I only found out today that the Bank of England paper £5 note becomes valueless at midnight, May 5th. Yes, May 5th. If you’re reading this in the morning, that’s today. Only the new plastic ones will be valid from midnight.
If you’re reading this on Saturday and you have a jar full of paper fivers, then you have a jar of kindling. They have no value at all. Banks are not obliged to change them either. You can use them as toilet paper or Monopoly money, they have no other use.
It wasn’t too well publicised, I think. There’s a good chance of a lot of people being stuck with worthless money… just before an election. Someone wasn’t thinking ahead here, were they?
The Scottish paper notes are to be phased out – as the banks get them, they’ll be burned and new plastic ones issued. The Bank of England will simply declare the English note ‘not money’ from midnight.
Don’t accept paper bank of England £5 notes in change . Alternatively, suddenly think of something else you need to buy and hand them back to the assistant who gave them to you. They then can’t declare them invalid without admitting they knew they were defrauding you with stuff that isn’t money.
There’s also a new £1 coin. The old ones still work until October, and the new ones are already appearing on eBay as if they were worth something. I’ve seen a lot of listings claiming the new £1 dated 2016 is rare. It was first issued in 2017.
I’ve only seen four of the new coins so far. All of them were dated 2016. I don’t think that constitutes ‘rare’ even if it is a very small sample size.
Better to keep back a few of the old £1 coins. Those will become rare in the future and if you get one in excellent condition, you might interest a coin collector. If you have one of the uncommon ones you’ll interest them now.
The main thing to watch out for at the moment is the Bank of England paper fiver. As of midnight, May 5th, it’s completely worthless.
May 6th could see a lot of people getting really quite angry…