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The £50 note that's worth £820

Simon Ward
by Lovemoney Staff Simon Ward on 28 September 2012  |  Comments 18 comments

Collectors were quick to snap up a series of UK banknotes with low serial numbers at a charity auction.

The £50 note that's worth £820

A £50 note that sold for £820 was among the highlights of a Bank of England banknote auction that raised more than £50,000 for charity.

The reason for the high price tag for a seemingly ordinary banknote? It had the serial number AA01 000888. Early serial numbers are highly prized among notaphilists (paper money collectors). And the number eight is considered lucky in much of Asia, which is where many collectors live.

The £50 note was one of the recent 2011 designs featuring entrepreneur Matthew Boulton and engineer James Watt. It was also the first to feature the signature of new Bank of England Chief Cashier Chris Salmon.

Another £50 note with the serial number AA01 000013 sold for £700, while AA01 000018 went for £660.

An uncut sheet of £50 notes (Spink Auctioneers)Two uncut sheets of 35 £50 notes (pictured right) sold for £5,500 and £3,900 respectively. The value of the notes on the sheets was £1,750.

The Bank of England deliberately holds back other notes with low serial numbers for sales such as this one.

The first issues of all banknotes ending with 01 are presented to the Queen, with 02 going to the Duke of Edinburgh and 03 to the Prime Minister.

The proceeds from the auction will be split between UK charities the British Association for Adoption & Fostering and the Kids Company.

Photos courtesy of Spink Auctioneers

More on coins and notes

How to spot a fake banknote

How to spot a fake £1 coin

The 20p coin worth £500 (or more)!

Bristol launches its own local currency

Why fivers are so dirty

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Comments (18)

  • psicophil
    Love rating 9
    psicophil said

    Interesting article but when I went to school a sheet of thirty six, fifty pound notes would be worth £1800 unless maybe you get a discount for bulk!! 0/10 for arithmatic and no gold star this week.

    Report on 29 September 2012  |  Love thisLove  1 love
  • allbutnowt
    Love rating 1
    allbutnowt said

    Very interesting, but the illustration of the sheet is wrong! Either that or the five times table has been amended: ....... six 5's are 30, seven 5's are 36, eight 5's are 40 ......! -1/10.

    Report on 29 September 2012  |  Love thisLove  1 love
  • jonnie2thumbs
    Love rating 111
    jonnie2thumbs said

    seven 5's are 36 ???

    someone call the maths police.........

    7 rows of 5 £50 notes is 35 notes witch is £1,750

    Report on 29 September 2012  |  Love thisLove  1 love
  • Mike10613
    Love rating 632
    Mike10613 said

    I wonder who gets all the ones with RU18 on? Are they adults only?

    I've read this stuff somewhere before, they couldn't spell Matthew Boulton either. Maybe you need to come from a region with a history of working for a living?

    Report on 29 September 2012  |  Love thisLove  1 love
  • pastsellby
    Love rating 6
    pastsellby said


    and somebody call the spelling police.........

    ".........35 notes witch is £1,750 " ???

    which is the wrong witch!

    Report on 29 September 2012  |  Love thisLove  1 love
  • CuNNaXXa
    Love rating 415
    CuNNaXXa said

    Please guys...

    Remember that an accountant can make 7 times 5 anything they want, so while we know 7 times 5 is 35, an accountant can make it 36, 37, 38, 942 or 11,837,648.

    Also, isn't this how Parliament works, by telling us they need MORE taxation, even when they should be reaping (or raping) in enough already?

    Report on 29 September 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • alexms
    Love rating 8
    alexms said

    what might be more useful would be a 100 note, the euros have up to 450GBP approx, the Swiss goes up to I think 1000CHF, even the US makes it to a bit over 60 quid, and they were talking about a $200 bill. A wicked friend sasys it was 'delayed' because nobody wanted it to have George II's head on it, whch would have been the case had he been president at the time of introduction...

    Report on 30 September 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • fairmaid
    Love rating 4
    fairmaid said

    RBS, Bank of Scotland and Clydesdale already issue £100 notes.

