London 2012 Olympics

No stamp or golden post box for our latest Gold Medal Winner

Lizzy Yarnold’s gold in the Women’s Skeleton has written her name in to the annals of British Winter Olympics history.

It also sparked debate as Royal Mail confirmed that our latest gold medal winner would not receive the honour of appearing on a postage stamp or having a post box painted gold in her home town of Sevenoaks, Kent.

A one-off gesture

gold medal stamp - No stamp or golden post box for our latest Gold Medal Winner

The first ever Gold Medal Winners stamp to be issued, featuring Helen Glover and Heather Stanning.

Although each British Gold Medal winner in both the London 2012 Olympics and Paralympics received these honours, Royal Mail has insisted that the tributes were a one-off gesture intended for British gold medalists at their home games in 2012.

In a statement to Press Association Sport, it said:

“The UK hosted the Games and our athletes extraordinarily well. Because of our status as the host nation, Royal Mail chose to mark the achievement of our athletes through gold post boxes as well as stamps.

For the Winter Olympics 2014, Royal Mail will not be creating gold postboxes but we are exploring other ways of marking the achievements of our athletes, including creating a special postmark.”

What do you think?

Is Royal Mail wrong not to issue a stamp for our Gold medal winners in Sochi or paint a post box gold in their hometown – or both? Or is Royal Mail right, keeping it as a one-off gesture for London 2012? Vote below:


Why you should be Checking your Change

 I expect that, like me, you were brought up to “check your change”.  But it has never meant more than now.

chnage checker coins1 - Why you should be Checking your Change

Last year, the Royal Mint launched twenty-nine 50p coins into circulation, one for each of the Olympic disciplines.  The result: a nation suddenly keen to check the coins in their pocket, hoping to build a complete collection.

In 20 years in the coin business, it was the very first time I had seen people of all ages genuinely interested by the coins in their change.

But the story should not stop with the Olympic 50p coins.

In fact the Royal Mint has been varying £1 coin designs since the coin was very first issued 30 years ago.  Remarkably the 50p first saw a commemorative design in 1973, before they became a regular feature of the UK’s coinage during the 1990s.  Similarly, £2 coins were used for commemorative coins as early as 1986, well before the current bi-metallic coin, which went into circulation in 1997, with its first commemorative design being released in 1999 for the Rugby World Cup.

The only collection that will cost you nothing

changechecker - Why you should be Checking your ChangeOf course the joy of change collecting is that it is totally free.  Simply keep an eye on the coins in your change and very quickly you’ll own an historic collection of some the UK’s finest coin designs.

But now it is even easier to collect the coins in your pocket with the launch of www.changechecker.org.  This completely FREE site is available for mobiles, tablets and PC to help you collect your pocket change wherever you are.

Simply identify your coin by denomination and year to keep track of whether you already own it or not.  Plus, if it’s a spare, you can quickly and easily find someone to swap your coin with.  All without spending a penny (or any other denomination come to that).

Click here to visit www.changechecker.org.

Discover more about Change Checker with your 60 second guide.