Five things you need to know about the new £1 coin

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First it was an all new £5 note, and now Royal Mint is preparing to launch a new £1 coin.

The new coin is set to come into circulation in March 2017 and is said to be the most secure coin in the world.

Gone is the old style round, all gold coin and in its place will be a 12-sided, bimetallic coin with a hidden high-security feature to protect it from counterfeiting.

1. It comes into circulation in March 2017

2. It will be 12-sided

3. The new coin will be bimetallic - the outer ring is gold coloured (nickel-brass) and the inner ring is silver coloured (nickel-plated alloy).

4. It features a new design showing the English rose, the Welsh leek, the Scottish thistle and the Northern Irish shamrock emerging from one stem within a royal coronet.

5. It is thinner and lighter than the existing £1 coin but is slightly larger.

Royal Mint said: “The current £1 coin is being replaced for the first time in over thirty years because it has become vulnerable to sophisticated counterfeiters.

“Approximately one in thirty £1 coins in circulation today is a counterfeit. “We are introducing a new, highly secure coin to reduce the costs of counterfeits to businesses and the taxpayer.”

Businesses are now being urged to ensure they prepare for the new coin coming into circulation.

There will be a six-month transition period between March and October 2017 when both the old £1 coin and the new £1 coin will be accepted but after October 2017, the old coin will no longer be accepted and distributed, though people will be able to deposit them in their bank accounts.

For more information on the new £1 coin, including what you need to do to prepare your business, see the dedicated website at www.thenewpoundcoin.com.`