The Queen’s 90th birthday is approaching soon and the Royal Mint released a £5 (AU$ 9.31) coin on Saturday to commemorate it. The coin featured a garland of nine roses designed by artist and sculptor Christopher Hobbs that recognises the Queen’s fondness for flowers and nature.
“My design for Her Majesty’s 90th birthday coin collection was inspired by the heraldic rose and the Queen’s love of flowers,” the Daily Telegraph quoted Hobbs as saying. “The central ‘EIIR’ is surrounded by a classical wreath of celebration. I have tried to make the roses more natural than heraldic, each one different from the other.”
The coins have been released in a number of finishes and metal varieties that include silver, gold, and platinum gold. They are available in prices between £20 (AU$37.25) and a remarkable £5,000 (AU$ 9,310) for the coins made from a rare variety of platinum.
The Queen completes 90 years on April 21, but to include her age on the coin would have been a controversial move.
“I thought it was important to have the 90 prominently on the coin, but I was told it raised a few eyebrows at the palace,” Hobbs told the Mail Online on Sunday.
“Apparently it’s not the done thing pointing out the Queen’s age but I think in this case it was absolutely necessary and the point was taken. I am told the design was submitted to the Queen and she passed it.”
The royal family will stage a dinner in her honour on the very day. Thousands are expected to take part in celebrations which will be organised to mark the occasion.
The Royal Mint is also offering the coin for free for the senior citizens who turn 90 with the Queen.