A few weeks ago I came across a brief mention online that the Royal Bank of Scotland was to issue as batch of pound notes this September and that these would be the final pound notes issued by any UK bank.
As I regularly sell Scottish banknotes for more than face value, I realised the notes of this final issue would immediately attain iconic status and attract a premium value among collectors and investors.
However, a chance conversation I had this week put this in a different light. Unexpectedly, I had the chance to chat briefly to a member of the Bank’s “Scottish Note Team”. Normally based at the Bank’s Gogarburn headquarters near Edinburgh, he was in the Highlands for a few days this month and I took the chance to bring up the “final issue” of pound notes I had heard about.
He was surprised by this but was able to reassure me that RBS has no plans to stop issuing pound notes. Additional notes will be issued whenever there is a demand for these. Apparently all customers need to do is ask at their branch for pound notes and they will be provided on request. Branches have a stock if these and the Bank will print more when they are needed.
Yes a batch of new pound notes will be distributed in September but there has been no decision that these should be the last but I’m going to play it safe and request a couple of hundred just in case because there is no way of knowing when the final batch will appear.
Of course I also took the chance to ask what is next in the pipeline for RBS notes but sadly all I learned was that the new polymer (plastic) five pound notes will appear later this year, in line with other Scottish banks and also the Bank of England and that this will be followed next year by the new plastic tenners.
So, no dramatic revelations but I was pleased to get a clear picture of future changes straight from the horse’s mouth.