Jan 302015

In ancient Greek mythology, Hera was the wife of Zeus and Goddess of women and marriage. In tribute to Hera, The Perth Mint has issued a rimless, high relief, antiqued coin made from 2oz of 99.9% pure silver.

This clip offers insights into the the processes used to strike, clip and apply the special antique finish to each coin in the mintage of just 2,000. Individually applied by hand, antiquing adds deep tone with a unique grained effect on the surface of each coin for an aged appearance.

Goddesses of Olympus – Hera 2015 2oz Silver High Relief Coin


Jan 192015


Cats make wonderfully loyal and loving companions, both for their owners and for one another. Capturing two gorgeous kittens in an endearing pose, this beautiful coin exudes such feline love and affection. Made from 1/2oz of 99.9% pure silver, it makes a “purrfect” Valentine or wedding gift – and a joyous keepsake for every cat lover!


Jan 132015

Taking place between 30 January and 1 February 2015 at the Estrel Convention Centre in Berlin, the 44th World Money Fair promises to be a numismatic weekend like no other. Highlights include the first issue of many collector and commemorative coins, numerous prize draws and fascinating attractions.

Perth Mint 2015 WMF Coin Show Special

A key attraction on The Perth Mint stand (number – E8) is our WMF Coin Show Special. This stunning release is the first proof quality 1oz Australian Kookaburra silver coin (regular strike) to be issued since 2005.


The Australian Kookaburra 2015 1oz Silver Proof Berlin Coin Show Special features Stuart Devlin’s original Kookaburra design from 1990 with a P25 anniversary mintmark. Just 2,500 of these of these coins will be released in display packaging featuring a World Money Fair shipper.

For collectors not present in Berlin, look out for the opportunity to acquire any remaining mintage from this very limited release from The Perth Mint website on 2 February.


Jan 092015

While Australian women were not permitted to serve in battle on the frontline during World War I, many of them volunteered to serve in the Australian Army as nurses, medical workers and ambulance drivers. Their contribution to the war effort was enormously significant, with their support proving essential to military medical service.

The Australian Army Nursing Service (AANS), formed in 1903, was made up of volunteer nurses who were willing to serve in the event of a national emergency. The AANS sent 2,139 of its members overseas during World War I and a further 423 served in military hospitals at home in Australia.

They endured extremely trying circumstances on hospital ships anchored off Gallipoli or in field hospitals that consisted of tents close to the front line in France. With little sanitation, and a lack of fresh water and medical supplies, nurses also had to contend with the often extreme weather conditions. The tents offered little to no protection from the freezing European winter or the hot, mosquito-infested summer. The medical ships also presented great challenges, as supplies and water were limited, and the motion of the ship made performing even the more simple tasks extremely difficult.

Constantly understaffed and in danger of contracting the illnesses and infections of those they cared for, nurses worked tirelessly around the clock, dedicated to making the lives of their patients as comfortable as possible. Eight Australian nurses received the Military Medal for their bravery.


Group of Tasmanian nurses including Clare Deacon, who enlisted in the Australian Imperial Force on 29 November 1914 as a staff nurse. Clare served at Mena throughout the Gallipoli campaign and was promoted to nursing sister in December 1915 when she left for France. On the night of 22 July 1917, she was one of four Australian nurses to rescue patients from burning buildings of the 2nd Australian Casualty Clearing Station near Armentières, which had been bombed. For “coolness and devotion to duty” she and her nursing colleagues were awarded the Military Medal. [Australian War Memorial J00721]

On home soil, Voluntary Aid Detachments (VADs) were formed following an appeal “to the women of Australia” by Lady Helen Munro Ferguson, founder of Red Cross in Australia. Not formally qualified as nurses, these volunteers received instruction in first aid and performed the duties of nursing orderlies and other supports in Australian hospitals, convalescent homes, and on troop trains.

VADs were restricted from traveling overseas by the Australian Defence Council. As a result, many chose to travel on their own initiative and join British detachments, often in Australian hospitals. The policy was changed in 1916 after a request from Great Britain, and the first detachment of 30 official Australian VADs to serve overseas left Australia in September 1916.


