Warning issued to Britons who use cash in ASDA, Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Morrisons and Lidl

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Bank of England outline the security features of the £20 banknote

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Undertaking the weekly or monthly food shop will be a regular occurrence for millions of families. However, covering the cost when a person reaches the checkout is perhaps the most important aspect of all.

In this sense, Britons who use cash to make their payment should note a vital update.

The change to bear in mind relates to the validity of £20 and £50 notes, and failing to take heed could mean a person’s transaction is rejected outright.

From September onwards, paper £20 and £50 notes will no longer be considered as legal tender.

Over the last few months and years they have been replaced with polymer alternatives – a type of plastic – in a new design.

It means Britons have just under six months left to spend their paper £20 and £50 notes, or deposit these.

Shoppers with brands such as ASDA, Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Lidl, M&S and Morrisons are now being urged to pay attention to this important reminder.

After the September deadline, individuals will be able to exchange their old style notes.

This means they do not have to panic about losing sums of money as a result of the change.

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The new polymer £20 was first issued on February 20, 2020, and the new £50 on June 23, 2021.

It is thought there are some £7billion worth of paper £20 notes, and £10.5billion worth of paper £50 notes still in circulation.

The key deadline for shoppers and others to bear in mind is September 30, 2022.

After this point, the new polymer notes will be the only ones with legal tender status.

Paper notes can be deposited into UK bank accounts, and some Post Offices may still accept them.

All withdrawn notes will continue to be exchanged by the Bank of England.

The chief cashier for the central bank, Sarah John, said: “We want to remind the public that they only have six months left to spend or deposit their paper £20 and £50 notes. 

“Over the past few years we have been changing our banknotes from paper to polymer, because these designs are more difficult to counterfeit, whilst also being more durable.

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“A large number of these paper notes have now been returned to us, and replaced with the polymer £20 featuring the artist J.M.W. Turner, and the polymer £50 featuring the scientist Alan Turing. 

“However if members of the public still have any of these paper notes in their possession, they should deposit or spend them whilst they can.”

The switch to polymer notes has been undertaken for a number of reasons.

The first is that the notes are resistant to dirt and moisture, and thus remain in better condition for longer.

The newer notes also have more detailed security features, making it more difficult for them to be counterfeited.

Finally, polymer notes also have tactile features, allowing blind and partially sighted people to use them.

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