Paper Money

Bank of England to continue to redeem older 50 notes

This poster explains that the Bank of England will continue to exchange old-style notes featuring a portrait of Sir John Houblon on the back, as it would exchange any other of its bank notes that no longer have legal tender status.

Image courtesy of the Bank of England.

Missed the deadline to exchange old-style Bank of England £50 bank notes? No problem, according to the bank.

Bank officials have been reassuring citizens they can still exchange their £50 bank notes bearing the portrait of Sir John Houblon even though the notes have been withdrawn from circulation.

The bank withdrew the Houblon notes, which were originally issued in 1994, on April 30, 2014.

Bank officials have said the Bank of England will continue to exchange Houblon £50 notes, just as it would exchange any other Bank of England note that no longer has legal tender status. According to the Bank of England, most other banks and building societies continue to accept Houblon £50 notes for deposit to customer accounts; however, agreeing to exchange the notes is at the discretion of individual institutions.

Barclays, RBS, NatWest, Ulster Bank and the Post Office have all agreed to exchange Houblon £50 notes for members of the public — up to the value of £200 — until Oct. 30, 2014.

The £50 bank note currently holding legal tender status features portraits of Matthew Boulton and James Watt on the back and was introduced in November 2011.

Houblon was the first governor of the Bank of England, serving from 1694 to 1697. Boulton was an English manufacturer, and Watt was his partner.

For questions about the exchange of the Houblon £50 notes, visit the Bank of England’s website at

See related articles: 

Bank of England approves use of polymer for future notes.

Financing the Bank of England.

Jane Austen to be on Bank of England £10 note in 2017.


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