How the new £10 note measures up

Just over one billion polymer £10 notes featuring Pride And Prejudice author Jane Austen have been printed ready for issue. Here are some facts and figures about the new tenner:

:: There are 3.7 billion Bank of England banknotes in circulation, of which around 801 million are tenners.

:: The new £10 note is the first Bank of England banknote with a tactile feature to help blind and partially sighted users - a series of raised dots in the top left-hand corner.

:: According to the Bank, the first tenner was issued in 1759, printed only on one side and in black and white.

:: Florence Nightingale was the first character to be portrayed on the back of a £10 Bank of England note, in 1975.

:: Security features on the new banknote include a see-through window featuring the Queen's portrait, a quill which changes from purple to orange and a hologram of the coronation crown which appears 3D and multi-coloured when the note is tilted.

:: Winchester Cathedral, where Austen is buried, also features on the new note. It is shown in gold foil on the front and silver on the back.

:: The new note features a portrait of Jane Austen. An engraving was commissioned by her family and based on an original sketch of Austen drawn by her sister, Cassandra Austen. The choice of the portrait has drawn controversy, with some claiming it gives Austen a "makeover" compared with her sister's original sketch.

:: The selection of Austen removed the possibility of a long-term absence of women on Bank of England notes, apart from the Queen, after it was announced that Sir Winston Churchill would replace social reformer Elizabeth Fry on the £5 note. The prospect of a lack of female faces on banknotes caused an outcry.

:: The new Austen note joins the £5 note featuring Sir Winston as the Bank of England's first "family" of banknotes to be made from polymer.

:: Polymer banknotes last around two-and-a-half times longer than paper ones and are also said to be able to survive a spin in the washing machine.

:: You may also spot Austen on coins - she features on a new £2 coin issued by the Royal Mint.

:: Researchers Consumer Intelligence found more than half (51%) of people say they prefer polymer notes to the old paper money, with many people believing it is more modern and robust.

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