In this article we'll look at the Victoria Cross Heroic Acts 50p which is the fifty pence that has the Victoria Cross wounded soldier depicted on the reverse. But how much is it worth?
In today's market, based on online sales with retailers and auction sites such as eBay or Amazon, we would give it a current market value of around £2.80 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 16 years, so condition of the coin is to be considered.
HRH The Prince of Wales and HRH The Duchess of Cornwall. attended a special Service of Commemoration to mark this important event at Westminster Abbey on Monday 26th June 2006.
What is the Victoria Cross?
The Victoria Cross was first proposed in 1854 by the Duke of Wellington during the Crimean War and, following a debate in the House of Commons, it was agreed that Queen Victoria should create ‘an order of merit for distinguished and prominent personal gallantry to which every grade and individual from the highest to the lowest may be admissible.’
Two years later, on 29th January 1856, Queen Victoria signed the authorisation to create the medal at Buckingham Palace. The Victoria Cross was instituted by Queen Victoria (hence the name) and made retrospective to 1854 to include actions in the Crimean War.
The Victoria Cross is Britain's joint-highest award for gallantry and is awarded for 'most conspicuous bravery or some daring pre-eminent act of valour or self-sacrifice or extreme devotion to duty in the presence of the enemy'.
It was only equalled in status in 1940, when the George Cross (GC) was instituted for acts of conspicuous bravery not in the enemy's presence.
There is no barrier of colour, creed, sex or rank. Indeed, VC recipients have come from all social backgrounds and from all over the British Empire and Commonwealth.
Since its inception in 1856, there have been a total of 1,358 VCs awarded. This total includes three bars granted to soldiers who won a second VC and the cross awarded to the Unknown American soldier.
During the First World War (1914-18), 626 VCs were awarded and in the Second World War (1939-45) 181. Every single person who has received this award demonstrated exceptional bravery by putting their own lives on the line for the country.
The jewellers Hancock’s of London has been commissioned to produce every VC awarded since its creation.
The Design of the 2006 Victoria Cross Heroic Acts 50p Coin
The reverse side of the coin features a design by Clive Dunn, who is a sculptor and also a lecturer at London Guildhall University.
The front of the Victoria Cross Heroic Acts 50p design has a soldier carrying a wounded comrade in the middle of the coin.
This is why it is sometimes called the Wounded Soldier 50p. There is the large outline of a Victoria Cross medal in the background.
The words 'FIFTY PENCE' are displayed at the bottom of the coin and the designer's initials CD are inscribed next to the soldier's feet.
The obverse side of the coin features a portrait of the Queen by Ian Rank-Broadley. His initials IRB are featured below the Queen's neckline.
This portrait was used on all UK coinage from 1998 to 2014 and for some 2015 coins.
It was the fourth portrait of the Queen used on British coinage, succeeding the work of Raphael Maklouf on those before it.
Her Majesty the Queen can be seen wearing a tiara called The Girls of Great Britain and Ireland.
Mintage of the Coin
According to the Royal Mint's official website, the 2006 Victoria Cross Heroic Acts 50p had a mintage of 10,000,500, which is considered a high mintage in comparison with other 50p coins. A coin with a similar mintage was the Brexit 50p and the Diversity 50p coins which were released in 2020.
Is the Victoria Cross Heroic Acts 50p Coin Rare?
A mintage of over 10 million does not make this coin particularly rare and it is quite possible you can still find this coin in your change despite it being 16 years old. In comparison, the Kew Gardens 50p had a mintage of 210,000 and the 2018 Peter Rabbit 50p and mintage of 1.4 million.
As a comparison, the other commemorative coin issued that year the 2006 Victoria Cross Heroic Acts, or wounded soldier as it is commonly known, had a mintage of 10,000,500.
As the number of coin collectors grows, more and more of these coins have been taken out of circulation to add to collections, thus increasing the scarcity.
Most coin experts would consider it to be an ordinary coin but it has a historical design.
The Royal Mint also minted Gold Proof (1,000 mintage), Silver Proof (7,500 mintage), Silver Proof Piedfort (5,000 mintage), and Brilliant Uncirculated versions of this coin.
How Much Is the Victoria Cross Heroic Acts 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 VC Heroic Acts 50p coin in good circulated to be worth around £2.80, 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 four times the face value of the coin so a good find if you receive one in your change.
Where Can I Buy the VC Heroic Acts 50p Coin?
You can buy this coin on our site by clicking here.
Alternatively, you can buy the VC Heroic Acts 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 £2.80 plus postage so be wary of any listings trying to sell this circulated coin for more than £6.
Unfortunately, as this coin is now over 16 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 original version of this design for the 150th Anniversary of the VC Heroic Acts 50p was reportedly personally vetoed by, then Chancellor of the Exchequer, Gordon Brown as he considered it to be too graphic. The original design appeared to show a soldier being shot in the back.
The VC Heroic Acts 50p, along with the VC Award 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.