The Numismatic Bibliomania Society



The E-Sylum: Volume 12, Number 27, July 5, 2009, Article 9


The biggest news of the week seems to be the dateless coins accidentally released by the Royal Mint. Several E-Sylum subscribers, including Charlie Davis and Dick Hanscom forwarded articles. Here are excerpts from a few of the several articles published this week. -Editor
A rare error at the Royal Mint means that tens of thousands of the coins produced earlier this year don't have 2009 stamped on them. Coin experts say the lack of a date makes them worth £50 each, and potentially much more in future.

The blunder occurred after a redesign of the 20p piece. The Mint does not know exactly how many undated coins were produced and released into circulation, but estimates range between 50,000 and 200,000. This is the first undated British coin to enter circulation in more than 300 years - the last occasion was 1672, when Charles II was on the throne

UK Dateless 2009 20 Pence

The Royal Mint's usually impeccable quality control somehow slipped up and the so-called 'mule' escaped into circulation. A 'mule' is a coin that has mismatched sides - a reference to the mule being a mismatch of a horse and donkey. The change of the 20p design

However, thousands of coins were minted using the old version of the Queen's head, which does not have the year date, and the new version of the tails side, which also does not have a date.

To read the Daily Mail article, see: Have you got a 20p worth £50 in your pocket? Thousands of undated coins produced in Royal Mint blunder (

Why sell to a coin dealer for £50 when someone on eBay will pay more? Other articles note that the coins have apparently traded on eBay for much higher sums. I wonder if these are legitimate transactions or shill bidding designed to boost the price level by others who have some to sell. -Editor
Subway 20 Pence pic 2. PEOPLE across Southport will be scouring for loose change after a student from Kew found a rare 20p coin Ė which could be worth more than £7,000!

Amy Cowperthwaite, who works at Subway on Eastbank Street, found the coin in the till, when she came into work for her eight-hour shift on Tuesday morning.

A rare error at the Royal Mint means that tens of thousands of the 20p coins produced earlier this year donít have 2009 stamped on them.

Coin experts at the London Mint Office say the lack of a date makes them worth £50 each, but auction site eBay has seen thousands of people posting their rare coins, hoping to make a mint, with one fetching the hefty price of £7,100.

Team leader Amy said: "My mum had shown me an article about the coins in the paper and when I went into work the next morning, I thought it would be funny to see if we had any.

"I must have only searched about two bags when I found one without the date. We searched about £150 of bags but we didnít find any more."

To read the complete Southport Visitor article, see: Southport student hopes to cash in with undated 20p coin (

A more balanced article appeared in The Independent -Editor
It was an offer which had people across the country rummaging in their pockets for loose change: a specialist dealer in rare coins willing to give £50 to anyone who sent in a 20p piece minted without a date.

But it turns out that the seemingly generous offer, which had Britons scouring their wallets and purses in the hope of finding one of the elusive coins, is one that savvy consumers should refuse.

Several specialist coin dealers told The Independent yesterday that the 20p pieces could be worth up to £300 within five or 10 years, especially if they were kept in good condition and turn out to be particularly scarce.

The £50 offer was made by a privately owned company called the London Mint Office, which has no connection to the Royal Mint.

Chris Perkins, a coin specialist and author of the book Check Your Change, said he first became aware of the faulty 20p pieces at the end of 2008, but that they had largely escaped the attention of the general public until now. He owns two of the coins himself, for which he paid between £30 and £40 each, but added that their future value depended "on the hype" surrounding them.

"What I expect the London Mint Company will do is hype it up massively and then start knocking them out for £100 or £150," he said. "Poor old ladies who don't know much about it will be ones that buy them."

To read the complete article, see: Why 20p in the hand may be worth £300 (

Wayne Homren, Editor

NBS ( Web

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