THE Royal Mint has launched a new 50p coin featuring Scottish inventor John Logie Baird, who was the brains behind the television.
The commemorative coins go on sale today directly from the Royal Mint, and prices start at £10.
Currently, there are no plans for the coin to enter into circulation and we don’t know exactly how many have been minted.
This makes it difficult to predict how much the coins could be worth if you sold it online but last year an uncirculated 50p coin featuring Sherlock Holmes sold for £500 on eBay.
This means the latest coin could end up selling for a similar sum, although there’s no guarantee.
The John Logie Baird 50p is the third in the Innovation in Science series.
Astrophysicist Stephen Hawking and chemist Rosalind Franklin, who discovered the structure of DNA, have already been commemorated on 50ps.
Credited with inventing the first electromechanical television, Baird has been remembered on the coin with a design by artists Osborne Ross.
The reverse of the coin features the Crystal Palace mast, which was Baird’s former television station and transmitter.
There are five dates on the coin, excluding the 2021 issue date, marking significant moments in his life.
1888 marks the year he was born in Helensburgh, Scotland, while 1946 was the year he died.
He started studying electrical engineering at Glasgow’s Royal Technical College in 1925, while 1926 marks the first demonstration of analogue television.
And in 1928, the first transatlantic transmission was aired.
The coins are available to buy in a range of different metals, which affects how much the coins cost.
How to safely store valuable coins
HERE are some tricks to keep your valuable coins safe from toning:
- Store your coins in individual containers
- Put it in a clear, air tight holder that lets you see the coin from both sides
- Avoid putting them in clear plastic sandwich bags because they can still rub against each other an may cause scratches or marks
- Store your collection in a folder or album, although tarnishing may occur quicker than in an airtight container
- Keep them out of a damp environment. You can use silica gel to help prevent damp
- Wear clean, white gloves when handling the coins
- Steer clear of using PVC materials as it traps moisture and releases acidic gases which can damage the collection.
For example, the brilliantly uncirculated version is the cheapest and will set you back £10, while the most expensive gold proof costs a whopping £1,005.
Meanwhile, a silver proof costs £57.50 and a silver proof piedfort is priced at £100.
Baird’s grandson, Iain Baird worked on the coin with the Mint said the family was “extremely honoured” that his grandfather had been chosen to be honour on a coin.
Clare Maclennan, divisional director of commemorative coin at the Royal Mint added: “The design represents Baird’s accomplishments and the invention of broadcast transmission, which has shaped culture and entertainment as we know it today.
“It has been a pleasure and privilege to work with the Baird family to commemorate a true British icon and a pioneer of one of the greatest scientific discoveries of the twentieth century.”
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Reckon you’ve got a 50p coin that might be worth a small fortune? We’ve put together a roundup of the rarest and most valuable 50p coins so that you can check your change.