[Swimmer With Lines Across Face - [image reblogged from numismag.com]
Since 2016, more and more people have decided to take up coin collecting. Of course, much of this is down the launch of the first batch of Beatrix Potter coins - and all of the hype that accompanied them. And for some, being a numismatist will merely turn out to be a fleeting thing; a phase which passes after six months or so. Yet for others it will be the start of something which will become far large…
Proper full-on coin collecting is a very serious business indeed and it can also become proper expensive. And when I say this I am still referring to modern fifty pences and two pound coins. Obviously if were to branch off into Saxon or Roman coinage for instance then most new acquisition would cost you very big dollar indeed.
However, with over one hundred and forty different fifty pences and more than eighty two pound coins out there, this will usually be enough for most of us to concentrate on. Besides, even a few of these will leave one’s wallet bruised, battered, bleeding and begging for mercy. For example, a genuine original release Aquatics 50p (the fabled edition with lines across the face) will normally have a four digit price tag attached to it and there are plenty of other coins that reside quite comfortably in ‘Three-Figure-Ville’.
Coin collecting is fun, rewarding and extremely addictive. The buzz you get from coming across a rarity in your change really is second to none. And if you have ever been lucky enough to know how it feels to find a Kew Gardens fifty pence then you will completely understand this. Perhaps if more young people got into coins rather than drugs we would have a far less troubled society. They’d still get the rush… without any of the misery which heroin, crack and the like all have fitted as standard. Now there’s a thought.
There are of course, many different routes to take as a collector – even with fifty pences and two pound coins. Should you collect just commemorative releases? Or each of the definitives as well? And what about coinage from overseas?
Jersey, Guernsey, Gibraltar, The Falkland Isles and The Isle of Man…. all of these places have some beautiful designs in the same two denominations to consider as well. Some of what you decide to concentrate on will come down to personal choice, but budget will also play an important role. Deciding to collect something more specialised and then discovering you simply cannot afford to do so a little way down the line will surely end in frustration and disappointment. Research therefore is of paramount importance. A few hours of looking into the value of certain coins before embarking on your journey into numismatics will make things a whole lot clearer.
© Article and images (except where stated) copyright Mik Smith 2019