Wednesday 7 March 2012: Two Pence
The 2008 version of the two pence coin features the upper right quadrant of the English Royal Arms; the Lion Rampant of Scotland. (In Scotland a different version of the Royal Arms is used which places the Lion Rampant in the upper left & lower right quadrants of the shield).
The design of the shield is shared across six coins (1p, 2p, 5p, 10p, 20p, 50p), that can be pieced together to form an image of the Royal Shield. This was the first time a coin design had been featured across multiple coins in this way
The current two pence coin weighs 7.13 grams, has a diameter of 25.91 mm and from 1992 was made from copper plated steel, rather than the bronze used prior to that date. For operational reasons the metal used reverted to bronze for a few months during 1998.
Copper-plated steel two pence pieces are lower in density than bronze two pence pieces, so are slightly thicker as the weight remained the same - a fact that becomes evident if you compare piles of 10 coins of each type.
The 2008 coinage was designed by Matthew Dent, a Welshman, who was criticised by fellow Welshmen since the Royal Arms do not contain a specifically Welsh symbol.
No 2 in the Currency series, No1 is here. Each is a work of art if you look closely.