July 28, 2016, will be Helen Beatrix Potter’s 150th birthday. To mark the occasion Britain’s Royal Mint has released a limited edition commemorative 50 pence. The reverse design is the work of Royal Mint Engraver Emma Noble and has been endorsed by Frederick Warne & Co, owner of “The Tale of Peter Rabbit.”
The 27.30 mm, heptagonal coin is available as an 8.00 g BU cupronickel, an 8.00 g .925 fine silver proof, and a 15.50 g .750 fine gold proof. Mintages are unlimited, 7,750, and 2,500, respectively. In addition a 16.00 g .925 fine silver piedfort has been struck with a mintage of 2,500.
The gold and silver coins are accompanied by a booklet on Beatrix’s life, her talents and her legacy. The BU version is presented in a fold-out wallet, decorated in the style of Beatrix’s own illustrations, and telling the story of her life.
Beatrix Potter wrote about 30 books, the best known being her 23 children’s tales. But she was far more than a best-selling author and illustrator. She was a respected natural scientist and conservationist as well as a prize-winning breeder of Herdwick sheep. In 1942 she was named President-elect of The Herdwick Sheepbreeders’ Association, the first time a woman had ever been elected to that office. Regrettably she died before taking-up this role.
This article was originally printed in World Coin News.
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