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Jul 20

Is your £2-coin worth more than you think?

Reading Time: 3 mins

Last month, the bi-metallic £2-coin turned 20 years old.

It was decided that the £2-coin would enter general circulation during a review of the UK coinage in 1994. The new coin was to replace the uni-metallic coins issued between 1986 and 1996 to commemorate special occasions.

The £2-coin was officially launched on 15 June 1998. There were two different versions, bearing two different profiles of Queen Elizabeth II – one by Raphael Maklouf and another by Ian Rank-Broadley – on the obverse side.

According to The Royal Mint, there is a common misconception that the £2-coin bearing the Raphael Maklouf portrait of the Queen (in which she is wearing a necklace), was made in very modest numbers and is therefore much rarer than the Rank-Broadly version. “However, since millions of these coins were minted this is simply not the case. The £2-coin is legal tender for any amount,” reads the Mint website.

Even though this might not be the case, there are a number of commemorative versions of these new £2-coins that are indeed quite rare and worth more than you might imagine.

Let’s take a look:


What makes a coin valuable?

Stack of £2 Coins

There are various factors that determine whether a coin is valuable or not, some may even be unique to different buyers.

However, the one thing that anyone in the coin collection industry can agree on is the fact that rare/scare coins are far more valuable than their more common counterparts. It’s kind of obvious.

Along with this, the physical condition of a coin is also very important. The less wear and tear – scratches, carbon spots, corrosion, dents – a coin has, the more valuable it is. The phrase ‘mint condition’ is testament to this, as it refers to pristine coins not previously circulated.

Interestingly enough, according to CoinWeek, age is one of the least important factors in determining a coin’s worth.


Which are the rarest £2-coins out there?

Pile of £2 Coins

Using a unique combination of mintage, collecting and swap data, has created a Scarcity Index for recent £2-coin issues.

Among the 37 ranked coins, the 2002 Commonwealth Games £2-coin came out tops.

2002 Commonwealth Games £2 Coins

Whilst almost 2.5-million £2-coins were issued for the Games, only the most eagle-eyed collectors fully understand the reason for their scarcity. You see, there are in fact four different coins. They can, however, only be identified by a hardly distinguishable cameo design representing each of the UK’s constituent nations: Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales and England.

2002 Commonwealth Games £2 Coins

The four different versions of these coins take up the top four places on the Scarcity Index for the first quarter of 2018. Currently, the Wales coin is in the number one position, followed by Scotland, England and Northern Ireland.

Among the other £2 coins listed on the scarcity index, Changechecker notes that the Florence Nightingale and Paddington Station coins are the strongest performing. Each moved up seven places from the previous quarter.

The First World War Centenary (Army) is the worst performing coin, moving down three places.


How much can you get for these coins?

£2 Coins in hands

The Scarcity Index does not necessarily equate to value but it is certainly an effective indicator.  For example, in the first quarter of 2017, the Commonwealth Games Northern Ireland £2 coin topped the list and commanded a premium of 15 to 20 times face value on eBay.

Similarly, The Sun reports that a 2002 Commonwealth Games Wales coin recently fetched £40 on eBay.

Lucky enough to have well-preserved versions of all four these coins in your possession? You could even sell them as a set for as much as £80 on eBay!

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1 year ago

I love looking at the pictures on the coins that I have and do save ones that are attractive to me. I think they are rather beautiful.

2 years ago

Interesting, I’ll keep an eye on my coins now.

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