Outer: Nickel-brass (76% copper, 4% nickel, 20% zinc)
Inner: Cupro-nickel (75% copper, 25% nickel)
|Obverse Designer||Ian Rank-Broadley|
|Reverse Designer||John Bergdahl|
|Edge Inscription||YOUR NOBLEST SHIPPE 1511|
Experienced coinage artist John Bergdahl created a design that shows the Mary Rose in her prime, complete with the all-important banners and streamers that made Tudor vessels so beautiful and instantly recognisable. The carrack Tudor warship profile is clearly shown, with the high ‘castles’ fore and aft, and an impressive number of heavy guns. Looking at the stern of the ship, it’s easy to see the gradually narrowing width of the decks, designed to make the ship more stable and to make boarding more difficult. The edge inscription reads ‘YOUR NOBLEST SHIPPE 1511’.
The first base metal £2 coin was issued in the United Kingdom in 1986 to commemorate the Thirteenth Commonwealth Games which was held in Scotland. Commemorative £2 coins continued to be issued in single colour nickel-brass for special occasions. After a review of the United Kingdom’s coinage in 1994, it emerged that there was a requirement for a circulating £2 coin. A consultation process took place with the vending machine industry, members of the public and special interest groups such as the RNIB and Age Concern. The consensus of opinion from the consultation favoured a bicolour coin because it would be easily distinguishable from the other coins in circulation. The bimetallic £2 coin was launched on 15 June 1998 and millions were released into circulation.