The life and sacrifice of First World War nurse Edith Cavell will be officially recognised through the individual release of her commemorative £5 coin, Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne made the announcement today (12 October 2015), on the 100th anniversary of her execution.
Edith Cavell was a British nurse working in German-occupied Belgium during the First World War, who saved the lives of soldiers from both sides. She was tried for treason and executed for helping Allied soldiers escape across the border to the Netherlands.
The 2015 £5 coin, released earlier this year in a boxed set as part of the Royal Mint’s commemoration programme of the First World War, will now be available to the public as a single coin for the first time.
Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne, said:
Edith Cavell is a national hero, who demonstrated the most incredible bravery. I wanted to make sure that on the day of the 100th anniversary of Edith’s execution the Royal Mint made her commemorative £5 coin available as an individual, so her sacrifice can be commemorated.
The Royal Mint have confirmed that 500 of the coins will be made available, depicting the scene of Edith tending to a wounded soldier with a portrait-style design of her in uniform as the background.
Inspired by the words of Laurence Binyon’s poem, Edith Cavell, the coin’s inscription reads ‘SHE FACED THEM GENTLE AND BOLD’.
The Edith Cavell coin is available on the Royal Mint’s website.