On the morning of July 1, 1916, the 1st Newfoundland Regiment advanced upon enemy lines near the French
village of Beaumont-Hamel; within a half-hour, all but 68 of the 801-man regiment were cut down by
enemy fire during one of the costliest days of the First World War. This fine silver coin pays tribute to the
brave soldiers who fought at the Battle of Beaumont-Hamel and honours the wartime contributions made
by Newfoundland, which was then a Dominion of the British Empire.
The reverse design by Canadian artist Silvia Pecota poignantly conveys the bravery and tragedy of
the Battle of Beaumont-Hamel where on the morning of July 1, 1916, the soldiers of the 1st
Newfoundland Regiment participated in the first ground attack of the Somme Offensive. In the
foreground, a young soldier advances in formation across No Man’s Land toward enemy lines. The
battle-scarred terrain provides little protective cover for the soldiers, who are in full view of the
enemy as they contend with the tangle of barbed wire defenses. The intensity of the artillery and
machine gun fire that awaited the Newfoundlanders is evident throughout this intricately engraved
scene, particularly in the foreground where the soldier assumes a slightly crouched stance while he
courageously moves forward with his rifle and bayonet. In the background, the gnarled appearance
of the “Danger Tree” is particularly symbolic as its remnants marked the spot where the
Newfoundlanders would face the most intense fire, and where so many of them would fall.
Selective gold plating showcases the winged figure of “Victory” as it appeared on the Victory
Medal, which was awarded to the allied soldiers of the First World War.
A poignant, heartfelt tribute to the wartime
contributions and sacrifice made by the people of
Newfoundland during the First World War.