Czech National Bank issues special coin to commemorate 100 years of Czech Radio

A special CZK 200 silver coin has been issued by the Czech National Bank to mark the 100th anniversary of Czech Radio. The coin’s design features images related to the history of the radio’s first broadcasts.

May 1923,  broadcast of a musical performance from the scout tent in Kbely | Photo: archive of Czech Radio

It was way back in 1923, specifically on May 18 at 8:15pm in the evening, that Czechoslovak Radio began broadcasting from what was a Scouts’ tent in Prague’s Kbely district. Czechoslovakia thus became only the second country in Europe to establish regular broadcasting. At first these were only hour-long broadcasts, but soon they grew into longer and more varied segments that even included broadcasting in English and Esperanto as early as 1924.

The popularity, size and resources of the country’s radio grew rapidly from that point onwards and Czechoslovak Radio would go on to also play important roles in the country’s history by providing vital information to its citizens during the 1945 uprising against Nazi occupation forces and the 1968 Invasion of Czechoslovakia.

No wonder then that the centenary the country’s public broadcaster is being celebrated in great style. Czech Radio itself has prepared a variety of events and shows commemorating the anniversary this year – and especially this week. Meanwhile, the Czech Post has issued special stamps marking the occasion.

Photo: Česká pošta

Now, the Czech National Bank has joined in, by issuing its own special CZK 200 silver coin. On one side, it features pictures of a radio microphone, transmission masts and of the historic broadcasting facility in Kbely. The other side of the coin shows the tent from which the first broadcast was made and the logo of Czechoslovak Radio. The design is the work of academic sculptor Marie Šeborová, who has already created several commemorative coins and medals in the past.

“We are very much honored to see the Czech National Bank issue a special commemorative silver coin marking the 100-year anniversary of Czech Radio. It will give both our fans and collectors a unique opportunity to get hold of a permanent piece of memory marking this important occasion,” the director of Czechia’s public broadcaster, René Zavoral, said in reaction to the announcement. He added that the centenary is just the beginning in what is sure to be a long journey ahead for Czech Radio.

A total of 30,000 of these coins are being issued by the country’s central bank. These are divided into two categories – 11,242 pieces are of a cheaper variant, while the majority is of higher quality distinguished by a highly polished coin field and frosted relief. Each coin has a diameter of 31mm and weighs 13 grams. The coins were produced by the company Česká mincovna, a. s. and are composed of an alloy with a silver to copper ration of 925:75.

While the nominal value of the coin is CZK 200, the actual selling price is likely to be different as it is based on the current value of silver, production costs and VAT.