We are very pleased to
release commemorative stamps depicting the coins issued in 1971 when Britain's
monetary system saw its biggest change for more than 1000 years.
On 15 February 1971,
Guernsey, along with the rest of the British Isles, adopted a decimal coinage
system and began issuing a full range of coin denominations from 1⁄2
penny to 50 pence.
None of the original coins
issued in 1971 carry the Queen's portrait as they do today, and instead feature
the arms of the Bailiwick of Guernsey on the obverse, consisting of a red
shield with three gold lions. The first use of the Queen's portrait on
Guernsey coins intended for circulation was not until 1985.
With the exception of the ½
pence coin, each of the coins featured on our 50th anniversary
stamps depicts Bailiwick associations: -
50p – The reverse of the
seven-sided 50 pence coin bears the Ducal cap of the Duke of Normandy, whilst
the Arms of the Bailiwick of Guernsey in the background.
68p – The reverse of the 10
pence coin depicts the famous Guernsey cow breed, better known as Guernseys or
the Golden Guernsey.
70p – This variety of lily,
Nerine sarniensis, seen on the reverse of the five pence, is known as
Guernsey’s National Flower and is often referred to as the Guernsey lily.
85p – Built in 1571, Sark
Windmill is depicted on the reverse of the two pence coin and appears on the
stamp to commemorate the windmill’s 400th anniversary.
95p – Close to Alderney’s
coastline, the rock of Les Etacs is home to almost 6,000 pairs of Gannets from
mid-February until late September. The gannet is a symbol of Alderney.
£1.02p – This stamp bears
the half pence coin, which on the reverse has the wording ‘½ New Penny’ against
a background of the Arms of Guernsey, depicted on the obverse.