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First UK plastic banknotes enter circulation in England and Wales

Sep 14, 2016

LONDON, England - A new polymer five pound note featuring Sir Winston Churchill has just entered circulation in England and Wales.

Scotland has had a limited number of its own plastic five pound notes in circulation since March 2015, with mass issuance planned for next month.

The new banknote, introduced by the Bank of England (BoE) at the beginning of summer, is made of thin and flexible plastic. The innovative material is cleaner and aims to protect the money from damage and forgery, according to the BoE.

“The use of polymer means it can better withstand being repeatedly folded into wallets or scrunched up inside pockets and can also survive a spin in the washing machine,” said BoE Governor Mark Carney.

The banknotes are expected to last two-and-a-half times as long as current cotton-based notes.

The fivers should be followed by a ÂŁ10 note featuring novelist Jane Austen next year and a ÂŁ20 bill with seascapes painter J.M.W. Turner by 2020.

First UK plastic banknotes enter circulation in England and Wales
The Governor of the Bank of England, Mark Carney



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