In 2006 the Royal Mint issued two coins to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the birth of Isambard Kingdom Brunel. One £2 depicted Paddington Station and one, Brunel The Man, had his portrait. As a set they are a nice collector’s item and anyone interested in British history will also appreciate these coins.
History of the coin
The £2 coin was first circulated in 1998. It is the largest coin in circulation and is also bi-metallic.
Prior to 1998 the coin had only been used as a commemorative coin and was not circulated. The commemorative coin was first issued in 1986 and was all one colour.
About Isambard Kingdom Brunel
Isambard Kingdom Brunel was born in 1806 and he changed the way engineering projects were carried out.
He is famous for completing large projects which introduced new methods of engineering and construction. Among his achievements was the Clifton Suspension Bridge. This crosses the River Avon and at 702 feet it was, at the time it was built, the longest bridge in the world.
He was also the first person to build a tunnel under a navigable river, The Thames, and he revolutionised the construction of railways with the building of the Great Western Railway.
His work extended to ship building and the SS Great Britain was the first propeller driven, ocean going, iron ship.
How many Brunel The Man £2 coins were made?
7,928,250 Brunel The Man £2 were issued in 2006.
Design and Designer
- Front design:
The design has a portrait of Brunel standing in front of the Royal Albert Bridge with a wheel next to him. Around the perimeter is a ring of chains.
- Obverse design:
Portrait of Queen Elizabeth II by Ian Rank-Broadley
Designer: Rod Kelly
Rod Kelly is one of the country’s leading silversmiths.
After leaving the Royal College of art in 1983, he has worked mainly on a commission basis and his work is on display in the Victoria and Albert Museum, 10 Downing Street and St Paul’s Cathedral.
His designs include the new Ascot Trophy for the Golden Jubilee Stakes and he designed a silver chased goblet for the Royal Warrant Holders Association for the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton.
His other coin designs include a £5 crown to commemorate the accession to the throne of Queen Elizabeth I.
There were 7,928,250 Brunel The Man £2 coins circulated and they make a set with the Brunel Paddington Station £2.
- Brilliant uncirculated coins are available
- 20,000 Silver Proof coins were produced
- 5,000 Silver Proof Piedfort coins were produced
- 1,500 Gold Proof coins were produced.