Fifty Pence Coin Issued

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Fifty Pence Coin Issued

The 14th of October 1969 AD

Decimal coins had already begun to be introduced in Britain on April 23 1968 the 5p and 10p coins had entered circulation but it was the 50p coin replacing the old 10s note that really made it feel like decimalisation was happening. After all, a 10s note was real money, a pleasant surprise in a birthday card from an aunt; whereas 5p was just a shilling really, and 10p double that.
As well as preparing the way for the full decimalisation to come on February 15 1971 , the move was also made to save money: a 10 bob note lasted about five months; a 50p (New Pence on the design) coin was expected to have a life of 50 years. An amazing 188 million were produced in the first year of their use, a figure not rivalled until the smaller version was introduced in 1997.
The then unique design of the 50p, the only hexagonal coin in the world at that time, occasioned a few grumbles: some people complained that it was too close in size to the 10p coin and they confused them (but the shape should have been a bit of a giveaway); and others simply loathed the hexagonal form for itself the BBC cite a Colonel Essex Moorcroft (too good a name to be true, but it apparently is) as founding an organisation opposed to it.

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On this day:
Battle of Margate - 1387, Elizabeth I dies - 1603, The Real Great Escape - 1944, Dark Side of the Moon Released - 1973
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