Florence Nightingale is one of Britain’s most well-known historic figures. She died in 1910 and to commemorate her life and work a special Florence Nightingale £2 was issued for the 100th anniversary of her death.
This is a popular coin for anyone with an interest in British or medical history.
History of the coin
The £2 is the latest addition to the British coin set.
The earlier versions of the coin were only released as commemorative issues and were not released in to circulation. The first was in 1986 to honour Scotland hosting the Commonwealth Games.
The coin was officially circulated in 1998 but with one slight change. The commemorative coin was all one colour, while the new circulating coin is bi-metallic.
About Florence Nightingale
Florence Nightingale became famous for her work tending to the sick and injured during the Crimean War and her work has helped to shape nursing as it is today.
Florence volunteered to help other medical staff during the Crimean War and her dedication and commitment earned her the nickname ‘The Lady with the Lamp.’
When she returned from the Crimea, she helped to form the foundations for modern nursing. Her book ‘Notes on Nursing: What it is and What it is not was published in 1859. This contained her notes and findings about nursing and became the reference book for anyone wishing to train as a nurse. She then opened St Thomas’ Hospital, London in 1860. This was the first nursing school and formed the basis for modern nurse training.
How many Florence Nightingale £2 coins were made?
In 2010, 6,175,000 Florence Nightingale £2 were released in to circulation.
Design and Designer
- Front design:
The design shows the hands of a nurse taking a patient’s pulse. ‘1820 – Florence Nightingale – 1910’ appears around the sides.
- Obverse design:
Portrait of Queen Elizabeth II by Ian Rank-Broadley
Designer: Gordon Summers
Gordon Summers originally trained to be a jeweller.
Shortly after he graduated, he won a competition for the Royal Society of Arts to design a medal. In 1993 he was offered an apprenticeship with the Royal Mint as an engraver and has been chief engraver for them since 2008. His work includes overseeing all coin and medal designs for the Royal Mint, which are not just produced for the UK but for other countries as well.
Since becoming chief engraver, he doesn’t get to spend much time designing himself, but he was involved in the work for the Olympics and Paralympics in London in 2012.
The circulation of the Florence Nightingale £2 in 2010 was 6,175,000.
- Brilliant uncirculated coins are available
- 5,000 Silver Proof coins were produced
- 3,500 Silver Proof Piedfort coins were produced
- 500 Gold Proof coins were produced.