Public designs London 2012 coins


LONDON -- A range of 50 pence coins designed by the British public to commemorate the London 2012 Games have been released for circulation.

The 29 winning designs, from a total of around 30,000 entries, were chosen by a panel of independent experts and representatives from the Royal Mint, London 2012 and the International Olympic Committee.

Images on the coins reflect 29 Olympic and Paralympic sports, including boxing, swimming and gymnastics.

It is the first time in the Royal Mint's history that the public has designed coins for circulation. Only 16 designs have appeared on a 50p ($0.79) since its introduction in 1969.

London Organizing Committee chairman Sebastian Coe says "the 50ps will be part of a long-lasting, wide-reaching cultural legacy."