Bank of Ireland to introduce polymer banknotes from 2019

6 November 2018

Bank of Ireland UK has today announced that it will introduce polymer banknotes in Northern Ireland from February 27, 2019.

The £5 and £10 notes will be the first polymer notes to go into circulation followed by the £20 banknote in 2020.

The new polymer banknotes will retain the now familiar iconic image of The Old Bushmills Distillery in County Antrim. The Old Bushmills Distillery is the world’s oldest licensed whiskey distillery – making triple distilled malt whiskey and producing both blended and single malt whiskey.

The current banknote design first went into circulation on April 22, 2008 to coincide with the 400th anniversary of King James 1 granting a license to the area around Bushmills to distil whiskey.

Ian Sheppard, Managing Director NI, Bank of Ireland UK: “Bank of Ireland has a rich heritage that includes issuing banknotes for more than 200 years.

“We remain at the forefront of banknote design technology and today’s announcement marks the single biggest change to Bank of Ireland bank notes in Northern Ireland in living memory.

“While the design remains familiar the new polymer notes are different in a number of ways. For the first time in our note history, the £10 note will have two arrangements of four raised dots in square formation, enabling physical identification for the visually impaired.

“The new notes will incorporate a clear window which can be seen from both the front and back of the notes and they will have a shiny iridescent area of ink which changes colour as you tilt the note.

“This important development in our note history will ensure our banknotes are cleaner, more durable, more environmentally friendly and, with enhanced features, more secure than ever before.”

Bank of Ireland is currently the largest issuer of banknotes in Northern Ireland. The £5 and £10 notes will bear the signature of the bank’s UK Chief Financial Officer, Mr. Thomas McAreavey.

Media contact:

Catherine Agnew at Smarts Communicate
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