The New £1 Coin Enters Circulation and Becomes Legal Tender

By Rachel Dettmer | 28th March 2017 | 14 min read


The UK's new 12-sided £1 coin officially enters circulation as of today with the initial release of around £300m coins.

Of the 30 billion coins in circulation across the UK today, around 1.6 billion are £1 coins. The Bank of England and the Royal Mint estimates that up to 1 in 30 of these 1.6 billion coins are actually fakes, which is why we’re getting a replacement £1 coin from today.

The design of the coin was open to the public via a competition back in 2015, and the final design was won by a 15-year old schoolboy. The coin’s design features four emblems to represent each of the nations of the United Kingdom - the English rose, the Welsh leek, the Scottish thistle, and the shamrock for Northern Ireland - emerging from a single stem within a crown.

Why Is The New Coin So Secure?

Gordon Summers, Chief Engraver at the Royal Mint believes the coin is “impossible” to forge with current technology. The coin features a “secret high security feature” which can only be detected with the use of specialist machinery. The combination of the coin's new design and weight add to the difficulty in being able to replicate it.

The Royal Mint have even added that the specialist engraving laser used to make the coins cost around half a million pounds to buy, and up to Christmas 2016, the UK was the only country in the world to mint coins with such specialist machinery.

What To Do With Old Coins

We have until Sunday 15th October 2017 to use the current £1 coin, after that date they will cease to be legal tender and become worthless. Around 400m pound coins are thought to be stored in piggy banks or saving jars across the country, so it’s important to swap any you currently have for the new version at your bank.

Between now and the 15th October, we’re free to use both versions of the coin.

Time For An Update?

Over the past 12 months, we’ve seen the introduction of a new £5 note and a new £1 coin. With the wages your employees receive updating, isn’t it about time you updated your payroll software in general?

IRIS Payroll Business is user-friendly, intuitive, powerful small business payroll software designed to help small businesses handle complex payroll legislation easily. The software comes with many helpful and useful features, such as the ability to rollback past payroll data and generate various reports, as well as being HMRC-recognised.

IRIS payroll software is regularly updated, helping you to stay on the right side of legislation, such as automatic enrolment, whilst also being user-friendly enough to learn and use quickly.

Book yourself on to a free, no-obligation software demonstration of IRIS Payroll Business using the buttons at the top and bottom of this blog, and learn how the software can save you time and hassle when running your payroll.

Book My Free Payroll Demo