Royal Mint unveils 'world’s most visually secure' bullion coin


28 September 2020
The Royal Mint, the original maker of UK coins, has unveiled the world’s 'most visually secure' bullion coin. The Britannia range contains four innovative security features, which enable customers to verify that the product is authentic by rotating it in the light.

The Royal Mint is the primary producer of bullion coins in Britain, as well as offering a range of other physical and digital precious metal products, safe storage and wealth management solutions.
Britannia has been The Royal Mint’s flagship bullion coin since it was first introduced in 1987. The new edition, which goes on sale from 19 October, introduces layers of new security features which combine to make it the most visually secure coin in the world.

The features include:

  • Latent image: First introduced on the £2 coin, the latent image acts like a hologram and changes from a padlock to a trident when the coin is seen from different angles.
  • Surface Animation: Micro details on the coin combine to create the illusion of waves rolling behind the figure of Britannia. These are created using advanced picosecond lasers, and come to life as the coin is rotated.
  • Micro-text: The addition of the inscription “DECUS ET TUTAMEN” which translates to “an ornament and a safeguard” surrounds the figure of Britannia, and is created using specialist lasers.
  • Tincture lines: To reinforce security, The Royal Mint has reintroduced the traditional art of Tincture lines – depicting colours and patterns on metal.

The Royal Mint was one of the first mints in the world to use advanced picosecond lasers – used in medicine and aerospace - for the production of coins. This technology enables The Royal Mint to work on a submicron level, creating complex designs using indents which are 200 times narrower than the width of a human hair.

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Together these tiny indents can create spectacular special effects - such as the movement of waves seen in the background of the Britannia coin. The advanced technology and intricacy of the design makes it incredibly difficult to replicate, and gives the owner confidence that they have a genuine gold product simply by rotating it in the light.

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Gordon Summers, Chief Engraver at The Royal Mint, said: “Britannia is one of our most iconic and enduring designs, so it was vital we retained the beauty of the coin whilst adding sophisticated new anti-counterfeit measures. By focusing on the natural reflection of the metal, and using advanced new technology, we have created a unique and highly safe coin which gives customers complete confidence.”
Demand for gold has significantly increased over the last six months as investors look for ways to diversify their portfolio through ‘safe haven’ assets such as Precious Metals. The Royal Mint has seen website sales of gold Britannia coins increase by 236% from 1st April - September 2020, when compared with the same period last year. UK net gold bar and coin demand in Q1 (April-June) increased 86% when compared to the same period last year according to data from the World Gold Council.

Britannia bullion coins are renowned for their reliability, with their weight and quality verified at the centuries-old annual Trial of the Pyx in Goldsmith’s Hall.

Britannia 2021 product range:



Britannia 2021 UK One Ounce Gold Bullion Coin


Britannia 2021 UK Half- Ounce Gold Bullion Coin


Britannia 2021 UK Quarter-Ounce Gold Bullion Coin


Britannia 2021 UK Tenth-Ounce Gold Bullion Coin


Britannia 2021 UK One Ounce Silver Bullion Coin








Issuing authority



999.9 Au

999.9 Au

999.9 Au

999.9 Au

999.9 Ag













Obverse designer

Jody Clark

Reverse designer

Philip Nathan



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