Regarding the new "dateless" 20 pence coins mistakenly released by the Royal Mint, Peter Gaspar writes:
The new 20p mule, like all truly accidental mules, is very interesting. I write to correct Chris Hill who was quoted as saying that the previous UK mule was a 2 p piece of the 1980's. There was a more recent mule: the 1994 Bank of England proof gold two pound piece.
The normal base metal currency piece had its own obverse. For about half of the thousand or so gold proofs struck, an obverse die was mistakenly employed that was meant for a gold double sovereign with a St. George and the Dragon reverse. The standard catalog published by Spink includes this mule.
At the time of issue, the Mint sent a letter to purchasers of the gold proof version of the Bank of England two pound piece apologizing for the mistake and offering to replace the mule (not called that in the letter) with a piece with the intended obverse. I have not been able to learn how many purchasers of the mule accepted the Mint's offer to replace it.
Regarding the dateless 20 pence coin, Philip Mernick adds:
As it is undated, how do we know the missing date is 2009? The error came to light some time ago (only the publicity is recent) and they are more likely to be missing the date 2008 - the year when both old and new styles of coin were made.
I couldn't remember when I first heard about it, but this Daily Telegraph article contains a Royal Mint statement that the error occurred in 2008 If the fellow in the pub was offered £500 he should have taken it, when the hysteria dies down I reckon they will be worth about $20.
To read the Telegraph article, see: Customer handed 20p worth £7,000 in change for pint (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/foodanddrink/pubs
Dick Johnson adds:
It was to be expected. Once the word of the "dateless 20p" got out everyone in the U.K. is looking at their coins. Here is a story of a Bridgewater woman who found an error coin in her cash register some time ago, but is now looking for a buyer.
A LUCKY Bridgwater grandmother bagged a precious penny Ė and is now looking to make her fortune.
Tania Simmonite, from Bell Close, found an unusual one-pence piece in the till at her Say Cheese work place in the townís Cornhill market a few years ago.
Now, after reading about the keenly sought after dateless 20p pieces in her Mercury, Tania may sell her colourless 2003 coin to the highest bidder.
She told the Mercury: "I was really surprised when I found the penny in the till in work a few years ago.
"I phoned the Royal Mint who said they would look at it Ė and they confirmed it was genuine, sending me a letter telling me how it came about.
"But I havenít a clue what itís worth."
The Royal Mint explained the coinís appearance resulted from a minting error when it slipped past the copper-plating process.
It then somehow eluded the Royal Mintís inspection procedure and found its way into circulation.
To read the complete article, see: Bridgwater woman nets rare penny (www.bridgwatermercury.co.uk/news/4500083.
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