Coin collectors reflect on Queen’s legacy as Canada prepares for currency change

With the passing of Queen Elizabeth II on Sept. 8, Canadian currency will eventually begin sporting the likeness of King Charles III. But while coin collectors are looking forward to the change, they’re also reflecting back on the Queen’s legacy as the most minted monarch ever.

“There are billions of coins out there with the Queen’s face on them because obviously she’s been around for 70 years,” said Brian Gibson with Provincial Stamp and Coin.

Gibson expects the demand for Queen-faced coins to increase as the change over happens.

“Generally people kind of collect the end of something or the beginning of something – true collectors collect everything in between – but lots of people save things at the end of an era lets say and then again they save things from the beginning of an era,” he said.

Larry Dalman, vice president of the Manitoba Coin Club, says there’s a lot of collectible currency out there with the Queen’s likeness on it.

“She has been a fixture on the coin since her father passed away, and has been prominently on every coin struck that Canada makes,” he said.

Dalman says the first time Queen Elizabeth II appeared on Canadian currency was actually before she became Queen, “(They) put out a 1935 bill set just for that year with the royal family on it, which included the young princess Elizabeth on the $20 bill at the age of eight,” said Dalman.

He says some of the rarest bills out there are part of a set that was recalled in 1954, “When somebody looked closely at the bill – at the hair – what they were seeing looked like a devil’s head in it, or a devil’s face,” he said.

Dalman says he’s not sure when we will start to see King Charles III show up on Canadian currency.

“Depends on when we need replacement coins … we don’t know when they’ll start striking them,” he said.

He adds that the rest of the commonwealth countries will also be preparing for the transition, looking ahead to what bills will be coming out.

A spokesperson for the Royal Canadian Mint tells CTV News that the federal government needs to make the decision and set the timetable for the currency change.

All money in circulation with the Queen’s face is still legal tender.

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