Paddington Bear turns 60 this year and the Royal Mint are celebrating by dedicating a 50p coin to the famous children’s book character.
The coins are available in a range of finishes and prices start at £10 for a mint condition coin.
However, the value of these coins could be a lot more than you think.
Paddington coin sold for £16,000
Paddington made his very first appearance in Michael Bond’s A Bear Called Paddington on October 13 1958, and is still a favourite character of both children and adults today.
The Royal Mint designed a commemorative Paddington coin in one of its studios.
However, when one of the specialised 60th anniversary coins was accidentally released ahead of time a few months ago, it was found by a college student in Wales and sold on eBay for £16,000.
The student found the coin in her change after visiting a shop in Caerphilly, South Wales, just a few miles down the road from where the Royal Mint is based, in Llantrisant.
Check your collection
If you do manage to get your hands on one of the Paddington coins, it might be worth keeping it safe as you never know how much they could be worth to a collector one day.
If you happen to have a limited edition Paddington coin from previous editions, it’s also worth seeing how much it could now be worth.
Other Paddington Bear coins currently being sold on eBay are listed for as much as £3,000 pounds.
Coins and other memorabilia have been produced to celebrate Paddington’s milestones in the past, for example a silver coin was released by the Isle of Man in 2008 to celebrate the the bear’s 50th Anniversary.
This year’s anniversary is no different, with coins, limited edition Paddington Bear toys and the recent release of the last of Michael Bond’s Paddington stories, Paddington at St Paul’s.
Behind the coin designs
The coin’s designer, Dave Knapton, is a big fan of Britain’s much-loved bear and won an internal competition to design two new coins featuring Paddington.
Knapton wanted his designs to tell the story of how Paddington arrived in London from Peru, and was inspired by the bear’s adventures in and around some of London’s most iconic landmarks, which is where the bear’s story began.
One of the specially designed coins shows Paddington at the train station from which his name derives.
“I loved reading the books about Paddington when I was young, and felt a real sense of nostalgia as I was designing these coins,” said Knapton.
“Paddington was part of my childhood, but now he’s being discovered by a whole new generation. I wanted to bring his character to life and show him in a very realistic environment, so I positioned him on the platform at Paddington Station, showing Paddington waiting patiently on his battered suitcase for his new life to begin.”
Another coin shows the popular Peruvian bear outside Buckingham Palace waving a Union Jack on one side, while the other side depicts the queen.
“In the second design I chose to show him in front of Buckingham Palace. He is excitedly waving a flag, like the millions of other people who visit each year,” explained Knapton.