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General
Banknotes

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British Banknotes
Euro Banknotes
US Banknotes
Key Dates

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Banknotes

Paper money was (reputedly) first used in Click to show or hide the answer
First European country to issue banknotes (1661) Click to show or hide the answer
First country to issue polymer banknotes (1988 – often referred to as 'plastic') Click to show or hide the answer

British Banknotes

10/– 1928 Bank of England produces its first ever 10/– notes
1960 Series "C": 10/– and £1 notes include the Queen's portrait for the first time
1970 10/– note withdrawn from circulation
£1 1928 Bank of England issues its first £1 note since 1845
1960 Series "C": 10/– and £1 notes include the Queen's portrait for the first time
1978 Series "D" note shows Sir Isaac Newton on the reverse
1988 £1 note withdrawn from circulation
£5 1793 Bank of England issues the first £5 notes owing to gold shortages caused by the Napoleonic Wars
1957 Series "B": multi–coloured (predominately blue) £5 note issued
1963 Series "C" £5 note, showing the Queen's portrait, issued
1971Series "D" Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
1990Series "E" Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
2002Series "E" Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
2016Series "G" Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
£10 1759 £10 note first issued owing to gold shortages caused by the Seven Years War
1945 £10 notes withdrawn from circulation
1971Series "D" Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
1990Series "E" Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
2000Series "E" Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
2017Series "G" Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
£20 1945 £20 notes withdrawn from circulation
1971Series "D" Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
1992Series "E" Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
1999Series "E" Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
2007Series "F" Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
2020Series "G" Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
£501981Series "E" Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
2011Series "F" Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
Click to show or hide the answer

Note: two sets of £5, £10 and £20 notes were issued in Series "E".

Euro Banknotes

Unlike the coins, Euro banknotes are the same in all Eurozone countries (although each country prints its own notes).  The notes are made of cotton fibre, which makes for good durability, and depict examples of various classic European architectural styles (on both sides).

Value Main colour Architectural style
€5 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
€10 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
€20 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
€50 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
€100 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
€200 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
€500 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer

US Banknotes

Value Portrait on the obverse Illustration on the reverse
$1 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
$2 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
$5 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
$10 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
$20 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
$50 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
$100 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer

Key Dates

Bank of England (and the Bank of Scotland) founded; Bank of England issues its first (handwritten) banknotes Click to show or hide the answer
Banknotes first (partially) printed – cashier still had to sign them by hand Click to show or hide the answer
Bank of England moves to its present location on Threadneedle Street Click to show or hide the answer
£5 notes first issued Click to show or hide the answer
Notes fully printed from Click to show or hide the answer
Treasury begins producing 10/– and £1 notes in order to remove gold coins from circulation Click to show or hide the answer
Bank of England assumed responsibility for producing 10/– and £1 notes (from the Treasury) Click to show or hide the answer
Metal strip first included in British banknotes (£1 and 10/–) Click to show or hide the answer
All denominations above £5 withdrawn Click to show or hide the answer
Bank of England nationalised Click to show or hide the answer
The first coloured £5 notes issued Click to show or hide the answer
Sovereign (Elizabeth II) appears on Bank of England notes (10/– and £1) for the first time Click to show or hide the answer
Series "C" £5 notes issued, with the Queen's head shown for the first time Click to show or hide the answer
10/– note withdrawn Click to show or hide the answer
Series "D", with famous people depicted on the reverse, issued (£1, £5, £10, £20) Click to show or hide the answer
The first Series "E" note, with hologram, issued (£50) Click to show or hide the answer
£1 note ceased to be legal tender Click to show or hide the answer
Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee given responsibility for setting interest rates Click to show or hide the answer

© Haydn Thompson 2017