(70% copper, 5.5%
nickel, 24.5% zinc)
|Obverse Designers||Portrait of Her Majesty the Queen
1986 Arnold Machin
1991 Raphael Maklouf
|Reverse Designer||Leslie Durbin|
|Edge Inscription||DECUS ET TUTAMEN|
The Northern Ireland £1 coin, the third in the series of four, was introduced into circulation on 21 April 1986. Appropriately, Northern Ireland was represented by the flax plant, whose fibres have - for centuries - been woven into world famous linens. The coin carried the edge inscription DECUS ET TUTAMEN, ‘an ornament and a safeguard’. On the obverse was the Maklouf portrait of Her Majesty The Queen.
By 1980 it had become apparent that, with the general decline in purchasing power, the £1 unit of currency was more appropriate as a coin than a banknote. After consultations with many groups including retailers and special interest groups, the Government announced on 31 July 1981 that a new £1 coin was to be issued on 21 April 1983. Since its launch the £1 has always represented the United Kingdom and its constituent parts; England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.