Rarest 50p in Britain sells for £109 - do you have one stashed away?

Published by James Poulter on 22 January 2019.
Last updated on 22 January 2019

The Kew Gardens 50p coin, one of the rarest in circulation, sold for £109 on auction site eBay yesterday.

There were eighteen bids for the Kew Gardens 50p coin. It was originally listed for £1, only double its face value.

The rare coins can sell for up to 160 times their face value on the auction site, thanks to their popularity with collectors.

Only 210,000 of the Kew Gardens 50p coins were released by the Royal Mint, making it the rarest 50p coin in circulation.

The coin was minted in 2009 to celebrate the 250th anniversary of the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew and features a design of the Chinese Pagoda (pictured above), built in 1762.

For each 50p design there are on average five million coins minted, making the Kew Gardens 50p incredibly hard to find.

Only one in 300 people will ever come across them according to coin collecting website Change Checker which maintains an index monitoring coin scarcity.

The coin is officially the rarest in circulation, according to the Change Checker January 2019 50p Scarcity Index, which gives the Kew Gardens 50p a scarcity score of 100.

The next rarest is the football coin issued for the 2012 Olympics which has a score of 98.

The rest of the top 20 rarest 50ps are dominated by the Olympic coins, which fill places 2-18 on the index.

The Royal Mint estimates 75% of the Olympic coins have been removed from circulation by collectors.

The Kew Gardens 50p has been reissued as part of a set of 50p coins to commemorate 50 years of the coins circulation but this won't affect the scarcity of the 2009 coin says Change Checker.

The set sold out in just one hour and is now selling on eBay for up to £499

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