The Royal Mint has partnered with Disney to reveal its latest commemorative coin, bringing the original and much-loved illustrations of the beloved Winnie-the-Pooh to the 50 pence for the first time. The new coin forms forms part of a wider collection of special 50p coins featuring Winnie-the-Pooh and friends.
Developed in collaboration with Disney, the 50 pence coin uses the original watercolour illustrations of E.H. Shepard, with the first coin in the series featuring Winnie-the-Pooh alongside his jar of honey.
The limited edition coin is available in a range of finishes, including base metal, Silver and Gold. Shepard’s illustrations have been digitally printed on each, which the Royal Mint says ‘brings them alive in vivid detail and colour.’
Daniel Thorne, product designer at The Royal Mint and part of the collaboration to have worked on the Winnie-the-Pooh collection, said: “Working with original illustrations from E.H. Shepard, supplied to us by Disney, my biggest priority with the coin’s design was to ensure we do these wonderful images justice.
“As the original maker of coins, The Royal Mint has a long history of exquisite craftsmanship and this coin is no exception. Bringing the illustrations of E.H. Shepard to life took a lot of craft and care.
“From the honey bee motif that runs throughout the series, to the grassy mound Pooh is sitting on, we tried many different techniques to create the flawless effect of watercolour on the coin, eventually settling on the one you’ll see on the final version.
“I’m honoured to have been able to work on this exciting coin. Winnie-the-Pooh was a huge part of my childhood and forms some of my fondest memories. So I wanted to make sure this series of coins truly encapsulated the spirit of Pooh Bear and all his friends.
“Creating these coins was a labour of love and I hope that collectors can appreciate the beauty in each and every design in the range.”
James Campbell at The Shepard Trust, added: “It’s wonderful to see the beloved Winnie the Pooh immortalised on an official UK coin for the first time. The craftsmanship involved in replicating E.H. Shepard’s original watercolour illustrations is truly remarkable.
“The Royal Mint has done an exceptional job in creating a collection that will be treasured for years to come by Winnie the Pooh fans of all ages.”
Clare Maclennan, divisional director of Commemorative Coin and The Royal Mint Experience, at The Royal Mint, said: “Over our 1,100-year history we’ve minted coins to commemorate key moments and figures in Britain’s history, including literary icons, like Shakespeare and Wordsworth through to Beatrix Potter’s mischievous Peter Rabbit, and we’re delighted to now add A.A. Milne’s loveable Winnie-the-Pooh to the list.
“Our childhood character coins are encouraging a new generation of coin collectors and we’re delighted to add this iconic character and his friends, to our range. We’ve all grown up with Winnie-the-Pooh and he remains a cherished character, not only in Britain but across the world.
“We anticipate the coins being hugely popular, especially in the lead-up to Christmas and look forward to both children and adults alike, enjoying the collection.”
Along with the Winnie-the-Pooh coin, The Royal Mint also revealed the next two coins in the collectable series, which feature Christopher Robin and Piglet respectively. These will be available later in the year.
Winnie-the-Pooh was first published in 1926 by A.A. Milne and was inspired by his son, Christopher Robin Milne, who was born 100 years ago this year. Winnie-the-Pooh was based on Christopher’s teddy bear, Edward.
Father and son then named him ‘Winnie’ after a black bear called Winnie that lived in London Zoo and ‘Pooh’, after a swan they met on holiday.
These stories from a father to his son have now been published in countries across the world, making Winnie-the-Pooh a global icon and a key part of the childhood and lives of millions of people.