What is the world’s oldest naval ship still in commission?
I’ll give you a clue (beyond the one in the title). It’s now in its 245th year of service.
The answer is HMS Victory, probably the most famous ship in Britain.
I was surprised to hear that she is still part of the Royal Navy’s fleet, having never been officially decommissioned.
HMS Victory has been in dry dock for 100 years, but she is the flagship of the First Sea Lord, the military head of the Royal Navy.
Over 200 years ago, HMS Victory was the flagship of Vice Admiral Horatio Nelson, helping the British see off the might of the larger combined fleet of the French and Spanish during the Battle of Trafalgar.
Five-coin set honours HMS Victory for the first time ever
Now, this famous naval vessel is appearing on Silver 50p coins alongside Lord Nelson himself for the very first time as part of a very limited five-coin set.
And our entire edition limit of Silver 50p sets was taken aboard HMS Victory last month and placed in Nelson’s day cabin to soak up centuries of incredible history.
The five 50p designs feature the following:
- HMS Victory at full sail
- The ship’s stern
- Canons at fire
- A portrait of Vice Admiral Horatio Nelson
- Nelson’s final moments
Each coin is struck from .925 Sterling Silver to a Proof finish and features its design in full colour!
And the complete set includes the first Lord Nelson 50p coin!
Tiny edition limit: Just 400 sets available
Just 400 sets are available; a tiny edition limit. For some perspective, when The Royal Mint released a Silver Proof £5 celebrating Admiral Nelson they sold out of an edition limit of 30,000.
How long can 400 sets possibly last? Especially knowing that they have been aboard Victory…
Please don’t delay here or you will miss out.
By purchasing one of the HMS Victory Silver 50p Sets you will be helping to maintain this important piece of British naval history. £17.45 will be donated to the National Museum of the Royal Navy for each set sold.
Watch our video below where we explore HMS Victory and discuss this exciting new coin set!
You may also be interested in our blog on the HMS Victory Masterpiece Silver 5oz 50p — in a presentation alongside real wood from HMS Victory’s restoration.
For many it’s hard to believe that it’s been 40 years since the Falklands conflict took place.
It’s a conflict our nation remembers only too well. It was one of the first military endeavours that had been televised, with daily reports being broadcast to our screens, reports of heroic fighting and of course, sadly, casualties.
Indeed, it’s to all those that served our country in the Falklands that we’re proud to dedicate a superb set of new commemoratives – issued for the 40th anniversary.
I’d like to talk you through each of the designs, and in doing so tell the story of the Falklands conflict…
Our battleships crossing the Atlantic
In a move condemned by the United Nations, in 1976 Argentinian forces occupied the Falkland Islands and South Georgia. In the weeks that followed, islanders were forcibly deported.
In response, for the first time since the Second World War, all branches of the British armed forces were deployed and within days a British task force set sail across the Atlantic.
Troops landing on the Falkland Islands
The Task Force landed 4,000 troops in the East Falklands. Goose Green was the first settlement to be taken by British forces. British troops then face a difficult journey through tough terrain, enemy minefields, and hostile weather conditions.
British troops ‘yomping’ across difficult terrain on the Islands
The design of this commemorative pays homage to one of the most famous images from the conflict, taken by Royal Marines photographer Peter Holdgate, showing a Corporal with a Union flag fixed to his pack.
British aircraft patrolling the skies
British aircraft played a key role in the conflict, most famously with the Harrier jets and the Vulcan bomber – two planes that are still strong in British consciousness because of their important role in defending the Falklands.
Although at the start of the conflict Argentina seemed to have an advantage in the air with over 100 aircraft of varying types, it was the strategy of the British Air Force that meant the British pilots were able to beat the odds and take control of the skies.
Returning to a Hero’s welcome
British troops were eventually able to make their way home, with huge crowds gathering in Portsmouth and Southampton to welcome them back – a well deserved hero’s welcome on their return.
This BRAND NEW set of commemoratives tells the story of the conflict and comes complete in a presentation pack to display and store them for years to come. I hope that you agree that it’s a perfect tribute to this important moment in British military history.
Did you serve in the Falklands or have memories of family or friends that were involved? As part of our remembering of the conflict 40 years since the invasion, we’d love to hear your stories in the comments below.
If you’re interested…
2015 is set to be something of a momentous year for coin collectors, with five significant anniversaries to be commemorated next year. They are:
£2 – The 800th Anniversary of the Magna Carta
2015 marks 800 years since the signing of the Magna Carta – an agreement which forced King John to abide by the ancient laws and customs by which England had previously been governed. Literally translated as “Great Charter” it laid the foundations for modern democracy and the rights of English citizens. In fact, it is still cited in many legal cases to this day.
Perhaps surprisingly, this will be the first time that the Battle of Britain is commemorated on a United Kingdom coin. In the summer of 1940, Nazi Germany was advancing through Europe, but their failure to gain air superiority over the RAF in Britain was ultimately one of the turning points of the war.
£2 – 100th Anniversary of the First World War – Royal Navy
The second design in the series of First World War £2 coins pays tribute to the role of the Royal Navy. At the time, it was by far the most powerful navy in the world and was a major asset to Britain in defending coastal waters against the Germans.
Also making its debut on United Kingdom coinage for 2015 is the Battle of Waterloo. Fought by the Duke of Wellington and his allied armies against Napoleon Bonaparte of France in 1815, it was a defining moment in European history – ending 20 years of conflict in the continent.
£5 – 50th Anniversary of the Death of Winston Churchill
There are few Britons more worthy of commemoration than the wartime Prime Minister himself, Sir Winston Churchill. Following his death in 1965 he became the first person outside of the Royal family to be commemorated on a coin, and now, fifty years on, he is being honoured again on a new £5 coin.
Next year the Queen is due to become the longest reigning monarch in British history, and there will soon be a new portrait on our coins to honour her. With the final appearance of the long-standing effigy of Queen Elizabeth II by Ian Rank-Broadley FRBS and five very noteworthy anniversaries, it already looks like 2015 will be a truly landmark year for coin collectors.