The Royal Mint has issued a two-coin set to mark the 50th anniversary of the death of Winston Churchill, one of history’s great figures. The Royal Mint’s newly released Winston Churchill 2015 Brilliant Uncirculated £5 coin is paired with an original Winston Churchill 1965 Memorial Crown in this special set that is sure to delight both collectors and Churchill enthusiasts.
One of the most renowned Britons of all time, Winston Churchill was twice Britain’s Prime Minister, and twice helped the United Kingdom through the dark days of war. He was a great leader, soldier and artist, and as a writer he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature. He was a Knight of the Garter, Companion to The Queen, and the first honorary citizen of the United States by Act of Congress. His thoughts and insights were respected both in and out of political office – this was the man who coined the term ‘Iron Curtain’ and warned the world of the grip of the Cold War. He was a brave soldier, even serving on the Western Front after vacating the prestigious post of First Lord of the Admiralty.
On the death of Winston Churchill in 1965 The Royal Mint issued a coin that became a classic, the essence of the great man captured by Oscar Nemon. In 2015, 50 years later, The Royal Mint has issued a second coin designed by Mark Richards FRBS, honouring Sir Winston Churchill as an individual – the only statesman ever to be commemorated on two coins created in his honour. The portrait of Churchill is instantly recognisable on the new coin, a man who was larger than life, almost impossible to capture in the usual confines of coin design.
Designer of the 2015 £5 coin, Mark Richards FRBS says: “I wanted to capture something of Winston Churchill’s intensity, to create an active portrait, a sense of the man that you may have come away with had you met him. I thought the portrait created for the memorial coin in 1965 by Oscar Nemon couldn’t be bettered, so though I much admired it, I wanted to start afresh. I decided to create an image that is larger than the field of the coin – because this was a larger than life man, there was so much more to him than can ever be captured in one portrait”.
The two coins are now paired together in this special edition set, which has a limited edition of 5,000
The Coins and their Designers
The designer of the 1965 Winston Churchill Memorial Crown, Oscar Nemon, was born in Croatia and moved to London in 1938. He worked from a studio outside Oxford, and sculpted many recognised figures including Her Majesty The Queen. His statue of Sir Winston Churchill stands in the Members Lobby of the House of Commons, its foot now burnished bright by many years of being touched ‘for luck’. Oscar Nemon created the crown struck in memory of the former Prime Minister in 1965.
Mark Richards FRBS, designer of the 2015 £5 coin, is a figure and portrait sculptor based in Shropshire. He read History of Art at Manchester University and trained in sculpture and drawing at The City and Guilds of London Art School. Mark worked for a number of sculpture companies before establishing himself as an independent sculptor in 1992. The designer created last year’s Queen Anne memorial coin and the £5 coin struck for the 90th birthday of the Duke of Edinburgh.
About The Royal Mint
The Royal Mint has an unbroken history of minting British coinage dating back over 1,000 years. By the late thirteenth century the organisation was based in the Tower of London, and remained there for over 500 years. By 1812 The Royal Mint had moved out of the Tower to premises on London’s Tower Hill. In 1967 the building of a new Royal Mint began on its current site in South Wales, UK.
While The Royal Mint’s finest traditions are always respected, it continually innovates in order to stay at the forefront of world minting, embracing the latest production techniques and technology in order to offer excellence to our clients across the globe. By underpinning our proud heritage with a highly progressive outlook, The Royal Mint produces coins that remain a byword for trust and reliability the world over.
There were estimated to be 28.9 billion UK coins in circulation at 31 March 2014 ,with a total face value of over £4 billion, all manufactured by The Royal Mint. In total, nearly 2 billion UK coins were issued during 2013-14.
As well as over 1,000 years of producing British coinage, The Royal Mint has long been trusted with the currencies of other countries. It has served more than 100 issuing authorities around the world and currently meets approximately 15% of global demand, making us the world’s leading export mint.
The Royal Mint has been making official military campaign medals since it was commissioned to make awards for soldiers who fought in the battle of Waterloo in 1815. The year 2012 was of particular significance for The Royal Mint’s medal-making team, with the manufacture of all 4,700 Victory Medals for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
The Royal Mint has recently introduced a new fineness of Britannia bullion coins and a highly-secure on-site bullion vault storage facility, building on the gold Sovereign’s long-standing reputation for integrity, accuracy. This positions The Royal Mint and its bullion products as a premium proposition in this marketplace.
In September 2014, The Royal Mint launched a new bullion trading website, www.royalmintbullion.com, enabling customers to buy, store and sell bullion coins at constantly updated prices directly from The Royal Mint quickly, effortlessly and securely, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
In April 2014, The Royal Mint unveiled plans to develop a purpose-built visitor centre at its headquarters in Llantrisant, South Wales. Construction is expected to be completed during 2016.