(70% copper, 5.5%
nickel, 24.5% zinc)
|Obverse Designers||Portrait of Her Majesty the Queen
2010 Ian Rank-Broadley
|Reverse Designer||Stuart Devlin|
|Edge Inscription||PRO TANTO QUID RETRIBUAMUS|
2010 saw the launch of an entirely new £1 coin series which focused on the four capital cities of the UK - the 'City Series'. It was the first time in a 'home countries' £1 coin series that two coins were released in the same year. The two 2010 £1 coins represented London and Belfast. This is the '2010 Belfast £1 coin'.
Belfast used a coat of arms on its seal as early as 1643, but it was not until 1890 that the arms were granted officially. The shield of the coat of arms of Belfast provided an appropriate reverse for the 2010 £1 coin which represented Belfast, Northern Ireland, in the 'City Series'. Since the city port of Belfast has always been a busy shipbuilding centre, it was not surprising that a sea-going vessel should dominate the shield. The triangular pattern came from the arms of the Chichester family, while the bell was a simple reference to the city's name and appeared on tokens issued by Belfast tradesmen in the seventeenth century. The motto of the arms PRO TANTO QUID RETRIBUAMUS - translated as 'what shall we give in return for so much' - was the edge inscription of the Belfast £1 coin.
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.