Though many posters encouraged the men of Britain to enlist, the image of Kitchener has since come to stand for the call to fight for King and country that saw men respond in their thousands. It is to this instantly recognisable image that the experienced artist John Bergdahl turned to create his stirring design: ‘Your country needs you’.
Perhaps you wish to honour someone in your family who played their part, or pay your respects as the nation remembers. You will want to secure one of these Outbreak 2014 UK £2 Silver Proof Piedfort coins – produced by The Royal Mint, as were the medals presented to those who fought so long ago. Your coin is presented in luxury befitting its status – for Piedfort coins are highly sought after – with a Certificate of Authenticity, handsome display case and a fascinating booklet exploring the country at the outbreak of war, Kitchener’s campaign and the men who volunteered to fight with Britain from across the Commonwealth.
In 1914 Lord Kitchener was appointed to mastermind a recruitment campaign that would go on to create one of the largest volunteer armies ever known in Britain. The reverse of your coin was designed by John Bergdahl, creator of the coins struck to celebrate the christening of His Royal Highness Prince George of Cambridge. He was inspired by Kitchener’s persuasive image, which perfectly reflects the sense of optimism that was shared in those first days of the First World War, an optimism that today can also be viewed with sadness.
Your coin’s edge inscription reads, ‘The lamps are going out all over Europe,’ recalling the words of Foreign Secretary Sir Edward Grey on the eve of war. Although no veteran who lived through the First World War is here today to receive the thanks of a grateful nation, a full century later Britain remembers, and marks, this important anniversary.