The character selection process for the £20 banknote is ongoing but it is expected that it will cost less than £80,000 in total. The most significant part of this budget is the cost of running public focus groups to test opinions and reactions to possible characters. These would more than likely have been conducted regardless of the public nominations period and are essential to ensuring widespread acceptability of the currency.
Characters are an integral part of our banknotes, provide an important anti-counterfeiting role and are updated with the introduction of new banknote designs. They also provide an opportunity to celebrate those who have made outstanding contributions to British thought, innovation, leadership, values and society. There is significant public interest in who we feature on our notes and therefore it was decided to incorporate public nominations into the new character selection process.