Decision Maker Response
Bank of England’s response
Apr 30, 2013 — Thank you for providing your views.
The Bank has celebrated the lives of eminent British personalities on the back of its notes since 1970. It is usual practice to consider a number of candidates all of whom have been selected because of their indisputable contribution to their particular field of work, recognised with the benefit of lengthy historical perspective, and about whom there exists sufficient material on which to base a banknote design. Having said that, however, the choice of whom to celebrate on the banknotes is never easy, and any candidate will naturally have both supporters and detractors.
It is envisaged that Elizabeth Fry notes will remain in circulation for approximately another 4 to 5 years. It is likely that the Bank will have announced the next denomination to change and the next new character before then and that this announcement would, as always, give the Bank of England a chance to review whether the set of characters for the four denominations achieves a balance over a range of different types of contributions and across different fields.
As you are aware the final decision is made by the Governor, but all suggestions by the public for characters to appear on our banknotes are welcome and inform the process when a new note is under consideration. We do have a list of names that have already been suggested by the public on our website at: http://www.bankofengland.co.uk/banknotes/about/banknote_names.pdf . You may be interested to know that Mary Seacole already appears on the list. However, I will pass your other suggestion of Mary Wollstonecraft onto my colleagues.