CHECK your old purses, coat pockets and down the back of your sofa as you might have one of millions of old paper notes that can be swapped for cold hard cash.
There are a whopping 222million paper notes out there that can no longer be used, according to figures obtained by consumer group MoneySavingExpert.com.
Mirrorpix MoneySavingExpert reveals there are 222million paper notes out there that can no longer be used
Paper £10 notes were withdrawn as a legal tender last March and paper £5 notes were scrapped in May 2017.
They were both replaced with plastic “polymer” versions.
But while these paper notes are no longer legal tender, meaning they can’t be used as a method of payment, you can exchange them for cash.
A new polymer £20 note featuring JM Turner will be issued in 2020 replacing the current paper notes. But for now, paper £20 notes can still be used.
Which banks let you deposit notes at the Post Office?HERE’s which banks allow customers to deposit old paper notes into their accounts at the Post Office:
Allied Irish Bank (GB)
Bank of Ireland
Bank of Scotland
First Trust Bank
Royal Bank of Scotland
Steve Nowottny, news and features editor at MoneySavingExpert.com, explained: “Given paper tenners were taken out of circulation a year ago, and paper fivers almost two years ago, some might assume all the old notes have now been handed in.
“But these new figures show that’s far from the case – in fact, a massive amount of cash is still out there.
“So make sure you check behind the sofa, empty old coat pockets and go through old wallets to see if any of it’s yours.”
How to exchange paper notes
You can send old notes by post to the Bank of England and it will either send you replacement new notes, a cheque or input the cash directly into your bank account.
You will need proof of address and a separate photo ID to do this and be aware that the Bank won’t take responsibility for any cash that’s lost in the post.
To go in person, again you may need proof of address and a separate photo ID, and be aware that you can queue for up to an hour.
The Bank of England can be found at Threadneedle Street, London, EC2R 8AH. It is open Monday to Friday (except bank holidays) from 9am to 4pm.
If you don’t want to go all the way to London or you’re uneasy sending cash in the post, you can deposit old paper notes directly into your bank account via the Post Office.
You can do this at any of the Post Office’s 11,500 branches as long as you’re a customer of one of 27 banks – see the box above for the full list – although you can’t exchange paper notes for polymer notes at the Post Office.
Banks don’t have to accept or exchange paper notes but many will.
Customers of Lloyds Banking Group, which covers Bank of Scotland, Halifax, and Lloyds, can deposit old notes worth more than £20. Cash of less than £20 will be exchanged for polymer notes.
Nationwide told The Sun that customers can deposit (not exchange) notes at its branches, while HSBC and RBS Banking Group, which covers NatWest, Royal Bank of Scotland and Ulster Bank, say customers can swap or deposit old notes.
The Sun has asked Santander and TSB for their policies and we’ll update this story as soon as we get a response.
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