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30th Sep 2022

Today is the last day to use your old £20 and £50 notes

Tobi Akingbade

A lot has changed this month

We’ve all been dealing with a lot this September – from a new monarch to a new prime minster and higher bills so it’s right on brand for today (30 September) to be the last day you can use paper £20 and £50 notes.

Last year over 23 million Brits used no cash, it still accounted for 15 percent of all payments.

Majority of use contactless, but there are still some old fashioned folks who still have the paper notes in their possession, or hiding under their beds and tucked away in their pockets.

“If you have any paper £20 or £50 notes, we encourage you to use them or deposit them with your bank or Post Office before 30 September 2022,” Bank of England said.

“As paper notes are returned to the Bank of England, they are being replaced with the new polymer £20 notes featuring JMW Turner, and polymer £50 notes featuring Alan Turing.

“After 30 September, only our polymer notes will have legal tender status.”

They added: “Once the 30 September 2022 deadline has passed, you will no longer be able to use Bank of England paper notes in shops, or use them to pay businesses.

“After this date, many UK banks will accept withdrawn notes as deposits from customers. Some Post Offices may also accept withdrawn notes as a deposit into any bank account you can access with them.

“The Bank of England will always exchange any withdrawn notes, including paper notes we have withdrawn in the past.”

This change, however has nothing to do with the Queen’s passing and King Charles’s ascension as the paper notes extinction was planned way in advance.

Though the updated bank notes with King Charles ‘ image will be revealed by the end of the year, the currency won’t actually be in circulation until mid-2024.

This will be a continuation of the current polymer series and no additional changes to the banknote designs will be made, the Bank of England said.

There are around 27 billion coins currently circulating in the UK bearing the effigy of the Queen. These will be replaced over time as they become damaged or worn, and to meet demand for additional coins.

Coins featuring a portrait of King Charles will gradually enter circulation from December and will appear on 50p coins first, The Royal Mint has said.

In keeping with tradition, the King’s portrait faces to the left, the opposite direction to the Queen.

A commemorative £5 coin has also been created and features two new portraits of the late monarch on the back.

Nicola Howell, chief commercial officer at the Royal Mint, said King Charles worked closely with sculptor Martin Jennings – and “personally approved the effigy”.

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