§ Mr. Maxwell-Hyslop
asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he will ensure that a panel of registered blind people and the Royal National Institute for the Blind are consulted about any proposed change in the design of United Kingdom coins and that the polygon shape of the 50p piece will be retained to distinguish it by touch from any other coin.
§ Mr. Brooke
My right hon. Friend the Chancellor of the Exchequer will take careful note of the views of the blind before decisions are taken about the future of the coinage. The Royal Mint's recently published pamphlet on the future of the coinage will shortly be available in braille. While the replacement of the existing 50p coin cannot be ruled out at this stage, a survey conducted by Nottingham university suggests that most people would like to see it retained.