Plastic £5 Notes Will Be Distributed Soon
If you didn’t know, the £5 note is going to be replaced by a plastic version by the Bank of England. The plastic note will feature a picture of Sir Winston Churchill and a picture the Queen. Beneath Churchill there is a section of his first speech a Prime Minister, which reads “I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears and sweat”.
These new note will be released on Tuesday and the Bank of England will no longer distribute paper copies of the £5.
The new note is printed on a polymer and means that the note will be cleaner and stronger than a paper note.
The £5 note is being replaced because it makes counterfeit paper notes redundant. The £10 and £20 notes will be the next to change to a plastic note.
The reason they are going to be printed on a polymer is because they are more durable, cleaner and harder to fake compared to paper notes. They are supposed to last about 5 years. They can also survive a spin in the washing machine. The plastic means that they are more resistant to moisture and dirt helping them survive longer.
The new notes will be smaller than the paper versions. At first, the notes may stick together, but after being used for a while this will no longer happen. Even though the notes are made out of plastic, they can still be folded. The material is thin and flexible enough that they can still be folded.
Until May 2017, you can use the current paper notes. However, after May 2017, you will no longer be able to use them. You will need to exchange the notes with the Bank of England for the plastic notes.
As of now, they have been no announcements about changing the £50 notes to plastic. They will announce the material £50 notes will be made out of in the future.
There are currently 329 million £5 in circulation currently. There has been 440 million polymer £5 notes made, which will gradually be introduced to public circulation as of Tuesday. The 440 million notes equate to £2.2 billion.
Last year almost 22,000 bank notes needed to be replaced because they were damaged. Half of them were because they had been torn. Being torn will be less of a problem with the new plastic notes.
Next year a plastic £10 will be released featuring a picture of Jane Austen and in 2020 there will be a £20 note with JMW Tuner.