It was while Andrew Bailey was Chief Cashier that the Bank of England introduced the so-called Adam Smith £20. This was quite a departure from previous issues because for the first time the serial numbers appeared on the back of the note (P405.) This note bristled with security features including a thick holographic thread on the front with images that alternated from Adam Smith to the £ symbol. A portrait of Queen Elizabeth II is on the front with a portrait of Adam Smith 18th century philosopher on the back. He is regarded as the father of modern economics and alongside his portrait is a view of a pin factory. In his magnum opus The Wealth of Nations he used the illustration of a pin factory to propose his theory that the division of labour increased productivity.
The current Governor of the Bank of England is Andrew Bailey. He also served as Chief Cashier at the Bank between 2007 and 2011, which meant his signature appeared on banknotes. He succeeded Mark Carney whose signature also appeared on banknotes – in Canada rather than the UK! We offer Crisp Uncirculated examples of the £10 note issued during Bailey’s tenure. (B400) A mature portrait of Queen Elizabeth II is on the front and the portrait of Charles Darwin is featured on the back alongside a vignette of a hummingbird. Crisp Uncirculated and of course long-vanished form circulation.
Given we now have a new polymer £50 in circulation, we thought that now might be a good time to look back at the paper issues of the £50 first introduced in 1994. The design was chosen to mark the 300th Anniversary of the bank’s founding in 1694. The portrait of the first Governor of the Bank of England, Sir John Houblon, appears on the back. His tenure is remembered today in the uniform of the bank’s gatekeepers which was based on the livery of Sir John Houblon’s own staff. A vignette of an early gatekeeper and a view of the façade of Houblon’s house in Threadneedle Street also features. The Houblon £50 on offer have with the signature of Andrew Bailey who, it so happens, is the current Bank of England Governor (B404)