Earlier this month the Governor of the Bank of England, Mark Carney, unveiled the design of the new £20 note featuring the artist JMW Turner which will be issued on 20 February 2020.

The polymer £20 note contains sophisticated security features making it the most secure Bank of England banknote yet – and for the first time – the note incorporates two windows and a two-colour foil, making it very difficult to counterfeit.

The Bank’s Chief Cashier, Sarah John whose signature is appearing on Bank of England notes for the first time, said: “The new £20 is a really exciting next step in our move to polymer notes. This new note is our most secure, incorporating two see-through windows and a two colour foil for the first time. That makes it very hard to counterfeit and demonstrates our commitment to providing cash that can be used with confidence. Being our most common note, the transition to the new £20 is the most significant, but I am confident that retailers and businesses will adapt to the change.”

 

How retailers can prepare

Businesses can prepare for the new £20 note by taking the following steps:

1. Plan training for staff that handle notes: go to the new £20 website where you can order or download free training materials. Staff will need to be able to check both paper and polymer £20 notes while they co-circulate.

2. Continue to accept paper £20s: You can continue to spend and accept the current paper £20 note as normal. These notes will be gradually withdrawn as they are banked and notice will be given six months’ ahead of legal tender status of the paper £20 being withdrawn.

3. Engage with banknote machine suppliers to ensure any note accepting or dispensing machines will be updated – such as self-service checkouts, banknote authenticators and note counters.

4. Pledge support for the Banknote Checking Scheme for advice and best practice and to stay up to date with the latest updates on banknotes and training materials.

What you need to know about the new £20 note

Below are answers to some frequently asked questions regarding the launch of the new banknote.

When does this new £20 note enter circulation?

It’ll be issued on 20 February 2020.

What more can you tell me about the new £20 note?
  • It contains sophisticated security features and is the most secure Bank of England banknote yet.
  • It’s polymer, just like the existing £5 and £10 notes.
  • It incorporates two see-through windows and a two-colour foil, making it very difficult to counterfeit.
  • There’s a metallic hologram which changes between the word ‘Twenty’ and ‘Pounds’ when the note is tilted.
What do I do about the paper £20 note?

Even after the new polymer £20 note has been issued on 20 February 2020, you should continue to accept the paper £20 note. The public can still spend paper £20 notes as usual and these will be gradually withdrawn as they get deposited into banks by retailers and the public. We’ll give six months’ notice ahead of legal tender status of the paper £20 being withdrawn.

What do I need to do in advance of the new £20 coming out?

In preparation for the new £20 being issued on 20 February 2020, cash-handling businesses should take the following simple steps:

  • Speak to your suppliers to check that your banknote machines (eg: self-service checkouts, point-of-sale banknote authenticators, back office banknote authenticators/note counters) are updated and are ready for the new £20.
  • Make sure that all your staff who handle cash are aware and know what to expect on 20 February 2020. Go to www.thenew20.co.uk for free training and educational materials.
What do I do about the paper £20 note?

Even after the new polymer £20 note has been issued on 20 February 2020, you should continue to accept the paper £20 note. The public can still spend paper £20 notes as usual and these will be gradually withdrawn as they get deposited into banks by retailers and the public. We’ll give six months’ notice ahead of legal tender status of the paper £20 being withdrawn.

When is the £50 moving to polymer?

The Bank of England expect to issue the new polymer £50 note in 2021 – there’ll be further details about this in due course.

Earlier this month the Governor of the Bank of England, Mark Carney, unveiled the design of the new £20 note featuring the artist JMW Turner which will be issued on 20 February 2020.

The polymer £20 note contains sophisticated security features making it the most secure Bank of England banknote yet – and for the first time – the note incorporates two windows and a two-colour foil, making it very difficult to counterfeit.

The Bank’s Chief Cashier, Sarah John whose signature is appearing on Bank of England notes for the first time, said: “The new £20 is a really exciting next step in our move to polymer notes. This new note is our most secure, incorporating two see-through windows and a two colour foil for the first time. That makes it very hard to counterfeit and demonstrates our commitment to providing cash that can be used with confidence. Being our most common note, the transition to the new £20 is the most significant, but I am confident that retailers and businesses will adapt to the change.”

 

How retailers can prepare

Businesses can prepare for the new £20 note by taking the following steps:

1. Plan training for staff that handle notes: go to the new £20 website where you can order or download free training materials. Staff will need to be able to check both paper and polymer £20 notes while they co-circulate.

2. Continue to accept paper £20s: You can continue to spend and accept the current paper £20 note as normal. These notes will be gradually withdrawn as they are banked and notice will be given six months’ ahead of legal tender status of the paper £20 being withdrawn.

3. Engage with banknote machine suppliers to ensure any note accepting or dispensing machines will be updated – such as self-service checkouts, banknote authenticators and note counters.

4. Pledge support for the Banknote Checking Scheme for advice and best practice and to stay up to date with the latest updates on banknotes and training materials.

What you need to know about the new £20 note

Below are answers to some frequently asked questions regarding the launch of the new banknote.

When does this new £20 note enter circulation?

It’ll be issued on 20 February 2020.

What more can you tell me about the new £20 note?
  • It contains sophisticated security features and is the most secure Bank of England banknote yet.
  • It’s polymer, just like the existing £5 and £10 notes.
  • It incorporates two see-through windows and a two-colour foil, making it very difficult to counterfeit.
  • There’s a metallic hologram which changes between the word ‘Twenty’ and ‘Pounds’ when the note is tilted.
What do I do about the paper £20 note?

Even after the new polymer £20 note has been issued on 20 February 2020, you should continue to accept the paper £20 note. The public can still spend paper £20 notes as usual and these will be gradually withdrawn as they get deposited into banks by retailers and the public. We’ll give six months’ notice ahead of legal tender status of the paper £20 being withdrawn.

What do I need to do in advance of the new £20 coming out?

In preparation for the new £20 being issued on 20 February 2020, cash-handling businesses should take the following simple steps:

  • Speak to your suppliers to check that your banknote machines (eg: self-service checkouts, point-of-sale banknote authenticators, back office banknote authenticators/note counters) are updated and are ready for the new £20.
  • Make sure that all your staff who handle cash are aware and know what to expect on 20 February 2020. Go to www.thenew20.co.uk for free training and educational materials.
What do I do about the paper £20 note?

Even after the new polymer £20 note has been issued on 20 February 2020, you should continue to accept the paper £20 note. The public can still spend paper £20 notes as usual and these will be gradually withdrawn as they get deposited into banks by retailers and the public. We’ll give six months’ notice ahead of legal tender status of the paper £20 being withdrawn.

When is the £50 moving to polymer?

The Bank of England expect to issue the new polymer £50 note in 2021 – there’ll be further details about this in due course.

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