Artist engraves EU stars onto Brexit 50p coin 'to reflect both sides of debate'

Artist Sam Harris has engraved European stars onto a Brexit 50p piece to illustrate 'both sides' of the nation's views (SWNS)

An artist has defaced a new Brexit 50p piece by engraving it with the European stars so it “reflects both sides of the debate”.

Sam Harris, 20, had a metal stamp featuring the twelve five-pointed stars specially made. He then used a hammer to mark the face of the coin which he plans to later put back into circulation.

Mr Harris tried to get a British crafter to make the stamp – but after he was quoted £150 he found a company in Europe who could make one for £25 in a matter of days.

Artist Sam Harris punched the EU stars onto a commemorative Brexit 50p piece 'to reflect both sides' of the issue (SWNS)

The coins were introduced on 31 January to mark Britain’s exit from the European Union.

Mr Harris, from north London, said: "I do political art and this was just another piece. I've only made one at the moment.

"I'm making the coin two sided and using it as a way to say there are two sides to the Brexit debate.

"Stamping the stars is me making a one sided coin two sided, like things should be."

The metal stamp used to deface a commemorative Brexit coin with EU stars (SWNS)

Last year, Mr Harris took part in a large scale exhibition which involved defacing bank notes, called Rebel Not Taken.

"I thought this would be a good continuation," he said.

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"There is a history of protesting in this way and this is a continuation of that protest.

"Supposedly it's illegal to deface money, but I think it's just an archaic law."