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Royal Mint Marks Birth of Royal Flying Corps with WWI Aviation 2017 UK £2 Coin

Aviation £2 coin

The Royal Mint is to continue its First World War ‘Outbreak to Armistice’ collection with the 2017 Aviation £2 coin, marking the contribution of aviators during the conflict. At the time of the outbreak of the First World War, few people believed that aircraft would play a major role. Hot-air balloons had been used for observation and reconnaissance for almost 100 years and it was thought planes would serve a similar purpose.

The Royal Flying Corps, the aviation branch of the British Army, began its life as an ‘eye in the air’, reporting on the positioning of enemy forces and providing a tactical advantage. It grew from a force of a few hundred aeroplanes in 1914 into a huge, independent air arm of thousands of combat and support aircraft. In 1918 the Royal Flying Corps became the Royal Air Force we know today and has defended the skies ever since.

Anne Jessopp, The Royal Mint’s Director of Consumer Coin, said:

“The Aviation £2 coin design recalls the brave and skilled work of the reconnaissance photography crews of the newly formed Royal Air Corps during the First World War. They played an important role in creating reliable maps and intelligence in unfamiliar and constantly changing landscapes.”

Aviation £2 coin in BU, Silver Bi Metalix and Gold

Design and Designer

The coin was designed by Henry Gray of agency tangerine design. The grandfather of tangerine director Dan Flashman flew reconnaissance over the trenches.

“In this design we see two airmen, a pilot and his observer of the Royal Flying Corps, in a Royal Aircraft Factory R.E.8. They are performing a reconnaissance flight over an area of the Battle of Arras in April, 1917. The land below the plane is shown as a map; this helps to strengthen the narrative of this particular moment in history.”

WWI Aviation commemorative coin info table, courtesy The Royal Mint UK

Precious metal commemorative editions of the Aviation £2 coin in Gold Proof, Silver Proof and Silver Proof Piedfort are available to purchase online at www.royalmint.com.


The Royal Mint
The Royal Minthttps://www.royalmint.com/
The Royal Mint has an unbroken history of minting British coinage dating back over 1,100 years. Based in the Tower of London for over 500 years, by 1812 the Mint had moved out of the Tower to premises on Tower Hill in London. In 1967, the building of a new Royal Mint began on its current site in South Wales, UK, to accommodate the minting of UK decimal coinage. Today, the Mint is the world’s largest export mint, supplying coins to the UK and overseas countries.

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