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Home > Banknotes > Withdrawn Banknotes

Withdrawn Banknotes

From time to time, we withdraw old banknotes after they have been replaced by a new version. All withdrawn Bank of England notes remain payable at face value for all time. They can be exchanged for new banknotes at the Bank of England, either in person in London or by post.

There is a different process in place for damaged or mutilated banknotes.
Withdrawal of the paper £10 note
The paper £10 note will be withdrawn from circulation in Spring 2018. Notice will be given at least 3 months prior to the withdrawal date.

Withdrawal of the paper £5 note
£5 Banknote Front £5 Banknote Back
Paper £5 notes have been withdrawn from circulation as of 5 May 2017.  After this date you can exchange them at the Bank of England in person or by post.

For more information, see our frequently asked questions.

The only £5 note that is now legal tender is the polymer £5 featuring Sir Winston Churchill, which was introduced in September 2016.

Retailers and businesses can download the paper £5 note withdrawal poster below, or order hard copies using the online order form on our banknote education materials page.
Paper £5 Withdrawal Poster - English Version
Paper £5 Withdrawal Poster - Cymraeg

Previously withdrawn banknotes

Below is a list of all banknotes withdrawn from circulation since 1988. To see all banknotes that are no longer in circulation, see the Withdrawn Banknotes Reference Guide.
Denomination​ Character on back of note ​ Date Issued ​ ​Date withdrawn
​£5 Elizabeth Fry​ 21.05.2002​ ​05.05.2017
​£50 ​Sir John Houblon ​20.04.1994 ​30.04.2014
£20​ ​Sir Edward Elgar ​22.06.1999 ​30.06.2010
£5​ ​George Stephenson ​07.06.1990 ​21.11.2003
£10 ​Charles Dickens ​29.04.1992 ​31.07.2003
£20​​ ​Michael Faraday ​05.06.1991 ​28.02.2001
​£50​​ ​Sir Christopher Wren​​ ​​20.03.1981 ​20.09.1996
£10 ​Florence Nightingale ​20.02.1975 ​20.05.1994
​£20​ ​William Shakespeare ​09.07.1970 ​19.03.1993
​£5​ ​Duke of Wellington ​11.11.1971 ​29.11.1991
​£1 ​Isaac Newton ​09.02.1978 ​11.03.1988
Information on returning old £5 notes