A Penny for your Thoughts

It isn’t only metal detectorists who turn up old coins. So, too, do gardeners and here we have such a find. It isn’t Roman nor even medieval, but it is more than 100 years old. It’s a good old penny coin.

Old penny found at Beech House in Market Lavington

Old penny found at Beech House in Market Lavington

It features the head of King George V who reigned in the United Kingdom from 1910 to 1936. This coin dates from the early years of his time as King as we can see on the reverse side.

The coin's reverse side.

The coin’s reverse side.

It is dated for 1913.

This penny was found in the garden of Beech House on White Street in Market Lavington in 2014.

If the coin had been lost when it was new, then it would have been a member of the Viner Johnson family who lost it. But coins like this had a life of fifty years or more. From the 1930s, Beech House was the home of James Welch and family and in the 1960s Tom and Peggy Gye moved in. The coin could have been lost by any of them or of course by any house visitor.

Incidentally to purchase what that penny bought in 1913, you’d need about 36p today. And remember the old pennies needed 240 to make a pound which means about 90 fold inflation over the 101 years. But we are all much better off now and in income terms that penny is now about £1.37.

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