Saturday, 18 November, 2017

Check your pockets: it's the last chance to spend old fivers

BRITAIN-ECONOMY-FOREX-POUND The new notes have come under criticism from vegans
Kelvin Reese | 06 May, 2017, 03:12

British shoppers have just hours left to spend old paper £5 notes before they lose their legal tender status.

Shoppers are being warned that after Friday 5 May the old paper note featuring prison reformer and philanthropist Elizabeth Fry will cease to be legal tender, which means anyone who finds one in an old pair of jeans needs to take it to the bank or the Post Office to be exchanged.

The Bank of England said some banks and building societies may continue to accept the old notes after May 5th, but it would be at the discretion of each branch.

In fact, the value grew 10 percent in 2016, double its average rate over the past decade, as sterling's weakness fueled demand for the highest denomination fifty-pound note and by the introduction of a new polymer fiver, she said.

A public consultation has been launched by the Bank into how it produces new £20 polymer notes. "We would recommend that customers allow sufficient time to return old notes rather than leave it until legal tender status is withdrawn".

The polymer Churchill fiver entered circulation in September, since when it has been circulating in tandem with the paper £5 note.

The old paper £5 notes, when withdrawn from circulation, are shredded and turned into compost, according to the Bank of England.

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What happens on 5 May?

Alternatively, your bank or building society may be able to help you at your local branch.

The BoE, however, will continue to exchange the soon-to-be old notes at any time in the future in its offices at Threadneedle Street in the City.

In Scotland, leading banks started issuing their own polymer fivers last autumn, and since then they have gradually been withdrawing the paper version - however, there is no specific published final end date.

The Bank of England said 150 million of its paper £5 notes - the equivalent of about three for every adult in the United Kingdom - remain with the public.

And what about the old £1 coin?

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