Representation of the People
2nd February 2018
The Royal Mint marks significant political milestone on a 2018 50p coin
The Royal Mint is marking a significant milestone in Britain’s political history with a 50p coin design highlighting the incredible moment when the Representation of the People Act 1918 passed through Parliament, a 100 years ago.
Servicemen over the age of 19, men over 21, and significantly, women over the age of 30 and ‘of property’, were finally given the right to vote after many years of pressure from progressive groups lobbying for changes to the voting system.
The coin was designed by Royal Mint Graphic Designer Stephen Taylor, who said of the coin: “My design uses the familiar idea of a British queue, to suggest a line of people waiting to cast their votes at the ballot box. I began with the strong, celebratory pose of the woman holding her ballot aloft, followed by the soldier, the working-class man and the suffragette. I paid careful attention to their poses and clothing, showing the different classes of society finally being given a political voice after years of struggling to be heard.”
Helen Antrobus of the People’s History Museum, Manchester said, “It’s really great to see a Representation of the People Act 1918 50p amongst the new coin designs for 2018. I wish it were possible for all of us to carry one in our pockets to carry forward that message of equality first started by the Act 100 years ago, reminding us that we still have work to do.”
Collectable editions of the coin are available from The Royal Mint website www.royalmint.com, in finishes ranging from Brilliant Uncirculated to precious metal gold and silver proof. Circulating coins bearing the design are likely to be seen in circulation later this year.