Queen Elizabeth II - 1926-2022

It has been a sad month for us here at the Royal Mint Museum as we reflect on the death of Her Late Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. The coinage and medals of her reign form a large part of our collection, from the earliest plaster models by Mary Gillick to the more recent commemorative coins celebrating her Platinum Jubilee. Annual Reports in our online library show the long-standing relationship between Her Majesty and the Royal Mint, including how significant changes during her long reign have been captured on the coinage.

Plaster model featuring Mary Gillick's portrait of Queen Elizabeth II

As demonstrated by the number of occasions she visited the Mint throughout her life, the Queen had a genuine and involved connection with her coins, the Mint, and those who worked here. The first of those visits took place in 1937 when a young Princess Elizabeth came to the Tower Hill site in London with her mother and sister. She visited again in 1966, but perhaps the most significant event was in December 1968 when she opened the ‘Decimal branch’ at Llantrisant, now the permanent home for the Royal Mint in the Welsh Valleys.

Visit of the Queen to the Decimal Branch at Llantrisant 1968

Everyone at the Royal Mint Museum would like to extend our heartfelt sympathy to the Royal Family at this extraordinarily sad time. As Anne Jessopp, Chief Executive Officer at The Royal Mint, said: “Queen Elizabeth II ruled with heart and devotion, and will be dearly missed by all of us at The Royal Mint and by millions of people around the world.”

Queen Elizabeth II will always hold a special and prominent place in the Royal Mint Museum collection, and we will be sharing numismatic highlights from her long reign over the coming months.


British Numismatic Society Bursary Placement

One ray of sunshine this month has been brought to us by Kerry Love, a PhD student from the University of Northampton. Kerry undertook an internship with us here in the Museum, spending two weeks researching and cataloguing our collection of eighteenth-century trade tokens, some 300 items, thanks to funding from the British Numismatic Society’s student bursary scheme. The records Kerry has produced will be published in an online catalogue as part of a larger selection of our collection online. This online catalogue is currently being developed to make our collection accessible to researchers. Keep your eyes open for a blog from Kerry in our Guest Articles section very soon.

Kerry Love during her placement at the Royal Mint Museum

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