UK's Winston Churchill To Appear On New £5 Notes

UK's Winston Churchill To Appear On New £5 Notes

Former British prime minister Sir Winston Churchill is to appear on the next banknotes, it has been announced. Bank of England Governor Sir Mervyn King revealed the image of Churchill which will be used, to members of his family at his former home, Chartwell, on Friday.

UK's Winston Churchill To Appear On New £5 Notes

Sir Mervyn said: "Our banknotes acknowledge the life and work of great Britons. Sir Winston Churchill was a truly great British leader, orator and writer.

"Above that, he remains a hero of the entire free world. His energy, courage, eloquence, wit and public service are an inspiration to us all. I am proud to announce that he will appear on our next banknote."

The Churchill banknote is due to be issued as a £5 note for use during 2016.

The design on the reverse of the note will include a portrait of Churchill from a photograph taken in Ottawa by Yousuf Karsh on December 30, 1941 and a view of Westminster and the Elizabeth Tower from the South Bank looking across Westminster Bridge.

The image of the Elizabeth Tower will feature the hands of the Great Clock at 3pm - the approximate time on May 13, 1940 when Churchill declared in a speech to the House of Commons: "I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears and sweat." This declaration is quoted beneath the portrait.

In the background, there will be the Nobel Prize medal which Churchill was awarded in 1953 for literature, together with the wording of the prize citation.

UK's Winston Churchill To Appear On New £5 Notes

Sir Mervyn, suggested the new note could become known as a "Winston", adding, "We do not face the challenges faced by Churchill's generation. But we have our own.

"And the spirit of those words remains as relevant today as it was to my parents' generation who fought for the survival of our country and freedom under Churchill's leadership."

Churchill's image replaces that of Elizabeth Fry, the philanthropist and penal reformer, who appears on current notes first issued in 2002.

These will be phased out over two or three years, leaving no notes featuring the face of a famous woman - other than the Queen.

The choice of Churchill reflects the fact that, though a political figure, he is widely revered across the spectrum as the man who saved Britain in its darkest hour from the fearful advance of Nazism across Europe.

Speaking in the grounds of Chartwell, Sir Winston's grandson, Mid Sussex Tory MP Nicholas Soames, said featuring on a bank note would have given the former wartime prime minister great pleasure.

He said: "He was an extraordinary man and his ability to capture the mood and the people's mood was one of his great gifts as a statesman.

"The design of the bank note, the quotation and the whole idea behind it is so appropriate and fitting, and my grandfather would have been truly very proud."

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