Businesses have been urged to prepare for the introduction of the new 12-sided pound coin, described as the "most secure of its kind in the world", before it is released into circulation in March.
Cash-handling firms and those that operate vending machines have been directed by the Treasury to a website - thenewpoundcoin.com - to ensure a smooth transition with the circular 30-year-old pound coin set to go out of circulation.
The 12-sided replacement's security features include a hologram-like image that changes from a £ symbol to the number 1 when the coin is seen from different angles.
The Government claims the coin will combat counterfeiters who have around 45 million counterfeit £1 coins currently in circulation.
Some of the measures businesses are being advised to put in place include:
- adapting or upgrading equipment to handle the new coin.
- training staff on the features of the new £1 coin.
- making arrangements with banks to return the current and new coins in separate packaging.