14 September 2017

Austen replaces Darwin on the new £10 note

The new £10 polymer note being released into circulation by the Bank of England today features the 18th century novelist Jane Austen as the iconic face of the new note. The note was unveiled in July at an event at Winchester Cathedral, where Austen was buried 200 years ago.

The latest note is the fifth since the first £10 bank note was issued in 1759 and features the new polymer design aimed at raising the quality and durability of bank notes in circulation.

New security features

The note, which is 15% smaller than the previous £10 note, has many security features to assure customers and retailers the note they have is genuine and reduce counterfeiting.

These include a large see-through window with a finely detailed metallic image of Winchester Cathedral positioned over it. When the note is tilted, a multi-coloured rainbow effect can be seen. The foil '£' symbol in the window is silver seen from the front of the note and copper on the back. At the side of the window is a coloured quill which changes from purple to orange when the note is tilted.

Below the see-through window is a silver foil patch with a hologram that changes from the word 'Ten' to the word 'Pounds'. A three-dimensional image of the coronation crown is displayed and shows a multi-coloured rainbow effect when tilted.

On the back of the note there's a book-shaped copper foil patch containing the letters JA, immediately behind the silver crown on the front. If you look at the front of the note under ultra-violet light, the number 'Ten' appears in bright red and green.

There's also a tactile feature to help blind and partially-sighted people confirm its value, with two clusters of raised dots on the front left-hand corner. This feature doesn't appear on the new £5 note but will do on the new £20 note, due to be issued in 2020.

Strength and durability

Polymer notes are stronger. They can withstand 2.5 times more wear and tear than the paper versions. They are also more resistant to dirt and moisture and stay cleaner for longer.

When does the old £10 note go out of circulation?

Production began in August 2016, so millions of new notes have been printed and will be available for circulation straightaway from 14 September.

You can still use the old paper £10 note, featuring Charles Darwin, until spring 2018.

The final date will be confirmed by the Bank of England at least three months before the withdrawal date. Before that, you can deposit them into your Nationwide account at any of our branches.

How can I find out more?

The Bank of England has a dedicated website, thenewten.co.uk providing more information on the new £10 note and a free online training course and educational resources for retailers.

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