World Coins

Pobjoy continues Father Christmas 50-penny series

Raymond Briggs’ depiction of Father Christmas is popular in the United Kingdom, and the subject of an ongoing coin series from the Pobjoy Mint. The colorful copper-nickel version appears here.

Images courtesy of the Pobjoy Mint.

Father Christmas, as Raymond Briggs envisioned him, is not your standard Santa Claus, but is a rather a grumpier interpretation of the stereotypical character.

For the fourth consecutive year, the Pobjoy Mint showcases this interpretation of Saint Nick on collector coins.

The new design is the second Christmas 50-penny issued on behalf of British Indian Ocean Territory.

This famous character first appeared in 1973 in Father Christmas, before making a second appearance in 1975 in Father Christmas Goes on Holiday.

He still looks like the Father Christmas we all know and love with his traditional large white beard and red suit, but Raymond Briggs’ Father Christmas is a down-to-earth working man, living in contemporary Britain with his pets and reindeer, coping with everyday domestic chores and preparing for another Christmas.

In the award-winning 1973 book, Father Christmas awakens from a dream of summer sun to discover it is Dec. 24, Christmas Eve — the start of his longest night’s work of the year. Much merriment ensues as Father Christmas travels the world, with a few snags along the way, to bring joy to children everywhere.

The 2021 coin shows Father Christmas holding his loyal dog with a decorated Christmas tree in the background. 

The obverse carries the Pobjoy Mint effigy of Queen Elizabeth II.

The coins are approved by the licensor and Buckingham Palace, which is very fitting as, in the book,

Four versions available

Four versions are available, with plain and colorful copper-nickel editions joined by two colorful Proof .925 fine silver versions, one being a piedfort (double thick) coin.

All of the coins measure 27.30 millimeters in diameter

Three of the coins weigh 8 grams, with the piedfort piece weighing 16 grams.

The plain copper-nickel coin comes in “Christmas decoration” packaging allowing it to serve as an ornament. The colorful copper-nickel  coin is in a greeting card. Both have an issue limit of 7,500 pieces, with the plain coin retailing for $17.95 and the colorful version selling for $19.95.

The silver coins are presented in a red box with certificate of authenticity.

The standard coin has a mintage of 1,999 pieces and retails for $74.95. The piedfort version has a mintage limit of 499 piece and costs $119.95.

To order the coins, visit the Pobjoy Mint’s website,

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