Australian Red Cross Voluntary Aid Detachment members, washing up outdoors after a public function, Sydney, c. 1918. [Australian War Memorial P01102.020]

During the course of the war, campaigns ran throughout Australia encouraging women to join Red Cross or to volunteer their services on the home front. Posters were an integral part of these campaigns, and artists were often commissioned to produce works that would inspire women to support Australian troops through fundraising efforts, quasi-nursing duties, organising comfort packages to send to soldiers, and volunteering to work in Red Cross’s Wounded and Missing Enquiry Bureaux.

One such artist was Scottish-born David Henry Souter, who settled in New South Wales in 1887 where he worked as a journalist and illustrator for books and magazines, including the Bulletin, and was one of the first artists to start designing Australian posters. One of these was the ‘Help’ poster designed by Souter during the First World War to inspire Australian women to support the war effort.

Australian Posters of World War I – Australian Red Cross
2015 1oz Silver Proof Rectangle Coin

The second release from Australian Posters of World War I depicts a superb coloured representation of David Henry Souter’s Australian Red Cross ‘Help’ poster.  It features a nurse in a stylised Red Cross uniform standing with her arms outstretched, as if appealing for help, in front of a red cross. In the background is a ship, an ambulance and a field hospital displaying the Red Cross emblem.

Issued as Australian legal tender, no more that 5,000 of these outstanding 2015 coins will be released.


The coin is housed in a upright display case with a latex centre that displays the coin’s reverse and obverse. It is presented in a illustrated shipper which comes with a numbered Certificate of Authenticity.


Produced in association with the Australian War Memorial.

The red cross emblem is an internationally recognised symbol used to identify those providing impartial humanitarian assistance and protect them from harm in times of armed conflict. The use of the emblem is restricted under both international and Australian law in order to ensure that this meaning continues to be understood. In Australia, the use of the emblem without the authorisation of the Minister of Defence is a criminal offence.


Jan 062015

Tales of  Snugglepot and Cuddlepie, the gumnut babies, is a much-loved children’s classic.

The story was created by May Gibbs, whose parents migrated from England to Australia in 1881 when she was four-year old. The family lived in Western Australia, but later in life May moved to Sydney, where she and her husband built a home at Neutral Bay. Called Nutcote, the house is now a museum.

The young May developed a deep love and understanding of the Australian bush, often exploring the countryside on her pony, Brownie.

Both her parents were proficient artists and May soon followed in their footsteps, the natural bush surroundings inspiring her paintings and sketches.

From Tails of  Snugglepot and Cuddlepie™ by May Gibbs.

From Tales of Snugglepot and Cuddlepie by May Gibbs.

Just before she turned 13, May contributed a double-page spread to the West Australian newspaper, a pen and ink drawing called ‘Little Folks’, which showcased her exceptional talent.

She became a botanical illustrator and on three occasions returned to England to study fine art. While there in 1911 she was successful in having her first book published.

May’s work struck a chord with Australian people who identified with her portrayals of the local landscape and it unique fauna and flora. The fantasy world she created using these familiar elements delighted readers from that time forward.

Link here to listen to May reminiscing about her life and work in the ABC podcast: May Gibbs: Queen of the Gumnuts.


Her most famous book, Tales of  Snugglepot and Cuddlepie, was first published in 1918 – and has never been out of print since.

Modelled on the appearance of nuts from the eucalyptus (gum) tree, the two tiny gumnut characters decide to leave the safety of their treetop home to discover what humans look like.

[Above photo] Portrait of May Gibbs ca 1916. Source: National Library of Australia – nla.pic-vn4583514.

From Tails of  Snugglepot and Cuddlepie™ by May Gibbs.

From Tales of Snugglepot and Cuddlepie by May Gibbs.

As their escapade unfolds, they encounter all manner of bush characters, including the villains of the story – the big bad Banksia men!

Touching the lives of generations of Australian children by bringing the Australian bush to captivating life, May’s beautiful stories and illustrations occupy a special place in Australian literature.

2015 Snugglepot and Cuddlepie 1/2oz Silver Proof Coin


This 2015 coin is the first official Australian release to portray May Gibbs’ iconic bush characters. The reverse shows her charming illustration of Snugglepot and Cuddlepie sitting on a branch either side of their friend, Little Ragged Blossom.

Struck by The Perth Mint from 1/2oz of 99.9% pure silver, no more than 5,000 of these highly collectable coins will be released.

Each coin is housed in a themed presentation booklet making it an ideal newborn baby gift.