|The one-pound counterfeit coin files||Robert Matthews Coin Authentication|
The United Kingdom one-pound coin has been counterfeited almost since it was introduced in 1983. This group of files attempts to give information on the genuine coin and details of some of the various counterfeit coins and counterfeit cases involving the pound coin. No claim is made that the files include all types of counterfeit one-pound coins. Much of the material has been obtained from published sources; wherever possible the sources of the material have been acknowledged.
The pages of this group of files contain a number of images. For those without a fast broadband connection these may require patience while they download.
There is much more material to be added to these files. Future material will include: explaining the edge lettering measurements used and the type NP counterfeits. For the latest news on UK counterfeiting see the Counterfeit Coin Newsletter, an index of recent articles on UK counterfeiting is at CCN Index
The one-pound coin
The one-pound coin is a relatively small, chunky coin made from nickel brass. The legal and Royal Mint factory specifications of the coin are noted below. The nickel brass is a 5.5% nickel alloy. This alloy is a pale yellow colour and is distinctive from the straw yellow of most binary brass alloys.
The one-pound counterfeit coin files
3.4.1 Examples of binary brass alloy counterfeits:
3.4.3 Other brass alloy counterfeits:
UK One-pound Coin Specification
[*indicates a Royal Mint factory tolerance rather than a legal tolerance]
The coin designs
The one-pound coin obverse design is the traditional profile of the monarch, Queen Elizabeth II. Four portraits of Queen Elizabeth II have been used since the coronation in 1953. Three of these have occurred on the one-pound coin. The reverse design of the coin changes every year in a five-year cycle of designs representing the United Kingdom, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and England. In the first two cycles the same plant designs were used except for the United Kingdom's design. In the next two cycles designs based on heraldic representation of the individual countries were used. Currently a cycle of famous bridges is being used.
To see a larger reproduction of the images below, click on the image and use your browser back arrow to return to this page.
The reverse design showing, "The Ensigns Amorial of the UK".
The obverse designs used on the one-pound coin.
The 2004 reverse design showing the Forth Bridge.
The 2005 reverse design showing the Menai Straights Bridge.
The edge on the "Bridges" reverse design coins.
The one-pound coin die axis is ↑↑. The edge lettering is randomly aligned. During manufacture the edge lettering is impressed on to the coin blank prior to striking in the coin press. The feed mechanism in the press presents the edge-lettered blanks to the coin dies randomly. During striking the collar imparts the fine millings on the edge of the coin. This means that on genuine coins there should be no evidence of these millings at the base of the impressions made by the lettering.