The Scouting movement began in 1907 and to commemorate its 100th anniversary, the Royal Mint released a celebratory 50p piece. This limited edition coin is a great collectable item for any Scout or Girl Guide, as well as former members. For coin collectors, it was the only commemorative coin issued in 2007.
History of the coin
The first 50p coin was minted in 1969, prior to the country introducing the decimal system of currency. New coinage had to be produced and circulated ready for the new system in 1971. The 50p replaced the 10 shilling note and had an original 7 sided design.
Since it was first minted it has only had one modification, when it was made a little smaller in 1997, following the reduction on size of 5p and 10p coins.
The Be Prepared 50p is one of two which commemorate the Scouting movement, with a Girl Guide commemorative coin being circulated in 2010.
About the motto Be Prepared
Started in 1907 by Robert Baden-Powell, the Scouting movement was originally an organisation for boys to help them learn some of the many skills they would need as they grew up. The first meeting was at Brownsea Island when Baden-Powell held a camp to test the ideas which he had put in his book, Scouting for Boys. This meeting was such a success that the organisation immediately started to grow.
There are 3 age ranges for scouts: Cub Scout, Boy Scout and Rover Scout. In 1910 a similar organisation was started for girls.
The Scouting movement spread quickly throughout the World and there are now over 50 million scouts in 216 different countries and territories.
How many Be Prepared 50p coins were made?
In 2007, 7,710,750 Be Prepared 50p coins were put in to circulation.
Design and Designer
- Front design:
The front of the Be Prepared 50p shows a fleur-de-lis. The words Be Prepared are along the bottom edge, with the dates 1907 and 2007 on either side.
- Obverse design:
The 4th portrait of Queen Elizabeth II by Ian Rank-Broadley.
- Designer: Kerry Jones
Her design uses the Fleur-De-Lis emblem associated with the Scouting movement. Unlike some other designers, she has not put both initials on the coin, and has just added ‘K’ on the left hand side of the design.
The original circulation of the Be Prepared 50 in 2007 was 7,710,750. It was re-minted in 2019 as part of the celebration of 50 years of the 50p, but these were only issued as part of collector’s sets.
- Brilliant uncirculated coins are available
- Gold Proof coins were produced and in 2019 a further 75 Gold Proof sets were issued
- 1,969 Silver Proof coins were produced, and in 2019 a further 1,969 Silver Proof sets were issued.
- Silver Proof Piedfort coins were produced.