The plans to release a new plastic £50 note has been announced by the Bank of England.
The £5 and £10 notes have already been switched to polymer. Previously, the bank has announced that the £20, which is set to feature artist JMW Turner, will be changed in 2020.
The Bank of England will solicit nominations from the public for the characters who will appear on the new note, which is set to be released after the £20.
The current £50 note features James Watt and Matthew Boulton. It was issued on the 2nd of November 2011.
As the speculations start to mount regarding whose face will adorn the new note, Wes Streeting has, a Labour MP, has suggested that Mary Seacole, the pioneering British-Jamaican nurse, to become the first ever black person to be featured on a British currency.
In an interview with the Telegraph, he stated: “Mary Seacole’s achievements are too often overlooked in history and yet what she did for soldiers in the Crimean War was an act of great heroism which led to her being voted the greatest black Briton.”
After moving to the United Kingdom from Kingston, Seacole volunteered her services to help the British soldiers in the Crimean War, however, her application was turned down.
Despite the setback, the mixed-race nurse made her own way to the battlefield and assisted to the wounded soldiers.
After she faded into obscurity for many years, Seacole has since become highly regarded for what she achieved amidst experiencing racial prejudice.
Sarah John, the chief cashier of the Bank of England, stated: “I’m very excited to be starting the process of introducing a new £50 note.”
She added: “At the Bank, we are committed to providing the public with high quality notes they can use with confidence.”
She continued: “Moving the £50 note onto polymer is an important next step to ensure that we can continue to do that.”
Polymer notes are considered to be harder to counterfeit. the bank said that it also lasts around 2.5 times longer as compared to paper notes.