A silver proof Kew Gardens 50p achieved ten times its estimate price of £40 at a Royal Mint auction this week, This is Money can reveal.
The coin sold for £400, despite some toning around the coin. Sovereign Rarities, which handled the auction, says 7,500 of these special edition coins were made.
They are different to the Kew Gardens 50p coins that can turn up in your change. Those are circulating coins that had a mintage of 210,000 – and can sell for less but still up to £100 on online marketplaces such as eBay.
Huge price: This Kew Gardens coin sold for £400 at an auction this week
It means those who potentially snapped up the special edition of coin in a collectors box back in 2009 when the coin was minted could be sitting on a tidy profit, especially if there is zero damage.
A rare Kew Gardens gold 50p coin also sold for an unexpected amount of £2,000 against a predicted estimate of £400-£600.
This had a low certificate number of 0019 and Sovereign Rarities says there was a limit of 1,000 made.
The Kew Gardens 50p joined circulation in 2009, to celebrate the 250th anniversary of London’s Kew Gardens.
Collector versions of the Kew Gardens 50p were made available in gold, silver and cupro-nickel from the Kew Gardens gift shop at the time of the anniversary and it is likely many are lying around in homes now.
The Kew Gardens coins were designed by Christopher Le Brun RA, one of the most influential artists to have emerged in Britain in the 1980s.
Gold hue: This special edition of the Kew Gardens 50p sold for a huge £2,000 at auction this week
Elsewhere, a William III Five Guinea with an Elephant and Castle mint mark sold for £155,000 after it was estimated to fetch between £35,000-£45,000 at the Royal Mint’s first ever historic coin auction in its 1,000 year history.
Instead of selling in the estimated range it beat its highest predicted price by £110,000 – an increase of 244 per cent from the highest predicated price of £45,000.
It was the highest lot price achieved in the sale held in Mayfair on Tuesday.
Pretty penny: This coin sold for £120,000 but it could’ve fetched a lot more
After much hype, the expected highlight of the auction, the 1839 ‘Una and the Lion’ five-pound gold coin (pictured above), described by some experts as the ‘most beautiful of all English coins’ failed to hit the higher end of its bidding region of £120,000-£150,000.
Instead it sold for at the lower end of the range for a respectable £120,000.
Despite this, it was one of the highest priced items out of the lot but the owners of the William III Five Guinea and the Charles II Five Guinea, which sold for £155,000 and £130,000 respectively, enjoyed a far better hammer price.
Many other coins including the Charles II Five Guinea, Henry VIII ‘George the Dragon’ and the Henry VIII Sovereign sold for well over their estimated prices.
Below are the results of some of the highest priced items out of the lot:
|Coin||Hammer price||Estimated price|
|William III Five Guinea||£155,000||£35,000- £45,000|
|Charles II Five Guinea||£130,000||£35,000-£45,000|
|Victoria Five Pound Una & Lion||£120,000||£120,000-£150,000|
|Charles II Five Guinea||£115,000||£25,000-£35,000|
|Henry VIII ‘George & Dragon’||£110,000||£60,000-£80,000|
|Henry VIII Sovereign||£65,000||£25,000-£35,000|
|Kew Gardens Gold 50p||£2,000||£400-£600|
|Kew Gardens Silver 50p||£400||£40|
The auction was initiated by The Royal Mint’s Collector Services division which was established in 2017 to trade in historic coins and ancillary products as well as offering authentications, valuations and sourcing of pre-decimal coins.
Royal Mint operates as a limited company owned solely by the Treasury.
The Mint partnered with coin specialists Sovereign Rarities for the event. It bought a stake in the company last year as it looked to capitalise on the growing interest in numismatics – more commonly known as coin collecting.
Coins: These were some of the lots that were up for auction on 25 September, 2018 in Mayfair
What should you do if you think you have a valuable coin?
If you do happen to stumble across an old coin or are lucky enough to inherit one it’s important to know that the Royal Mint does not currently purchase old coins or medals.
Speak to reputable dealers about your old coins to make sure you get a good deal
If you want to sell your coins the Royal Mint recommends that you contact a reputable coin dealer such as Sovereign Rarities or your local British Numismatic Trade Association (BNTA) member who can verify that your coin is not a fake and help to value it.
The Royal Mint can, however, value your coins through its authentication and valuation service.
If you happen to own gold, silver or platinum bullion coins the Royal Mint Bullion pledges to buy these at competitive rates, based on live precious metal market prices.
On its website The Royal Mint says: ‘The gold, silver or platinum which you sell to us does not have to be produced by The Royal Mint as we will gladly accept enquiries regarding coins and bars from other mints and refineries around the world.’
To find out more visit The Royal Mint’s sell page.
Elsewhere, you can also contact This is Money if you have something you believe to be interesting. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org