Jan 272016

Fifty years ago in February 1966, Australia introduced decimal notes and coins, marking the end of its British-style currency system of pounds, shillings and pence. Initially there were six cent-denominated coins with designs by Stuart Devlin and four dollar banknotes.


Commemorate this major milestone in the history of Australian currency with your pick from these collector packs showcasing Australian pre-decimal and decimal coins:

Aust-Currency-Changeover-Pack_100 Australian Currency Changeover
Collection Pack (1953 – 1984)
Pence-to-Cents-Pack_100 Pence to Cents Changeover
Premium Pack (1964-1966)
FiftyCentsPack_100 1966 50c 50th Anniversary Pack

Have you seen our remarkable 50th Anniversary of Australian Decimal Currency 2016 1oz Silver Proof Two-Coin Set?


Jan 222016

The 11 ships of the First Fleet set sail from Portsmouth, England on 13 May 1787. Aboard were more than 1,300 colonists, including approximately 730 male and female convicts from Britain’s overcrowded prisons. The expedition was under the command of Captain Arthur Phillip, who had accepted instructions from the British Home Secretary, Lord Sydney, to establish Britain’s first colony in Australia.

The ships began arriving in Botany Bay on 18 January 1788, which 17 years earlier had been charted by Lieutenant James Cook. Despite Cook’s indication that the land was suitable for cultivation, Phillip quickly determined that the area would not support a settlement. Within days the First Fleet moved north to Port Jackson, anchoring at Sydney Cove on 26 January.

By the 100th anniversary of Phillip’s landing in 1888, the population numbered almost three million and the first centenary of white settlement was celebrated with enormous enthusiasm. In a forerunner of Australia Day, most capitals declared Anniversary Day a public holiday with fireworks, banquets, regattas and other festivities taking place throughout each colony.

Medal making was an important way of recognizing progress and prosperity, which had developed in leaps and bounds since the discovery of Australian payable gold in 1851. In Sydney, the colonial government jumped at the chance to commemorate important achievements and historic events – none more significant than the arrival of Phillip’s mission.

W.J. Amor produced the dies for this bronze medal struck at the Sydney Mint – which was following the established tradition of medal making at its venerable parent, the Royal Mint in London. Distributed to “prominent citizens” as part of official celebrations in 1888, the medal is now a prized part of The Perth Mint’s historic collection.


The obverse portrays a familiar symbolic figure of ‘Australia’ (Britannia) seated with a sailing ship and lighthouse in the background. The word ‘Australia’ appears above the main image; beneath it can be seen the initials GR (King George III – reigned 1760-1820) separated by a crown, and the momentous date of the settlers’ arrival.

The reverse depicts the Arms of New South Wales within a wreath of native flora headed by a crown and the monogram VR. The motto ORTA RECENS QUAM PURA NITES translates to recently risen how bright thou shineth.


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Jan 152016

The following collector coin releases are now sold out at The Perth Mint.

2ozGoldPrHRKoala14 Australian Koala
2014 2oz Gold Proof High Relief Coin
Maximum Mintage: 250
LRM2ozGoldAqua HM Queen Elizabeth II – Longest Reigning Monarch
2015 2oz Gold Proof Coin w/ Aquamarine Gemstone
Maximum Mintage: 350
2ozGoldHRKanga15 Australian Kangaroo
2015 2oz High Relief Gold Proof Coin
Maximum Mintage: 250


Jan 122016

May Gibbs, who had arrived in Australia from England as four year-old in 1881, doubted English fairies could survive under the Australian sun, and this is how she came up with her inimitable Australian characters, the Gumnut Babies – of whom the most famous are Snugglepot and Cuddlepie.


Written and illustrated by May, a highly-talented artist, Tales of Snugglepot and Cuddlepie chronicled the adventures of two bare-bottom cherubs who wore green gum nuts for hats. Their world was exclusively inspired by the fauna and flora of the Australian bush, including their adversaries, the big, bad Banksia Men, who Gibbs modelled on the appearance of a type of Banksia ‘cone’ she probably first noted as a child in Western Australia.

BanksiaManThe children of Australia immediately embraced May’s unique fairy folklore. Immensely popular from the time it was published in 1918, Tales of Snugglepot and Cuddlepie has remained in print ever since! Along with other stories about the Gumnut Babies, May’s books continue to delight youngsters of all ages in whose imaginations her characters will live forever.

2016 Snugglepot & Cuddlepie™ 1/2oz Silver Proof Coin

Housed in newborn gift card packaging, this coin portrays an original May Gibbs illustration of Snugglepot and Cuddlepie peeking out from a pair of gum nuts. A beautiful gift to mark the arrival of a new baby, the Australian legal tender release has a maximum mintage of just 5,000.


Following the first official Australian coin to celebrate May Gibbs’ Snugglepot and Cuddlepie in 2015, The Perth Mint has issued a second coin portraying her iconic bush characters .

Related story: Perth Mint issues first coin to celebrate May Gibbs’ Snugglepot and Cuddlepie



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Jan 062016

Under the Chinese zodiac, the Year of the Monkey starts on 8 February 2016. This stunning 2016 Year of the Monkey 1oz Silver Proof Coloured Coin is the perfect gift or keepsake for anyone celebrating the arrival of the ninth animal of the lunar calendar!

Solve this month’s anagram for your chance to win this superb coloured coin featuring two monkeys and peach fruit, which in Chinese culture symbolises long life and immortality .

Clue: Spring Festival


How to enter: Email your answer to anagram@perthmint.com.au marking your reply ‘January 2016 Anagram Competition’ in the subject line. Please include your name, address and telephone number. Entries close on 1 February 2016. Eligible entrants will be included in the free draw and the winner will be notified by telephone or email. Terms and conditions.

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September 2015 anagram competition winner: Congratulations Robyn Ongheen of Queensland for the correct answer of ‘Latrobe Tasmania’.