A RARE coin featuring Oxford icon Sir Roger Bannister is helping to mark the 50th anniversary of the 50 pence piece. 

The neurologist, who ran the first sub-four minute mile in Iffley Road, is being commemorated as part of a special set of coins unveiled to mark the occasion. 

First released in 2004 to celebrate the 50th anniversary of his record-breaking run, Sir Roger is depicted mid-stride as he crosses the finish line in three minutes and 59.4 seconds.

Oxford Mail: Sir Roger Bannister completes the first sub-four-minute mile at Oxford’s Iffley Road Running Track on May 6, 1954

The Royal Mint has released the special coins in honour of the 'revolutionary' seven-sided 50p, first introduced in 1969.

It said the designs had been carefully selected to celebrate key cultural milestones and favourite pieces of coin collectors.

The set also includes a 50p marking Kew Gardens’s 250th anniversary, a reissue of the previous ‘new pence’ 50p design and two coins celebrating the centenaries of the Scouts and Girl Guides.

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Nicola Howell, director of the consumer business at The Royal Mint, said: “Since the 50p entered UK circulation 50 years ago, the distinctive design has become a popular addition to the nation’s pockets and wallets.

“Over the years, the commemorative editions that The Royal Mint has released to mark British cultural and historical highlights have also become incredibly popular sparking something of a collecting craze.

“We’re delighted to be revealing the special 50p British Culture commemorative coin set to mark this historic anniversary, which features some of the nation’s most loved 50 pence pieces.”

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The commemorative 50p set will be available to purchase from www.royalmint.com