A rare 2p silver coin donated in the Royal Berkshire Hospital ‘cash for coins’ box has garnered more than £800 on eBay after a keen hospital volunteer recognized its rarity value.
The volunteer, Becky Jennings, noted that it was not a regular bronze coin and called up an auction house. They said that the coin was a rare mint-made error, which could fetch up to £1000. In reality, too, the coin went for £802.03 – 40,101 times its face value.
Striking the 1971 coin in silver was the major error made by the mint during the minting process because the cupro-nickel blank was left inside a barrel.
The money raised from the auction will be used to fund the urology department of the hospital along the theme of ‘2p or not 2p’. Before this, the only other silver 2p coin to be auctioned was the one found by a petrol station owner in Poole, Dorset and it fetched £1,200.
The Royal Mint says that there are hundreds and thousands of 50p and 2p coins in circulation and the recently minted sell far above their face value.