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Derin Clark

Online Reporter
Published: 20/02/2020
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Consumers taking money out of ATMs or receiving change at tills may be the first to get their hands on the new £20 note, which entered circulation today.

According to the Bank of England, the new polymer £20 note is the most secure banknote yet and includes two see-through windows and a two-colour foil, which make it very difficult to counterfeit. It features a self-portrait of the artist JMW Turner , which was painted in 1799. It is expected that half of all ATMs across the UK will be dispensing the new note within two weeks.

Speaking at Tate Britain, which houses the original self-portrait of JMW Turner used for the £20 note design, Mark Carney, Governor at the Bank of England, said: “Our banknotes celebrate the UK’s extraordinarily rich and diverse heritage and highlight the contributions of its greatest citizens. Turner’s art was transformative. I am delighted that the work of arguably the single most influential British artist of all time will now appear on another two billion works of art – the new £20 notes that people can start using today.”

The new £20 note is also the first to feature the signature of Sarah John, Chief Cashier at the Bank of England. She said: “Moving the £20 note to polymer marks a major step forward in our fight against counterfeiting. I am very grateful to everyone across the cash industry who has made this transition possible and I hope the public enjoy using their new Turner £20s.”

What to do with your old £20 notes

The old paper £20 notes are still valid and consumers can continuing spending them as normal, with banks, shops and other retail outlets continuing to accept the old notes. The Bank of England has not stated when the old notes will be removed from circulation yet. Normally, the Bank of England gives consumers six months’ notice about when old notes will be removed from circulation and they are usually gradually removed from use.


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