    Report on 01 October 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • Simon Ward
    Love rating 9
    Simon Ward said

    As some of you have rightly pointed out, I got my numbers muddled up in the article. The sheets sold contained 35 of the uncut £50 notes, which are worth £1,750.



    Report on 01 October 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • electricblue
    Love rating 785
    electricblue said

    No wonder Queen Liz never carries any money, would be a costly mistake parting with one from her 'collection' !

    Report on 01 October 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • hopefultom
    Love rating 50
    hopefultom said


    When you went to school, did they not cover spelling? It should read arithmetic.

    You, also get 0/10, no star, and you can stand in the corner with jonnie2thumbs

    Report on 03 October 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • CuNNaXXa
    Love rating 415
    CuNNaXXa said

    Surely you mean Irathmitec?

    Report on 07 October 2012  |  Love thisLove  1 love
  • Aitken B
    Love rating 154
    Aitken B said

    I hav injoyed the skolarly diskushon on mafs and speling but I thought the spectacle of bankers selling money for much more than it was worth just about summed up our present problems.

    Report on 07 October 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • CuNNaXXa
    Love rating 415
    CuNNaXXa said

    Ahh, but isn't that what bankers are good at. After all, they lend money which belongs to some of us, to others of us, charging a hefty APR bordering double figures, then after they pocket their profit, pay the original lenders an APR of less than 1%.

    Don't you just begrudge being forced to pay almost 10% APR on a personal loan, when your savings are attracting just 0.2%?

    Bankers are good at what they do, which is to make money out of managing it.

    What is Greed? It is when someone who doesn't have a natural right to make a profit wants to make a profit. Ask your boss for more money and he will call you 'greedy', yet your boss will probably reward his own hard work.

    The rich get richer while the poor get poorer, and some of those who are marginally rich will suddenly discover that they are no longer rich, but gradually sinking into the mire known as the poverty class.

    Do we still have a working class anymore? Is there a political party that supports this class? The answer to both is NO.

    The world is changing. In fifty years time, we will all be connected to a mainframe computer that will dictate what we do, and when we do it.

    Maybe we are the start to a Borg society, as demonstrated by the fictional Star Trek Next Generation series.

    Report on 07 October 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • Aitken B
    Love rating 154
    Aitken B said

    I think we are more or less there with the Borg society. Everything we do is scrutinised by the Elf n' Safety brigade and everything we say is scrutinised by the PC brigade. Are we now not all automatons trained into observing a narrow set of Orwellian thought and action parameters?

    I'm not sure the bankers are very good at managing money; our present situation would suggest they are not. What they are good at is being at the head of the queue when the bailouts arrive and of being able to exert sufficient blackmail to get their grubby paws on them.

    Regardless of the sate of our economy there are three sections of the population who continue to rake it in. Bankers, Lawyers and, of course, MPs.

    Report on 07 October 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • CuNNaXXa
    Love rating 415
    CuNNaXXa said

    I think the bankers are excellent at making money disappear. We all know that this missing money is somewhere, and totally unaccounted for. Who else but a banking genius could syphon billions away, without a trace.

    Not even Paul Daniels is THAT good.

    Report on 07 October 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • ash007
    Love rating 9
    ash007 said

    wow... all these angry comments about bankers on an article about selling something for more than face value with the proceeds going to CHARITY...

    I mean, really. Something selling for more than it is originally sold for? Think cars, stamps, art, etc etc. Everything can go up in value as well as down - what this has to do with the 10,000 people in the country earning more than you and I, I have no idea. Stop blaming society, government, bankers, anyone for your problems and get on with your own life. "Its not my fault" culture annoys the hell out of me in this country.

    Blame the rich? Why? - 1% of the population pay 27% of taxes in this country. Do the lowest 50% earners just want communism? funny that...

    Report on 08 October 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • teafoo
    Love rating 55
    teafoo said

    I have only just noticed this thread .. but I'd like to say:

    Good comments ash007.

    Too much interference instead of getting on with Life goes on nowadays .. is it simply envy? Looks a bit like it.

    We can't all spot opportunities as they arise - or even before they materialise which is perhaps even more important.

    And it's fashionable to bemoan one's lot, grumble and blame someone else.

    Report on 29 December 2012  |  Love thisLove  0 loves

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