British Coin Key Dates
This page contains a list of all the non gold slightly scarcer British predecimal coin 'Key Dates' since 1821, for all denominations.
Please be aware that condition is always by far the most important thing where coin collectors are concerned. Even if you do have a coin from a date listed on this page it doesn't mean it's highly sought after or that rare, just that it's usually a little harder to find than its 'dated neighbours'. Often key date coins if Fine grade or below are worth little more, or sometimes about the same as the commoner dates.
The list was compiled including all the usual scarcer date British coins (some of them legendary!) with additions of other coins made according to current catalogue values. I have not included mint errors (e.g letters/numbers struck on top of other characters), proofs, gold coins or colonial issued coins.
Most of the coins on this page are worth between £1 and £10 with the excessively rare coins (marked with a ' * ') being worth a small fortune. All silver coins issued before 1920 are sterling (.925) Silver, and all coins issued between 1920 and 1946 contain 50% silver (.500) so because of the bullion content these coins are usually worth a little more than the post 1947 'Silver' coins.
By denomination, Lowest first:
1842. 1844. 1849. 1859. 1860 (Larger copper type with date under the Queen). 1863. 1895 (Bun head Victoria). 1937* Edward VIII.
1825. 1843. 1845. 1860* (Larger copper type with date under the Queen). 1871. 1902 (Lower tide on reverse). 1904 slightly scarcer than normal. 1957 with a calm sea is scarcer.
1837. 1843. 1849. 1860 bronze bun type is scarcer in certain varieties, the most commonly found is very common. 1861 as 1860. 1869. 1871. 1875H ('H' below date). 1895 with no sea. 1902 with low tide. 1912H ('H' Next to date). 1918H ('H' Next to date). 1918KN ('KN' Next to date). 1919H ('H' Next to date). 1919KN ('KN' Next to date). 1926 with newer head type. 1933* Pattern only. 1937* Edward VIII. 1950. 1951. 1954*.
Threepence (Silver small type)
1852. 1853. 1893 With Jubilee head. 1937* Edward VIII. 1945* (Must be silver) strictly a colonial coin, but worth putting in for it's £4,000 value! 1953 (Must be the silver maundy type).
Threepence (Brass 12 sided type)
1937* Edward VIII. 1946. 1949.
Fourpence or Groat
1851. 1852. 1853. 1888 with Jubilee head.
1824. 1825. 1826. 1827. 1828. 1836. 1837. 1848. 1854. 1862. 1863. 1882. 1893 Not to be confused with maundy common issue. 1937* Edward VIII. 1952. 1954 Just slightly scarcer.
1848. 1850. 1851. 1879. 1882. 1889 with smaller head. 1905. 1957 Scotish type. 1958 English type. 1959 Scotish type.
1849. 1854 (MDCCCLIV). 1891. 1892. 1905 (In fact, any Edward VII with a readable date are getting harder to find). 1925. 1932. 1937* Edward VIII. 1954 and 1959 in high grade only.
1823 Without shield in garter. 1824 Bare head type. 1839. 1841. 1887 young head (Not priced high now, but low mintage, so an educated prediction). Generally all Edward VII are scarce but especially 1905 and 1903. 1925. 1930. 1937* Edward VIII. 1954 and 1959 only in high grades.
All pretty common with the exception of the George V and VI pattern issues.
Generally all Victorian Young head and Gothic head Crowns are scarce (1837-1853. 1893 with LVII on edge. 1898 with LXI on edge. 1900. 1902 is scarce, especially in high grades. 1927 (proof only). 1928. 1929. 1930. 1931. 1932. 1933. 1934*. 1936. 1937* Edward VIII.
Please note that some coins in high grades are worth considerable sums even if they are not on this list! This list reflects (as accurately as possible) coin mintage numbers and demand, and when a demand drops coin prices go down. Although this is rare, it is not impossible.
Chris Perkins 3rd June 2003 and updated 28th July 2015.
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Read about predecimal denominations.
Read about grading coins.