Blighty's 12-sided quid to feature schoolboy's posterior

Tails I win, says 15-year-old design comp laureate

A 15-year-old West Midlands lad has won the public competition to design the tails side of the forthcoming 12-sided British pound coin, the Royal Mint has announced.

David Pearce's rose, leek, thistle and shamrock ensemble triumphed over 6,000 rival entries for the honour to grace the decidedly retro polygonal quid, which pays homage to the classic threepenny bit, while boasting "multiple layers of cutting edge technology" intended to thwart counterfeiters.

Pearce, a student at Queen Mary’s Grammar School in Walsall, received the good news earlier this week in a call from Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne.

He said: "I was really excited to hear that I had won the competition to design the new £1 coin, but hugely shocked as well! I heard about the competition through my design teacher at school and I thought I had nothing to lose so I decided to enter.

"I spent a lot of time researching what coin designs looked like and what sort of designs would represent all parts of the UK before submitting my idea and I honestly cannot believe I have won."

The proposed 12-sided pound coin. Pic: The Royal Mint

The new pound was unveiled last year and is due to hit the streets in 2017. The high-tech nugget will pack "two different coloured metals and an iSIS (Integrated Secure Identification Systems) security feature", prompting Royal Mint chief exec Adam Lawrence to describe it as "the most secure circulating coin in the world".

Naturally, it didn't take long for coin-swallowing machine operators to bemoan the immense cost of adapting their kit to accept the new dodecaquid. The final bill for wrangling the UK's 100,000 pay-and-display machines, plus 450,000 vending machines and 60,000 payphones, could hit £100m.

On the flipside, the advanced coinage will see an end to the estimated £40m in fake pounds which find their way annually into parking machines, so you pays your money and you takes your choice. ®

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