Decimal Coins

Decimal coins have existed since 15 February of 1971, when Britain moved away from the old £.s.d coinage to a system of coinage based on decimals. Many other countries had already used decimals in their currency, and Britain had been considering the move since the 1820s. Some even say that Britain’s first attempt at a decimal coin was under Queen Victoria in 1849 when they issued the first Florin, which was exactly 1/10th of a pound or 0.1 pounds (the godless florin).

Browse the subcategories below and find coins for all the denominations of the ‘new’ Decimal system, now over 50 years old.

Britain’s First Decimal Coins

Although decimalisation only came into effect in 1971, Britain’s first decimal coins were actually produced in 1968 in preparation for the changeover from Pre-Decimal to Decimal. They became known as ‘Blue Wallets’ and contained a half pence, one pence, two pence, five pence and the Ten pence. The 5p and 10p are actually dated 1968! So officially, these were also Britain’s first decimal coin set.

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Picture of Elizabeth II, 10 pence 1968 Unc

Elizabeth II, 10 pence 1968 Unc

One of the most interesting coins of the Decimal series is the 10 Pence pieces, especially the old large-sized coins. The first Decimal 10p was introduced in 1968, replacing the two shilling coin in preparation for decimalisation in 1971. It features the portrait of Queen Elizabeth II by Arnold Machin on the obverse. Today you get the small-sized 10 Pence in your change, as this large-sized coin has not been made for over 16 years.
Picture of Elizabeth II, 1971 Royal Mint Proof Set

Elizabeth II, 1971 Royal Mint Proof Set

6 coin set in original Royal Mint packaging.
Elizabeth II, Blue Wallet Decimal Coins with Nice Plastic Case

Elizabeth II, Blue Wallet Decimal Coins with Nice Plastic Case

In 1968 the Royal Mint in preparations for the change over from Pre-decimal coins to Decimal coins issued a wallet of the new coins. It came in a blue plastic wallet and thus they became known as ‘Blue Wallets’. At one time these sets were as common as muck so to speak. Many of the wallets turned sticky because of the type of plastic they used. So there are now two grades of the wallets sticky and non-sticky. Ask someone today when were the first decimal coins and they are old enough to remember the changeover, they will say 1971 and they will be wrong. Because in these Blue Wallets which contain 1/2p, 1p, 2p, 5p and 10p the 5p and 10p are dated 1968! Today the marketing companies are breaking up these sets for the 1968 5p and 10p and you hardly ever see them. We bought 100 sets from a bank that just had them left over. Half were sticky and half were nice. Here we offer them in the non-sticky plastic case. Please remember the quality is about the case only. You get 1968 5p & 10p plus the 1971 ½, 1 and 2 New Pence all in Uncirculated condition.

Buy Decimal coins with Coincraf

We have limited availability for some Decimal Coins on our website, but contrary to many companies ‘selling coins’ online, we actually own the stock presented in the product pages, and in seldom occasions will you see an item published on our website that is not available immediately for purchase. With us you won’t receive the usual ‘sourced to order’ message. What also differentiates us from other coin dealers online coin is that we do not sell anything as an investment.

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