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UCLan graduate designs The Royal Mint’s first UK £50 face value coin

03 December 2015

Lyndsey Boardman

Jody Clark sees second design used by The Royal Mint in less than a year  

A University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) graduate, who earlier this year designed the new coinage portrait of Her Majesty The Queen, has now designed The Royal Mint’s first UK £50 face value coin.

Jody Clark, who graduated from the University in 2004 with a degree in illustration, was announced in March as the winner of an anonymous competition to design the ‘fifth portrait’ of Her Majesty The Queen on UK coins. It’s a triple success as not only will Jody also see his royal portrait paired with his design for Britannia on the UK’s first ever £50 face value coin, he also became a dad for first time earlier this year.

Jody said: “Having my portrait of The Queen selected for Britain’s coinage was an incredible experience, but now, seeing the portrait combined with my Britannia design on the UK’s new £50 coin is a double honour. Becoming a dad for the first time too has completed what has been an amazing year for me.”

 

“Having my portrait of The Queen selected for Britain’s coinage was an incredible experience, but now, seeing the portrait combined with my Britannia design on the UK’s new £50 coin is a double honour."

The figure of Britannia is a popular representation of Britain that has been reimagined through the centuries, and often reflects the United Kingdom at a moment in time. Jody’s contemporary Britannia is strong and elegant, standing with the British lion at her side.

The Royal Mint’s Director of Commemorative Coin, Anne Jessopp, said: “It seems apt that these two familiar British figures, both designed by Jody Clark, feature together on the UK’s first face value £50 coin in the year that The Queen became Britain’s Longest Reigning Monarch, and Britannia returned to the circulating coinage.”

The first in The Royal Mint’s face value coin range, the £20 for £20 coin marking the birth of Prince George of Cambridge in 2013, was warmly welcomed and sold out within days, whilst the £100 for £100 ‘Big Ben’ coin was another sell-out ‘first’ in December 2014. Early signs are that Jody Clark’s £50 for £50 Britannia / fifth effigy pairing will be equally popular.

 

"It’s an overwhelming feeling to know that something I created will be reproduced millions of times on the United Kingdom’s coins, and to think that The Queen herself has approved my design."

Jody joined the Royal Mint in 2012 and is part of an in-house team of skilled engravers. He began his design in the traditional method, hand sketching an initial composition. However, thanks to modern technology, Jody was able to access unlimited images of The Queen, helping him to achieve his artistic aim – to capture a warm likeness of Her Majesty just as the nation views her.

He commented: “The Queen hasn’t aged that much since Ian Rank-Broadley FRBS created the last effigy, so I made some key changes that would make the new portrait stand out in its own right. The regalia I chose was key, I included the crown that Her Majesty wore at her coronation, I thought that was quite fitting.

“My training at The Royal Mint definitely prepared me for this challenge, I was able to draw upon my experience of creating designs for the purpose of minting. It’s an overwhelming feeling to know that something I created will be reproduced millions of times on the United Kingdom’s coins, and to think that The Queen herself has approved my design.”