Tag Archives: Royal Mint

Currency, Collectables and a Coin Too Far…

First trip of the day was running Julia up to Worksop for a First Aid course.

It was a lovely morning, with sunlight streaming through trees in Sherwood Forest and illuminating the mist with rays of golden light. By the time I could find a parking space to take photographs the trees were too thick to admit light. By the time we found a better spot the mist had gone.

Just one more missed opportunity…

I misjudged the timing and was ten minutes late for work. I hate being late, though I’d warned them in advance as a precaution.

It was currency today.

I now know the difference between Latvian Lats and Lithuanian Litas. As they have both been superseded by the Euro, this knowledge is of limited use.

I also sorted the shekels and thought of alliterative ways of making sense of the rest of the accumulated foreign currency. I divvied up the Dirhams, divided the Dinar, ranked the Rand, realigned the rupees (Mauritian) and zoned the Zlotys. The Peruvian Sols were a step too far.

Having exhausted the entertainment possibilities of foreign currency I spent a while sorting Royal Mint coin sets by denomination and the size of the presentation pack.

It was a close run thing whether my will to live, or my supply of soul-destroying jobs would last longer.

Just one more coin could have tipped the balance.

The will to live and the supply of jobs were running neck and neck when the working day ended, and it was time to pick Julia up for an evening of Shepherd’s Pie and complaining about our days.

There was a hint of humour in the day when two customers managed to get lost entering the shop. They came through the first door then, instead of coming through the door with the bright, expensive sign, they turned into the Indian Takeaway.

You have to wonder how they managed to find us in the first place.


Do you think this sign is big enough?


So Much Stuff, So Little Time

The Royal Mint has just released a series of 10 pence coins featuring the 26 letters of the alphabet, each one representing a feature of Britishness.

Like so many modern coins, they could well have been designed in an afternoon by a group of kids. They don’t show a great flair for design, and some of them show a somewhat hazy grasp of Britishness. Given half an hour I’m sure I could come up with a better set.

We haven’t had any phone calls about them yet, but they aren’t released until next Monday so there is still time. It seems that they will be making 100,000 of each design, which is quite low in mintage terms. However, if you read another article, they are doing a million of each and will make more in years to come.  Another paper is already reporting on rarity and values. Looks like the misinformation has already started…

When not applying my waning brain power to balancing on ice and learning about 10 pence coins I’ve been looking up details of snow clearance and winter preparations in other countries.

I now know the snowiest city in the world, and it’s not where I thought it would be. I was thinking Canada/Russia/USA. It’s actually Aomori City in Japan with 312 inches a year. That’s taller than four tall men. Even the 10th city on the list – Buffalo, NY, has 95 inches of snow a year. Some years in Nottingham we don’t have much more than a couple of hard frosts. Even this year I doubt we’ve had more than 6 inches in total, and this has been a Very Snowy Year.

I also know there’s a shortage of snowplough drivers in Maine, that they have special facilities to store winter tyres in Sweden and that last November Chicago deployed 210 snowploughs to clear a light fall of snow. There are only 450 snowploughs in the whole of the UK.

And finally, I know that although we always complain about winter disruption, we would complain even louder if we had to pay for winter tyres and extra snowploughs.