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Charities urged to prepare for the new pound coin

Charities urged to prepare for the new pound coin

The familiar £1 coin will not be round for much longer. A new 12-sided coin will be introduced in 2017 and charities and businesses are being urged to make preparations for handling it.

As reported by UK Fundraising in March 2014, the 30-year-old pound coin is next year being removed from circulation and replaced by a new 12-sided version. A public competition was held to choose the design, and UK Fundraising’s Howard Lake entered a philanthropy-themed design.

The government and have created a website,, that provides charities with materials to support them in their preparation for the new coin.


Sound as a pound

The new pound coin will be “the most secure of its kind in the world”, designed to combat counterfeiters. There are around 45 million counterfeit £1 coins currently in circulation: in 2008 UK Fundraising reported that there were around 30 million. New security features include a hologram-like image that changes from a ‘£’ symbol to the number ‘1’ when the coin is seen from different angles. It also has micro-lettering and milled edges.

One pound coin - obverse

2017 design of one pound coin - reverse

What should charities do?

Charities that handle cash should, according to the Government, take the following steps before March 2017:

•           Check whether they operate equipment that handles the £1 coin;

•           Contact their equipment supplier to find out if they need to make any adaptations or upgrades;

•           Make the necessary changes to their coin handling equipment;

•           Train their staff on the features of the new £1 coin; and

•           Make arrangements with their bank or cash in transit provider to return the current £1 coin and new £1 coin in separate packaging.

David Gauke, the Chief Secretary to the Treasury, said:

“The pound as we know it will not be round for much longer. The introduction of this new £1 coin will be a highly significant event and we are working with The Royal Mint to ensure key industries are ready and to ensure a smooth transition.”

More information is available from



Main image: Edge view of the proposed new one pound coin due to be introduced in 2017. Image: The Royal Mint


Howard Lake is a digital fundraising entrepreneur. Publisher of UK Fundraising, the world's first web resource for professional fundraisers, since 1994. Trainer and consultant in digital fundraising. Founder of Fundraising Camp.

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