There will be a new coin in our purses from this March. The new 12-sided £1 coin will enter circulation on March 28 replacing the round £1 coin. The current £1 is being replaced for the first time in over thirty years because of its vulnerability to sophisticated counterfeiters. Approximately one in thirty £1 coins in circulation is a counterfeit. Read how to identify a fake £1 coin.
The existing £1 will be withdrawn on October 15, 2017. There will be a six-month period when the current £1 coin and the new £1 coin are in circulation at the same time. During this time, you can make payments with both coins.
The existing £1 will be withdrawn on October 15
How is the new £1 coin harder to counterfeit?
- Bimetallic – it is made of two metals. The outer ring is gold coloured (nickel-brass) and the inner ring is silver coloured (nickel-plated alloy)
- Latent image – it has an image like a hologram that changes from a ‘£’ symbol to the number '1' when the coin is seen from different angles
- Micro-lettering – it has very small lettering on the lower inside rim on both sides of the coin. One pound on the obverse “heads” side and the year of production on the reverse “tails” side, for example 2016 or 2017
- Milled edges – it has grooves on alternate sides
- Hidden high security feature – a high security feature is built into the coin to protect it from counterfeiting in the future.
The coin’s design
The reverse side of the coin, the ‘tails’, shows the English rose, the Welsh leek, the Scottish thistle and the Northern Irish shamrock emerging from one stem within a royal coronet. This was designed by David Pearce. David won a public design competition, of over 6,000 entries, at the age of 15. This was adapted by professional artist David Lawrence.
The fifth coin portrait of Her Majesty the Queen is featured on the coin’s ‘heads’ side. It was designed by Royal Mint coin designer Jody Clark. Jody is the first Royal Mint engraver to be chosen to create a royal coinage portrait in over 100 years. His design was selected from a number of anonymous submissions to a design competition.
The new £1 coins are produced by The Royal Mint in Llantrisant, South Wales.
Easier for those with sight problems to identify
The Royal Mint has consulted with the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) to assess any impact for the visually impaired in relation to identifying the new £1 coin. User testing showed that the 12 sides of the new £1 coin and the milled edges made it easier to identify.
What should I do with my existing £1 coins after legal tender status is removed?
From October 15 , the round £1 coin can continue to be deposited into your bank account at most high-street banks including RBS, NatWest, Ulster, HSBC, Barclays, Lloyds, Santander, Nationwide, Clydesdale, Yorkshire Bank, Halifax, Bank of Scotland and The Post Office.
It may be possible to exchange £1 coins at these banks and the Post Office provided you hold an account with them. Specific arrangements may vary from bank to bank, including deposit limits. It is recommended that you consult with your bank directly.