King Charles' 'more human' coin revealed as monarch ditches crown on new 50p

King Charles III's image will appear on Royal Mint in honor of his succession, with a new 5p and £5 coin expected to enter circulation in the coming weeks

King Charles' 'more human' coin revealed as monarch ditches crown on new 50p
(Image credit: Getty)

King Charles III's face has been engraved on Royal Mint following His Majesty's ascension to the throne, with a 50p coin carrying his portrait expected to enter circulation in the coming weeks. 

King Charles III's image has been engraved on a new 50p coin, in keeping with the longstanding British tradition that the reigning monarch's face should appear on Royal Mint. 

The historic coin, which has been personally approved by His Majesty, will begin to be circulated alongside coins showing Queen Elizabeth II in the coming months. The King's face will also appear on a commemorative £5 coin, the reverse of which features two new portraits of his late mother. 

The King's effigy for the new coins was designed by British sculptor Martin Jennings, who used a photograph rather than a live sitting to create the image. It's understood that the 73-year-old monarch was pleased with the final illustration, which he was shown shortly after Queen Elizabeth II's death. 


King Charles III's new coin 

(Image credit: Getty)

The coins have also received praise from the Royal Mint Museum, with its resident historian Chris Barker complimenting Jenning's achievement of "a very good likeness” of King Charles III. 

"It’s very warm with a good sense of humanity – probably more human and less idealized than some of the portraits we’ve seen before," he told the Telegraph. “It’s both accessible and dignified, reflecting his years of service." 

King Charles III is shown facing to the left on the new coins, following the tradition that the new monarch looks in the opposite direction to their predecessor. Unlike the Queen's coins, he appears without his Crown. 

King's coins

(Image credit: Getty)

In the meantime, the British public has been assured that their Queen Elizabeth II coins are still usable. 

"People should not worry if they have coins with the Queen on. We will keep those coins in circulation," Anne Jessopp, chief executive of the Royal Mint, told the BBC. "We are seeing people moving to different forms of payment, but people really like to use coins as well for lots of different reasons."

When will King Charles III's banknotes enter circulation?

King Charles III's banknotes will be unveiled by the end of the year with an expected circulation date of mid-2024, the Bank of England said in a statement on Tuesday. 

"His Majesty’s portrait will appear on existing designs of all four polymer banknotes,” the statement said. “This will be a continuation of the current polymer series and no additional changes to the banknote designs will be made." 

Current banknotes containing Queen Elizabeth II's image remain valid as legal tender and will continue to be circulated alongside King Charles III's notes until they become worn or damaged. 

Emma Dooney
Lifestyle News Writer

Hailing from the lovely city of Dublin, Emma mainly covers the Royal Family and the entertainment world, as well as the occasional health and wellness feature. Always up for a good conversation, she has a passion for interviewing everyone from A-list celebrities to the local GP - or just about anyone who will chat to her, really.

Emma holds an MA in International Journalism from City, University of London, and a BA in English Literature from Trinity College Dublin.