£5 - Elizabeth Fry - The images on the back of the note are related to the life and work of this social reformer. The main illustration shows Elizabeth Fry reading to prisoners at Newgate. In recognition of her work she was awarded the key to the prison and this is used in the design of the banknote.
£10 - Charles Darwin - As a young man Darwin was employed as the naturalist on board the ship HMS Beagle an illustration of which is depicted on the back of the note. Also pictured is an illustration of Darwin 's own magnifying lens and the flora and fauna that he may have come across on his travels.
£20 - Adam Smith - Smith is one of the fathers of modern economics. In one of his great works, An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations, Smith famously used the example of workers in a pin factory to describe the benefits created by the division of labour, and, as explained on the note, "the great increase in the quantity of work that results".
Old-style £50 - Sir John Houblon - Houblon was the first Governor of the Bank of England and the current £50 note was issued during the same year (1994) as the Bank celebrated its 300th anniversary. The design on the back of the note includes an image of Houblon's house in Threadneedle Street on the site of the Bank's present building.
New-style £50 - Matthew Boulton and James Watt - Boulton and Watt entered a partnership to develop and market steam engines. Initially these were for use in the mining and textile industries before they extended the innovation to benefit a wider range of industries in the UK and worldwide.
Names suggested by the public for use on Bank of England banknotes (103KB)
This list comprises names of individuals suggested by members of the public for use on Bank of England banknotes. The Bank reserves the right not to include suggested names, entirely at its discretion. In particular, it would not include fictional names, names which are not reasonably well known, and names which the Bank considers might cause public offence. Inclusion on the list does not imply any endorsement by the Bank.