100 years ago this year, at 11 o’clock on 11th of November, the guns of war finally fell silent. The First World War was over.
While many fathers, sons, uncles and brothers came home, millions lay where they fell, on the Battlefields of Europe. Those who were lucky enough to be identified were placed in makeshift graves, often only identified by a rifle placed in the earth with his steel helmet placed on top as a final memorial.
To commemorate the Armistice Centenary, The Royal Canadian Mint have issued a remarkable new coin that honours each and every fallen soldier.
Struck in the shape of a WWI Brodie Helmet, it is more deeply curved surface than any other concave or convex-shaped coin I’ve seen before. The design is so unique in fact, that the Mint have kept the minting technique a closely guarded secret.
Although the original helmet would have been cast from Steel, this coin has been struck in the very finest .9999 or “four nines” silver, this is the purest grade of silver available. The Royal Canadian Mint is one of the very few Mints in the world with enough minting expertise able to strike coins with this incredible high relief finish. It’s an exceptional feat of craftsmanship.
What’s more the attention to detail is outstanding, each coin has been given a final antique finish and there are even engraved cracks and markings which complete the helmet’s battle-worn appearance. A reminder of the hardships endured by those who fought.
The amount of 2018 Silver ‘Helmet-Shaped’ coins available is very low. A worldwide edition limit of just 6,500 has been set by the Mint, but of course many of these won’t even make it out of Canada. Without any doubt, this has to be one of the most collectable issues ever struck.
The First World War will always be known as one of Man Kind’s darkest hours but poignant issues like this one allow us to remember those who have made the ultimate sacrifice.
If you’re interested…
We have just 500 WWI Lest We Forget Silver ‘Helmet-Shaped’ coins available for UK collectors, but to get one you’ll have to act quickly.
Each year, The Royal Mint marks important British anniversaries, events or accomplishments on our coins and today we are pleased to reveal UK’s new coin designs for 2017.
Scroll down and I’m sure you’ll agree 2017 is set to be another significant year for coin collectors, with some exceptional designs that are sure to look resplendent when struck to the ‘collector’s favourite’ Proof finish…
The Sir Isaac Newton 50p
The 50p coin commemorates the revolutionary scientific and mathematical genius, Sir Isaac Newton and his remarkable legacy. He discovered the laws of gravity and motion and remains one of the most famous men in history. This coin really needs to be seen in real life as the concentric design cleverly catches the light differently from every angle.
The Jane Austen £2 Coin
2017 sees the 200th anniversary of Jane Austen’s death – and this £2 has been specially designed to commemorate one of the most famous authors of all time. Featuring an unusual ‘cameo’ design and Austen’s signature, this coin is sure to be highly sought-after.
The First World War Aviation £2 Coin
The latest in The Royal Mint’s series of two pound coins commemorating World War I, this particular issue pays tribute to the role of the air force in the conflict. Designed by tangerine the striking aerial perspective is a first for a UK £2 coin.
The House of Windsor £5 Coin
100 years of Royal tradition are honoured with this exceptional £5 coin – commemorating the Centenary of the House of Windsor. In 1917 King George V changed the name of the British Royal Family from Saxe-Coburg and Gotha to the now familiar Windsor. The coin’s pleasingly traditional design features Windsor Castle.
The King Canute £5 Coin
In a nod to Britain’s storied history, the second 2017 £5 coin marks the 1,000th anniversary of King Canute’s accession to the throne. Most famous for his attempts to prove his power by turning back the tide, Canute is also hailed as the first ‘king of all England.’
Some of these designs are really exceptional, and they are certain to become more sought-after in years to come. Which is your favourite? Let us know in the comments!
If you’re interested…
You can now own all the new 2017 coins in the DateStamp™ UK Specimen Year Set. Each coin has been struck to Brilliant Uncirculated quality and encapsulated alongside a 1st Class Stamp officially postmarked by Royal Mail with the issue date – 1/1/2017. Click here for more details…
The Westminster Collection has reached an incredible fundraising milestone having raised £500,000 for The Royal British Legion.
The Westminster Collection has raised the staggering amount since 2008 through the sale of commemorative remembrance-themed coins, honouring the lives of those who made the ultimate sacrifice in service to their country.
This year a special limited edition centenary £5 proof coin has been issued to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Battle of the Somme
The Battle of the Somme Centenary Proof Coin is the only Proof £5 Coin commemorating the Battle of the Somme issued in support of the Legion available anywhere in the world,
Stephen Allen, The Westminster Collection’s Chairman, said
“My own family has a close personal history with World War One and we wanted to create unique products which could be passed on to children or grandchildren, to make sure this terrible conflict is never forgotten.”
And the partnership between The Westminster Collection and the Legion is to continue with the announcement of a new three-year partnership.
Stephen added: “Though we have been working in partnership with The Royal British Legion since 2004, the first Poppy Coin came about in 2008 as a way to commemorate the 90th anniversary of the end of the First World War.
“We are delighted that the partnership has continued to grow.”
Claire Rowcliffe, Head of Regional Fundraising at The Royal British Legion, said: “We are extremely proud of our long-term partnership with The Westminster Collection.
“The Westminster Collection is a family business which shares our commitment to supporting the entire Service community; whether it’s helping veterans to remain independent in their homes, offering dementia support and employment or compensation advice, or ensuring people have access to the benefits they deserve.
“Raising £500,000 for the Legion is a truly incredible fundraising milestone. The funds have enabled us to support the memory of the fallen, as well as the future of the living.”
Own the Battle of the Somme Centenary Proof Coin for just £25…
The Battle of the Somme coin has been issued to pay tribute to the 100th Anniversary of the Somme. Designed with the Somme battlefields in mind, the reverse features a masterfully printed and haunting poppy field with an engraved scene depicting soldiers going ‘over the top’ into battle.
Click here to secure your coin for just £25 (+p&p) – with a donation going directly to the Legion’s work.
Some examples of how The Royal British Legion supports the Armed Services community:
Care Homes – The Legion has six care homes to provide short and long term care for serving and ex-Service people and their dependants. Situated around the country, they offer a wide range of services including four with specialist dementia care. Care home communities include men and women of varied ages and abilities, and because these homes are exclusive to ex-Service people and their dependants, there is a unique camaraderie.
Break Centres – they offer much-needed breaks to ex-Service and serving personnel and their families, who may be recovering from an illness, bereavement or other life-affecting event. The Legion have four Break Centres located in prime locations around the country.
Handy Van Service – they provide essential and critical support to ex-service people who are unable to carry out household repairs or small jobs, helping them to remain independent in their own homes. The team of trusted handy people are also fully trained caseworkers enabling them to look out for other issues and people at risk in order to flag to the wider welfare team.
Benefits and Money Advice – they offer a confidential, face-to-face Benefits and Money Advice Service to help people manage their finances, including assisting them with making claims for state benefits and also dealing with money problems including debt.
Civvy Street – This service provides a range of information and advice on resettlement, learning and work. Civvy Street is designed to assist in-Service families, armed forces leavers and the veterans’ community adjust to civilian life and kick-start a new career.