I’m a coin expert – six little-known designs to spot in your change that could be worth up to £380 | The Sun

YOU could be quids in if you're able to spot these little-known designs in your spare change.

There's a chance the small coins in your change might be worth a big fortune.

Rare coins are known to pick up large sums of money.

If you discover a sought-after coin in your change, you can make money on it by selling them at auction, either online or in person, or through a dealer.

There are some coins which are known to fetch large sums of cash, such as the Kew Gardens 50p and the commemorative 50p coins minted to mark the London 2012 games.

But there are also lesser-known designs that are worth keeping an eye out for.


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The price of a coin varies based on things like demand at the time and how common it is.

It's important to remember that you aren't guaranteed to fetch huge amounts if you do choose to sell your change.

Anyone can list a coin on eBay and charge whatever amount they wish, but it's only ever worth what someone is willing to pay.

By checking the recently sold items you will get a more accurate indication of what people are willing to pay for a specific coin.

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The Sun spoke to expert Kate Morgan from Change Checker to find out the less familiar designs you should be keeping an eye out for.

If you managed to sell all of the coins mentioned below for their top value, you could make up to £382.

Undated 20p – £70

The undated 20p is known as the "holy grail of change collecting", according to Kate.

Collectors have been known to search far and wide for the valuable coin ever since it entered circulation in 2008.

Back then, The Royal Mint decided to change the positioning of the date on every 20p piece, moving it from the back to the front.

But in an accidental error, a batch of between 50,000 and 250,000 coins was released without any date at all.

Kate said: "The undated 20p became the first coin in 300 years to enter circulation without a date, making it highly sought after by collectors."

We checked eBay and found that one of these error coins sold for £69 on June 4.

While another sold for £65 on May 29, and a third for £65 on May 26.

Battle of Britain 50p – £2

In 2015, a 50p coin was issued to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the Battle of Britain.

Sculptor Gary Breeze illustrated the limited edition coins with a nod to the heroic Few and squadrons of Spitfires in the air.

It depicts three airmen running to their plans with enemy aircraft overhead.

The coin was also reissued in 2019 to celebrate British military history.

While there are almost six million of these coins in circulation, their design often goes under the radar.

A circulated Battle of Britain coin sold for £1.99 on eBay on June 5.

While this might not seem like much, it's still almost four times its original value.

£2 Inverted Britannia effigy – £125

A small number of 2015 Britannia £2 coins were minted with the Queen's head upside down.

They accidentally entered circulation and they could now be worth a small fortune.

Kate said: "The Queen's head is offset by about 150 degrees compared to the Britannia design on the other side.

"It's thought that the error was caused by a loose die rotating during the striking process."

The coin has a mintage figure of just 650,000, making it one of the scarcest in circulation.

"It's estimated that as few as one in 200 – or approximately 3,250 – of them feature the inverted effigy", Kate added.

When The Sun checked eBay, we found two recent examples – one from May 30 and another from March 25 – when they sold for £125.

Navy £2 with ‘flag’ error – £16

There are two different design variations of the 2015 Navy £2 coin that were released into circulation.

The original Navy £2 design show the coin without any markings on the top right of the mast, while the other appears to have a flag flying.

Kate said: Collectors speculated that two different designs were struck, but it was later confirmed as a striking error caused by a cracked die."

It is unknown how many of these error coins are in circulation, but Kate says it is worth checking the ones in your collection.

The worth of these coins varies across eBay, with one going for a fiver on May 23 and another selling for £15.85 on May 22.

Sir Isaac Newton 50p – £14

The Sir Isaac Newton 50p was first issued in 2017 to mark the 375th anniversary of the famous scientist's birth.

But eagle-eyed collectors soon noticed something a little different on some of their 50ps.

Kate said: "Several collectors reported finding an error on the obverse where several extra lines appeared across the Queen's portrait.

"Again, it's thought to be an error caused during the striking process during a 'die clash'."

Like with the Navy coin, it's not known how many of these error coins are in circulation.

But Kate said she has known them to fetch heft sums on the secondary market.

One of these coins sold for £8.99 on May 18, while another went for £13.99 on April 4.

Olympic Aquatics 50p – £155

This rare coin features an image of a swimmer slicing through the water on its reverse.

But the coin we are familiar with today wasn't actually the original design, Kate said.

"A modified version of the design removed waves passing over the swimmer’s face," she added.

"However, a small number of the original design were produced before the design was amended and therefore could still be out there in circulation."

The coin was minted in 2011, along with 28 other designs that each featured a sport played at the 2021 Olympics.

The games were hosted in London that year, so the coin collection came out to celebrate the piece of British sporting history.

Kate said it isn't known how many of the original design Olympic Aquatics 50ps are out there.

But she told The Sun she's seen them listed for close to £1,000 on secondary seller websites.

We didn't find a coin that had sold for quite this much, but we did spot one that had sold for a massive £155 on eBay on April 2.

How do I check if my coin is rare?

Rare coins and valuable notes can be worth tens of thousands of times their face value.

But sometimes it's just tiny differences which make them so lucrative.

The most valuable coins tend to be ones with low mintage numbers or an error.

Those qualities typically make them valuable to collectors.

Your next step would be to check if your coin is still available to purchase in superior Brilliant Uncirculated quality from an official Royal Mint distributor, according to Change Checker.

Certified Brilliant Uncirculated coins have been specially struck to a superior unblemished quality which set them apart from the coins you may find in pockets.

Selling a coin at auction or through a dealer

There are many different factors to consider when trying to value a coin, including its condition and mintage, so it's important to do your homework first.

If you've got a coin that you would like to sell at auction, you can contact The Royal Mint's Collectors Service.

It has a team of experts who can help you to authenticate and value your coin.

You'll need to enquire via email, and a member of the valuation team will contact get back to you.

Take a picture of your coin and attach this to the email – you can find the details on The Royal Mint's website.

Be aware that you will be charged for this service though – the cost will vary depending on the size of your collection.

If you are looking to buy a coin online through a marketplace such as eBay, it's important to know exactly what you are purchasing.

This is because anyone can list a coin on eBay and charge whatever amount they wish.

You should also be wary of fakes online – and keep in mind that on eBay a buyer could pull out, which means the coin won't have sold for the price it says it has.

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Meanwhile, we have put together a guide on the rarest and most valuable coins.

We also tell you what you should do if you find a lucky penny in your pocket.

Do you have a money problem that needs sorting? Get in touch by emailing [email protected]

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