At 4.24pm on 22 July the Duchess of Cambridge gave birth to our future King. At the same time she inadvertently kicked off a £56 million collecting frenzy according to the UK’s Centre for Retail Research.
So how do you identify the wood for the treasures – or perhaps more importantly the treasures from the trinkets.
Firstly, it will be of no surprise to find me nailing my colours firmly to the numismatic mast. Mugs, plates, tea towels, posters all have their place but many are mass produced in China and have little craftsmanship behind them.
In contrast when you own a commemorative coin, or even medal, it has a depth to it, which I believe ensures that it will continue as a treasured heirloom in years to come.
So here’s my 5 point guide as to why I recommend commemorative coins and medals as the perfect way to celebrate the Royal Baby both now and for years to come.
1. The History and Heritage of Numismatics
Coins have a history and heritage that dates back hundreds of years. They are the work of craftsmen, who are often still loyal to traditions of coin production that have changed little since the 17th century.
More importantly they have, for years, created some of the most significant and valuable commemoratives for key royal events.
2. Seek Out Low Edition Limits that Sell Out
Unlike many pieces of memorabilia commemorative coins have credible edition limits, which are backed by a strong history of sell-outs for similar pieces.
3. Mark a Moment in Time
Dated product is all-important when commemorating an event. A coin or commemorative medal’s date will forever identify its place in history.
4. Precious Metal is King
When celebrating a future King (or indeed any major event) precious metal is King. It’s simple really. Not only do silver and gold ensure the quality of your piece but you will forever own something with real value, underpinned by its own intrinsic metal value.
5. Quality of Design
There will be many rushed designs, featuring imagined images of mother and baby. Avoid these whenever possible and opt for the designs that have sustained coinage over its history – designs vested in the heritage and heraldry of the UK and Royal Family.
Mark my words, in years to come they will still look beautiful, whilst poorly sculpted baby designs will looked tired and clichéd.
So what do I recommend?
It is still early days and I am still awaiting information from a number of key issuing authorities. However, keep the above points in mind and, when adding coins to your portfolio remember that British Isles coins and those with strong Commonwealth links like Canada and Australia, usually provide the highest quality.
However, in the meantime, I have identified an initial selection of releases that I consider would be valuable additions to any Portfolio.