Banks and other services that will still exchange old £1 coins as well as £10 and £20 notes - full list
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Paper bank notes are no longer legal tender, as well as old-style £1 coins - but don’t worry, as you can still exchange them. The Bank of England often takes notes and coins out of circulation in order to replace them with newer forms of the currency.
The most recent changes saw the end of paper £20 and £50 notes as legal tender on September 30 last year. They were replaced by polymer banknotes in 2020 and 2021 like other English notes, leading the Bank of England to bring their paper versions to an end.
Notes featuring the new King are expected to enter circulation by mid-2024. Current banknotes featuring the portrait of Queen Elizabeth II will continue to be legal tender at that point, co-circulating with those featuring King Charles III, and will only be removed from circulation once they become worn or damaged.
But paper bank notes and the old-style £1 coins are not legal tender and cannot be spent any more. The good news is there are a number of ways you can swap old notes for new ones or deposit them into your account - here’s how.
Post Office branches - but not all of them
The Post Office exchanges old bank notes for new ones, which is just one of the many banking services it offers. You can exchange paper banknotes at no cost in its participating sites - up to a maximum of £300 in any two-year period.
The bank notes the Post Office currently accepts are the £5 note which ceased to be legal tender on May 5, 2017, the £10 note which expired on March 1, 2018 as well as the £20 and £50 note which ceased to be legal tender on September 30, 2022.
To find a participating branch, visit the store locator on the Post Office website. You must bring photo ID with you.
According to the Bank of England, the Post Office might be also able to accept withdrawn bank notes and deposit them straight into a bank account that you can access with them.
At the Bank of England
The Bank of England counter at Threadneedle Street in London EC2R 8AH is usually open from 9.30am to 3pm Monday to Friday. You can exchange notes there, but if it’s a bit of trek for you, you can always exchange withdrawn notes with the Bank of England by post.
The bank suggests sending your banknotes via the post due to high demand in person at the moment, unless you require the bank notes immediately. People are advised to put measures in place to reduce the chance of loss or theft as the bank notes are sent at your own risk.
In order to swap notes by post, you need to fill out a form and send it with your notes, a photocopy of your ID and proof of address. For more information visit the Bank of England website.
Your bank branch
Banks no longer have to legally accept old paper notes and coins once they have been withdrawn from circulation. But some continue to do so to allow customers to deposit them into their accounts.
Barclays, Halifax, Lloyds, Nationwide, NatWest and Santander allow customers to deposit old coins and notes into your account, according toMoneySavingExpert. But PayPoint, which allows Monzo users to deposit cash into their accounts, told the site that customers will have to go to the Bank of England to swap old notes - so it’s worth checking with your bank.