Home News Bank of England: replacement of Smith`s portrait on £20 notes

Bank of England: replacement of Smith`s portrait on £20 notes

Former Bank of England Governor Mervyn King (left) and former chief cashier Andrew Bailey (right) asked the UK public to nominate British artists, craftsmen, designers or filmmakers they would like to see replace Smith on the country’s £20 notes.

Announcing the contest at London's Victoria and Albert Museum, Bank of England governor Mark Carney said: "The design of these notes must command respect and legitimacy, and should inspire."

The Bank regularly changes who appears on its notes, and there was controversy in 2013 over the choice of Winston Churchill to succeed 19th century social reformer Elizabeth Fry on the £5 note.

It meant future notes would depict no women other than the current monarch Queen Elizabeth II.

The Bank received a petition signed by 35,000 people in protest, but the issue was resolved when the 19th century novelist Jane Austen was named as the new face of the £10 note from 2017.

The other figures on Bank notes are evolutionary theorist Charles Darwin on the £10 note and steam engine inventor James Watt and his business partner Matthew Boulton on the £50 note.