The new £1 coin is a hit

William JordanUS Elections Editor
March 23, 2014, 9:31 AM GMT+0

When people see a picture of the new coin’s design, they overwhelmingly like what they see

The government recently announced that a new £1 coin is on the way. The coin is 12-sided (an homage to the threepenny bit), has a “bi-metallic” construction similar to the current £2 coin and will be “the most secure coin in the world”. It won't be introduced into circulation until 2017 – but most British people are already fans.

64% of British adults say they like the new coin when presented with pictures of the design. This includes 38% who “really like” the new £1 coin and another 26% who like it “a little”. Only 10% dislike the it (23% are neutral).

The coin, revealed in a surprise announcement before George Osborne’s 2014 Budget, also has cross party appeal. Labour supporters are much less likely than Conservatives to “really like” the coin (32% versus 54%), but the majority of each major party like the coin at least a little.

Perhaps the more interesting divide is by age. Only a bare majority (51%) of those aged 18-24 like the coin, and 22% dislike it. In comparison three-quarters (74%) of over-60s give the coin a thumbs up, and only one in 20 (5%) dislike it. One possible explanation is nostalgia: older respondents are much more likely to remember, perhaps fondly, the (also 12-sided) threepenny bit on which the new coin was based, which was taken out of circulation in 1971.

Another detail is interesting in light of the ongoing debate over whether Scotland will keep the pound if it votes for independence: voters in Scotland are the least likely of any region to have a positive impression of the £1 coin’s new look, by a margin of about 10 points.

While this poll focused mostly on public impressions of the coin itself, YouGov has also researched views about replacing the current counterfeit-prone £1 coin from a policy perspective. In this respect the new coin idea is also popular, supported by 63% of voters.

See the full poll results

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