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Home > Banknotes > Current Banknotes

Current Banknotes

There are currently four different denominations of Bank of England notes in circulation.

From 13 September, the new polymer £5 note will be issued. Find out more at

Denomination Note Series Character on back of note Date issued
£5 E (variant) Elizabeth Fry 21.05.2002
£10 E (variant) Charles Darwin 07.11.2000
£20 F Adam Smith 13.03.2007
£50 F Matthew Boulton and James Watt 02.11.2011

Click on any image below and learn more about the respective security and design features of each note.

Paper £5 features £10 features
£20 features £50 features

Security features help you to identify genuine banknotes.  Take your time to check your notes, particularly if light conditions are poor or you are handling a large number of notes. Look for the security features described in these pages.
Look at the note, and feel the note. Do not rely on one single feature. If you have doubts, compare the note with one that you know to be genuine.
There are some counterfeit notes about. They are completely worthless. Don’t get caught out – protect yourself and check your banknotes when you receive them.

It is a criminal offence to keep or pass on a note that you know to be counterfeit.
If you have a note that you believe is a counterfeit you must take it to the police as soon as you can. They will provide you with a receipt and send the counterfeit to the Bank for analysis. If the note is genuine reimbursement will be made in full.
With effect from 3 March 2015, the Bank of England began issuing into circulation £10, £20 and £50 notes bearing the signature of the current Chief Cashier, Victoria Cleland. These notes are the same design as those currently in circulation which bear the signature of Chris Salmon, the previous Chief Cashier, and of his predecessors Andrew Bailey and Merlyn Lowther. Cleland notes will circulate alongside the remaining Salmon, Bailey and Lowther notes, with the same status.  See the link below for more information.

Key Resources

New Fiver leaflet (3.8MB)
A detailed easy-to-follow guide about the security features on the new polymer £5 note issued September 2016
English | Cymraeg
"take a closer look" Booklet (13MB)
An easy to follow guide about the security features on all current banknotes
English | Cymraeg