How much do you know about the new £1 coin?

The £1 coin has been around in its current format for around 34 years, however this week a new 12 sided version is being launched in the UK.

Whether you’re a consumer or a business owner, here are the answers to some of the more common questions as well as a few key pointers and dates to be aware of.

Why is the old £1 coin being replaced?

One of the key reasons is to cut the level of counterfeiting – at present it is estimated that one in thirty of the existing ’round pound’ coins is a fake (that’s approximately £45  million worth of forged cash) – it is anticipated that the new style £1 coin will reduce the costs of forgeries to businesses and the taxpayer.

What date will the new coin be introduced into circulation?

The Royal Mint has confirmed that we’ll start to see the revamped pound in circulation from Tuesday 28th March 2017.

Apart from being 12 sided how else does it differ from the existing £1 coin?

The new coin  it is made of two metals. The outer ring is gold coloured (nickel-brass) and the inner ring is silver coloured (nickel-plated alloy).

It also has some very small lettering on the lower inside rim on both sides of the coin. One pound on the obverse “heads” side and the year of production on the reverse “tails” side, for example 2016 or 2017.

More importantly there is a hidden high security feature is built into the coin to protect it from counterfeiting in the future.

How do the dimensions compare with the current £1 coin?

  • Thickness: 2.8mm it is thinner than the round £1 coin.
  • Weight: 8.75g it is lighter than the round £1 coin.
  • Diameter: 23.43mm  it is slightly larger than the round £1 coin, the maximum diameter (point to point) is 23.43mm.

What happens with the old £1 coins – will they still be legal tender?

The current plan is that the existing pound coin and new 12 sided version will both continue to be accepted during a ‘co’circulation’ period which runs until 15th October this year.

From 16th October 2017 shops and businesses no will no longer have to accept the old ’round pound’ as a means of payment although you will still be able to pay them into your bank or the Post Office until further notice.

I run a small business – do I need to take any action?

If you have any vending machines that currently accept pound coins you should contact the manufacturer as soon as possible to establish what modifications are being offered so that your business can accept the new 12 sided coin when it comes into circulation.

Training will need to be undertaken so that your staff understand when the new coin is being introduced and the dates that the existing coin can still be accepted as legal tender.

Where can I find more information?

Anyone wanting to learn more about the coin should visit

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