UK to destroy commemorative 50p coins in Brexit meltdown

Thousands of 50-pence coins minted to commemorate Brexit on October 31 will be melted down after Prime Minister Boris Johnson accepted an extension from the European Union, two people familiar with the matter said.

UK Chancellor of the Exchequer Sajid Javid had announced plans for millions of coins engraved with the date Johnson pledged to leave the bloc, but production was paused last week when it became clear there would be a delay.

The coins were already being minted so they could be put into circulation as soon as the UK left the EU.

On Monday, Johnson accepted the EU’s offer of a three-month extension to January 31, and the decision was taken for all the coins to be melted down, according to the people, who asked not to be identified. One of them said hundreds of thousands of the coins had been minted already.

A spokesperson for the Treasury said the UK will still produce a coin to mark its departure from the EU - whenever that takes place.

Javid’s predecessor, Philip Hammond, had also planned to mint a more limited number of the 50-pence coins to mark the original Brexit date of March 29.\

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