The Royal Mint has unveiled the largest ever coin in its 1,135-year history, a gold-plated piece with a hefty weight and an even heftier price tag.
The £10,000 gold proof coin is a commemorative piece of work weighing a whopping 10kg, 1,250 times the weight of a standard 50p piece, with a diameter of 20cm.
One of the Mint’s so-called ‘masterworks’, it features 10 of the Queen’s ‘Beasts’, including a lion, a griffin, a falcon and a unicorn, coins displaying each of which have previously been released since 2017.
The special ‘Queen’s Beats’ coin is the largest created by the Mint in its history, which stretches back to 886
They are based on 10 stone statues which lined the route to Westminster Abbey during the Queen’s coronation in 1953.
This is the first time all 10 have appeared on one coin, with just one copy of the 10kg version, which took 400 hours to make, being created by the Mint.
It has already been snapped up by a collector who paid a ‘six figure’ sum for the one-of-a-kind coin.
Although the Mint failed to disclose the exact sales figure, given the prices the Mint has sold similar coins for, it could potentially have been flogged for as much as £700,000.
This is because the Mint is also releasing a limited number of gold proof coins weighing slightly less, with 2kg, 1kg, 5oz and 1oz versions also available.
However, they would still set an aspiring collector back a chunk of change, as they are retailing for £139,200, £63,380, £10,525 and £2,315, respectively.
With the 2kg coin twice the size of the 1kg and selling for 2.2 times as much, the price of the 10kg version would be £696,000 if the Mint charged five times the £139,200 sales price for it.
The Queen’s Beasts 2021 UK £5 Brilliant Uncirculated coin
The Queen’s Beasts 2021 UK 1oz Gold Proof coin
The Queen’s Beasts 2021 UK 5oz Gold Proof coin
The Queen’s Beasts 2021 UK Gold Proof 1kg coin
The Queen’s Beasts 2021 UK Gold Proof 2kg coin
The Queen’s Beasts 2021 UK Gold Proof 10kg coin
Source: The Royal Mint
There are just four 2kg versions available, 16 1kg and 135 5oz, the Mint said. Four silver versions, with weights ranging from 1oz to 1kg and prices from £92.50 to £2,270 are also being released.
And for those with slightly shorter pockets and slightly less storage space, an unlimited number of brilliant uncirculated £5 coin versions of the design will be available for £13.
The 10kg is the latest, and one of the most eye-catching, examples of the Royal Mint’s increasing pivot towards striking luxury bullion bars and coins for private collectors, as it is expected to mint fewer circulating coins as cash usage falls.
The £10,000 commemorative coin was sold to a private buyer for a ‘six figure sum’, the Mint said
Other high-profile examples include the 18-carat gold credit card it created alongside Mastercard, which were selling for £18,750.
The Royal Mint’s precious metals division, which handles gold, silver and platinum bullion sales, saw revenue increase 46 per cent in 2019-20 to £356.9million.
Its popularity has continued throughout the pandemic, with unprecedented demand for precious metals over the last 12 months.
However, such demand from gold-hungry collectors and investors has put it under strain, with an investigation by This is Money revealing customers being billed for out-of-stock items and having problems with the deliveries of their goods.
It took 400 hours to make and displays 10 beasts around it, including a dragon, lion and griffin
The Mint previously said it was investigating issues with its couriers.
The Royal Mint’s Clare McLennan said of the 10kg coin: ‘It is the latest in our “Masterworks” series which offer unique works of art for collectors, exclusively from The Royal Mint.
‘The Royal Mint’s “Queen’s Beasts” commemorative coin collection has grown in popularity since the first beast was introduced in 2017 and has become a firm favourite amongst coin collectors across the globe.
‘This coin sets a new standard for minting – combining centuries old techniques with innovative technology to create a unique and beautiful work of art.
‘It is the largest coin ever created by The Royal Mint, and is testament to the expertise, craftsmanship and skill of our team.’
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