New Britannias Revealed With High-Tech Features

Author: Corey McDowell - Economics Editor

Published: 29 Sep 2020

Last Updated: 2 Feb 2023


The Royal Mint has unveiled the new 2021 Britannia bullion coins, with enhanced anti-counterfeit features to deter criminals. This follows the trend set by other world mints when producing gold and silver bullion coins. The Royal Canadian Mint were possibly the first mint to produce coins which have enhanced security details in 2013 and they have proved to be popular with gold investors and coin collectors since then.

2021 Gold Britannia

The new gold bullion coins were officially released on the 12th October. What sets the 2021 Britannias aside from previous designs is the special security features on the coin, which can be seen when angling the coin in the light. These features include:

  • A latent image - Acts like a hologram and changes from a padlock to a trident when the coin is positioned at different angles. A latent image first appeared on British coinage on the £2 coin in 1997.
  • Surface animation - Micro details on the coin combine to create the illusion of waves rolling behind the figure of Britannia. These are created using advanced micro-engraving lasers.
  • Micro-text - The inscription Decus et Tutamen surrounds the figure of Britannia. This translates to ‘an ornament and a safeguard’, and is also created using specialist micro-lasers.
  • Tincture lines – This depicts patterns and colours on the surface of the coin.

The Mint has definitely taken inspiration from other worldwide mints, such as the Royal Canadian Mint and the Perth Mint. Such coins, like the 2013 Canadian Gold Maple and the Silver Kangaroo Series, have security features engraved by micro-lasers which make them extremely difficult to forge.

The Mint’s chief engraver, Gordon Summers, commented:

‘By focusing on the natural reflection of the metal, and using advanced new technology, we have created a unique and highly safe coin which gives customers complete confidence’

Andrew Dickey, divisional director of precious metals at the Mint, also added:

'Our Britannia bullion range is already one of the most sought after in the world, and these innovative new security features make it even more appealing for investors. Simply by moving the coin, you can authenticate it as a genuine Royal Mint product, giving investors complete confidence, whether they are buying directly from us or from our partners'

2021 Silver Britannia

Silver Britannia Collectors Kept Waiting

It wasn't immediately clear that the new design characteristics would also feature on the 2021 silver Britannia. However, on the 12th October it was confirmed that the new security features will also appear on the 2021 edition.

2022 Platinum Britannia

New Enhanced Security Features

Although the 2021 platinum Britannia did not have the new security features, we're pleased to see these were added onto the 2022 platinum Britannia coins.

Our Range of Bullion Britannias 

Cheap Bullion Britannias

We offer some of the cheapest prices in Britain for gold Britannias and silver Britannias. Britannias are a great investment for UK residents due to their status as British legal currency, so are capital gains tax (CGT) exempt. Gold and silver Britannia coins are both easily our most popular bullion products and are always in demand!

Alternative Security Features 

This is not the first time the Royal Mint have put ground-breaking security details on their coins. We have a Royal Mint Quality Control article on our website, where you can see more details on their alternative ‘security features’.

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