An undated handout photograph, taken at an unknown location, shows part of a hoard of gold coins, made between 1847 and 1915, discovered hidden in a piano. British officials are trying to trace the owner of a trove of gold coins worth a "life-changing" amount of money found stashed inside a piano. (Portable Antiquities Scheme/Trustees of the British Museum/Peter Reavill via AP)
Photo: Peter Reavill/AP
Photo: Peter Reavill/AP

‘Life changing’ amount of gold coins found hidden in old piano

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The piano’s owners sent the musical instrument off to be retuned and repaired in Shropshire, England, before Christmas. Repairmen found a collection of full and half sovereigns that date all the way back to 1847, according to BBC News.

Peter Reavill, liaison officer for the British Museum's Portable Antiquities Scheme at Shropshire Museums told BBC News the coins had “the potential of yielding a life-changing sum of money.” 

“It is a lifetime of savings and it's beyond most people,” he said.

The full sovereign is worth at least 220 Euros, or $236.37, according to Alexandra Whittaker, who works in communications at London auction house Fellows & Sons.

“If one was particularly special, like if it had something wrong with it, or there were fewer minted that year, then it would be worth a lot more,” she said.

An inquest is being held in an effort to determine whether the finding can officially be declared a treasure.

If the inquest finds that the coins were hidden with the intent of eventually being found, it would be considered a treasure and become property of the Crown, according to BBC News. If the owner of the coins, or their heirs, can prove ownership, the Crown’s claim will be void.

The inquest will end April 20.

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