There's only a few days left to spend your old pound coins

With just a week to go, around 500 million old round pounds are still in circulation.

Chatting to the BBC, a Tesco spokeswoman said: "We've been updating our systems ready for the new pound coins, but to help customers who still have the old coins, we'll continue to accept round pounds at our tills and self-service machines for an additional week".

Andrew Jones, the Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury said, "The clock is ticking".

From Monday shops will be forbidden from handing out old £1 coins as change and will have the right to refuse to accept them.

A trade association representing around 170,000 small shops across the United Kingdom has also advised members to continue accepting the round coins.

The old pound coins are to be melted down to create new ones.

He said: "The hard work of the British public has paid off and I am delighted that more than 1.2 billion round pound coins have been returned".

THE old one-pound coin is being phased out completely on Sunday (15) but United Kingdom businesses said they have been given too little time to switch to the new one and many are planning to defy the deadline.

Security features on the new coin include 12 sides, a bi-metallic composition, a holograph and tiny lettering called microtext around part of the design.

Ritu Vohora investment director at M&G said: "While many shops are saying they will continue to accept the round £1 coin after 15 October lots of people have already started to check their piggy banks and glove compartments so they can spend or bank their round pounds".

However, the postal service won't swap old pound coins for new ones.

One pound coins were first launched on April 21, 1983 to replace £1 notes.

Speaking ahead of the deadline, which falls at the end of this week, independent retailer representative body Retail NI's Glyn Roberts urged retailers to take the October 15 deadline seriously.

Royal Mint are now encouraging all old pound coin owners to spend, bank or donate their coins before the deadline.

Several charities will be collecting the coins to raise funds.

It was also warned that continuing to accept the old £1 coins leaves businesses at risk of accepting counterfeits.