof, right up to a stunning 22 Carat Gold piece.

 


 

Due to its very limited nature, we will contact you directly to discuss owning the Gold Proof 50p.

Please complete the form below:

 


If you’re interested…

sapphire coronation 300x208 - Brand New British Isles 50p marks the Queen's 65th Coronation Anniversary

 

The 50p Set to mark the Queen’s 65th Coronation anniversary is available to purchase in Superior Brilliant Uncirculated collector’s quality.

Order the Complete set here.

The political scandal that created the 18th century’s most interesting coin…

It is hard to imagine a scandal taking place today where the political leaders of our country are arrested for causing the financial markets to crash. But that is exactly what happened when the ‘South Sea Bubble’ burst.

The ‘South Sea Bubble’ was a political and financial scandal that led to the arrests of leading members of Parliament and the near collapse of the stock market. From this turmoil one of the 18th Century’s most interesting  coins was produced. Let me tell you how it happened…

The South Sea Bubble

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A trading label of the South Sea Company

The South Sea Company at the heart of the scandal was a trading company with a monopoly on trade in South America. The company was heavily linked with the government of the day, and a number of MPs owned large shares in the company.

Because of their shares in the company, members of the government began using phoney insider information to convince investors of the huge potential in South American trade, and therefore the profitability of the South Sea Company.

However, once investors realised that there was insider trading taking place, the company’s share price collapsed causing a catastrophic loss of money and property.

UK 1723 George I South Sea Shilling Blog painting 300x200 - The political scandal that created the 18th century’s most interesting coin…

Edward Matthew Ward’s depiction of the South Sea bubble (1846)

Frantic bankers and members of the gentry who had lost their life savings stormed Parliament and the Riot Act was read to restore order. An enquiry found that more than 500 members of Parliament had been involved in the crash and the Chancellor of the Exchequer was imprisoned.

 


The South Sea Company Shilling

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Reverse of the South Sea Shilling

On the brink of collapse, the South Sea Company luckily stumbled across a horde of silver in Indonesia and sold the precious metal to The Royal Mint.

The silver was minted into coins in 1723 with distinctive ‘SS’ and ‘C’ notations on the reverse. The proceeds from this silver helped enable the South Sea Company to recover from the scandal and ultimately continue operating for another century.

The shillings struck with this silver are now almost 300 years old and are a relic of a financial and political disaster which shook the whole country.


If you’re interested…

UK 1723 George I South Sea Shilling Blog box 300x200 - The political scandal that created the 18th century’s most interesting coin…

UK 1723 George I South Sea Shilling Blog ob 300x200 - The political scandal that created the 18th century’s most interesting coin…

Historic silver issues are extremely difficult to source, however we have a small stock of just 50 South Sea Shillings available for collectors. Click here to find out more >>