HC Deb 25 February 1896 vol 37 c1064
MR. J. F. OSWALD (Oldham)

I beg to ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether, in the future coining of bronze coins, an alteration could be made in the obverse (or Queen's head) side of the farthing, so as to make the same unlike the obverse side of the half-sovereign, and thus prevent the mistakes and fraud alleged to have arisen from the present similarity in appearance of the obverse sides of the two coins?


No, Sir, I do not think that this can be done. The present design of the farthing was arrived at last year after full consideration. It was decided that the effigy of the Queen on all denominations of the coinage of this country should be of the same design. On the reverse of the coin the word "Farthing" is stamped in clear letters, and the edge is plain instead of milled, so that there is an obvious difference between the farthing and the half-sovereign. The danger of fraud exists only when the farthing is quite new, and I will consider whether it is possible to alter the colour in some way so as to reduce the resemblance.