A Sneak Peak at Upcoming Coin Issues from the Royal Australian Mint 2015-16

The latest currency determination for the Royal Australian Mint gives us a sneak peak at upcoming issues as if we were looking into a crystal ball. The fourth government document issued by Treasury in 2015 explains proposed designs the Mint plans to make into both circulating coins and collector currency. Let’s take that peak into the upcoming issues.

1. 20 cent commemorating the 200th anniversary of the birth of Sir Henry Parkes. Known as the Father of Federation, we celebrated the centenary of his death with a commemorative dollar in 1986. Now, in 2015 we commemorate the bicentenary of his birth with this coin design by Yannie Rumbaoa. Including his initials ‘YR’ the coin reverse depicts Sir Henry Parkes and a stylised representation of the Southern Cross.

2. 50 cent Empire Air Training Scheme appears to fit within the Australians at War series in the ANZAC Centenary coin program being the next coin in the 18 coin set issued over three years. This program (EATS) trained 45,000 additional Australian aircrew throughout World War II from 1940-1945. The design features a red ’50’ on a blue background with three airmen and an aeroplane. Concentric circles are superimposed on a stylised representation of a part of the map of the world.

3. Another coloured commemorative 2 dollar coin with an ANZAC theme. This time red circular stripes, 5 crosses and poppy flowers in between. In the middle, ‘LEST WE FORGET’. Perhaps we’ll see this new coloured $2 for ANZAC day 2015?

4. Unlikely Heroes Great and Small, the continuing new coloured one dollar series. A further two coins to be issued in this series, the first Horrie the dog and the second Shake the kangaroo. Horrie was the unofficial mascot of the 2/1st Machine Gun Battalion in Egypt in 1941 and was smuggled back into Australia in 1942. The terrier was adopted by Australian soldier Private Jim Moody and Horrie is depicted on the coin reverse along with 3 tents in a desert scene. Shake was a kangaroo mascot of an Australian regiment and lived in Egypt around 1915. Many Australian units took kangaroos and other Australian animals to Egypt during the war and some were given to the local Zoo when the units were sent to Gallipoli. Shake is depicted on the coin reverse in front of coloured pyramids in a desert scene.

Shake the kangaroo in Egypt (image thanks to the Australian War Memorial)

Shake the kangaroo in Egypt (image thanks to the Australian War Memorial)

5. The determination outlines all denomination standard designs with a fitting edge to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Australia’s change to decimal currency on February 14th 1966 -February 14th 2016. Will these be included in the Mint and/or Proof sets for 2016? All coins from the 5 cent up to the $2 have the standard reverse with just a change to the obverse. We’ll still see the Rank-Broadley portrait of Queen Elizabeth II but each in the form of a pre-decimal ancestor, for example the 1 dollar mob of roos with the obverse bearing the IRB portrait inside an Australian florin as it last circulated in 1963 but without “1963 FLORIN” replaced with “FIFTY YEARS” and the date in the legends with “ELIZABETH II” and “AUSTRALIA” inside an ornamental border.

The 5c will depict a 1964 penny,
the 10c a 1964 threepence,
the 20c a 1963 sixpence,
the 50c a 1963 shilling,
the $1 a 1963 florin,
the $2 a 1938 crown.

6. It appears the mintmark, privymark and counterstamp dollar coins (broadly determined, not all may be minted) will be in honour of Australia’s first mintmark. The reverse of each will depict a wreath tied with a central ribbon with a representation of St Edward’s Crown much like what appeared on the reverse of Australia’s first Sydney sovereigns showing they were different from their British brothers. It will be inscribed “ROYAL AUSTRALIAN MINT”, “AUSTRALIA” and “ONE DOLLAR” each with it’s own special mark of issue. The image below courtesy of Drake Sterling Numismatics.

Australian 1855 Sydney Mint Sovereign

Australian 1855 Sydney Mint Sovereign

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