The Scouting 50p was released into circulation back in 2007, three years earlier than the 2010 Girlguiding 50p. Also known as the 'Be Prepared 50p' due to the inscription on the reverse of the coin, over 7 million of the fifty pence coins were issued to commemorate the centenary of the Boy Scout Movement, but how much is it worth today?
In today's market, based on online sales with retailers and auction sites such as eBay and Amazon, we would give it a current market value of around £2.50 for a circulated version of this coin. Bear in mind you will still need to pay postage and packaging if you were looking to buy or sell this coin, in addition to the fact it has been in circulation for 15 years, so condition of the coin is to be considered.
In this post, we'll look at the history of the Scouting Movement fifty pence coin, its design, whether it's a rare coin and where you can purchase it if required.
Just a point to note, this coin was issued by the Royal Mint in 2007 and then re-issued in 2019 as part of the 50 years of the 50p British Culture and Military set.
So if you search online, just make sure which version you are looking at as the 2007 and 2019 coins look the same on the reverse side, only the obverse is different. The 2007 edition was released into general circulation but the 2019 version was not.
History of the Coin
The scouting movement was founded in Britain in 1907 by Robert Baden-Powell, a cavalry officer. He hoped to instill in boys aged 11–14 a sense of resourcefulness and a code of chivalrous behaviour. To become a scout, a boy would promise to be loyal to his country, help others, and obey the Scout Law. Originally a British movement, Baden-Powell’s idea took off all over the world. Today there are scouting organisations in more than 170 different countries adhering to the famous motto, ‘be prepared’.
The coin is based on the Scouting Movement of 1907, which was established by Robert Baden-Powell, a Lieutenant in the British Army. He wrote about his experiences, such as reconnaissance and scouting, in a book called 'Scouting for Boys', which was meant for young men.
A camp on Brownsea Island was used to test the instructions in his book. That date and the publishing date of the book are considered to be the prime years of the Scouting Movement in 1907.
A couple of years later, the book's success saw over 11,000 scouts at the first Scout Rally in the Crystal Palace in London. At the time, the scout census was more than 100,000 members.
The idea for a scouting program for girls manifested during that rally when a group of girls turned up asking whether they could be scouts - this resulted in the formation of the girlguiding movement which coincidentally, was also commemorated on a 50p coin, the Girlguiding 50p coin.
The aim of the scouts was to encourage boys to become responsible members of their communities. The three-fold emblem represents three promises they have to make to become genuine scouts:
- To do their duty to God and the King.
- To do their best to help others no matter what.
- To know and abide by the scout law.
With time, the movement took over the globe; today, over 200 countries are registered with the Scouting Movement, with the highest numbers being in Indonesia.
The 100th anniversary of that year was commemorated with the Scouting Movement 50p coin.
The Design of the Coin
Kerry Jones designed the reverse of the Scouting Movement 50p and it features the famous fleur-de-lis (a stylized lily flower) in the centre, superimposed over a globe.
The scouts' motto ‘BE PREPARED’ (being in a state of readiness to do your duty) is inscribed towards the bottom.
To the sides, the dates '1907' and '2007' are shown to mark the year of the inception of the scouting movement and the year of it's centenary, the 100th year anniversary.
The coin denomination of 'FIFTY PENCE' is inscribed at the top of the coin..
The obverse design of the Scouting 50 pence is the Fourth portrait of Her Majesty the Queen designed by Ian Rank Broadley that was used on all coins between 1998 and 2015.
His initials IRB are featured below the Queen's neckline.
Her Majesty the Queen can be seen wearing a tiara called The Girls of Great Britain and Ireland.
Mintage of the Coin
A total of 7,710,750 Scouting Movement 50p coins were minted by the Royal Mint and circulated in 2007. It was released along with the Britannia 50p coin, which had a mintage of 11.2 million that year.
Is the Scouting 50p Coin Rare?
According to the Royal Mint website, 7,710,750 Scouting 50p coins entered circulation back in 2007. A mintage of this amount tends to be a coin that you could easily find in your change, it is not considered as rare. As this coin has been circulating for over 15 years it may have considerable marks of wear and tear.
Having said that, coin collecting has really taken off over recent years with the media frenzy over coins such as the 2009 Kew Gardens 50p and the 2016 Jemima Puddle-duck 50p so although over 7 million of these were released, many have been taken out of circulation by collectors and scout enthusiasts themselves.
Ironically, a mintage of 7 million is on a par with the 2010 Girlguiding 50p which had a slightly lower mintage at 7.4 million. The 2013 Christopher Ironside 50p had a mintage of 7 million.
Most coin experts would consider it to be an ordinary coin but it has an outstanding design.
The Royal Mint also produced other versions of the coin with 12,500 Silver Proof coins, 1,555 Silver Proof Piedfort coins and 1,250 Gold Proof coins were produced, along with 100,000 brilliant uncirculated packs containing the coin.
How Much Is the Scouting 50p Coin Worth Today?
As always it is difficult to put an exact price on a coin as all coins vary in condition. To a collector we would estimate the Scouting 50p coin to be worth around £2.50 in good condition, but if you are looking to buy one, expect to pay more than this to cover seller's costs for postage and packaging. It is still more than three times the face value of the coin so worth holding on to.
Where Can I Buy the Scouting 50p Coin?
You can buy the Scouting 50p coin online on auction sites such as eBay or Amazon but please ensure you look at all the information and reputation of the seller. As we said we expect this coin to be selling for £2.50 plus postage so be wary of any listings trying to sell this circulated coin for more than £5.
We have this coin in stock so you can buy it now.
Unfortunately, as this coin is now over 12 years old, the Royal Mint no longer stock this coin so it is only available to buy on the secondary market.
Are there any known errors of this coin?
The Royal Mint has not confirmed any official errors for this coin.
Bit of Trivia...
The Scouting 50p, along with the 2010 Girlguiding 50p, was re-released in 2019 as part of the 50th Anniversary of the 50p Celebrations. This coin was released as a Brilliant Uncirculated commemorative issue only and did not enter general circulation.