Pam West British Notes

Back to News & Info

Articles Home Page
Prefix Info
Pams Blog 2021/2
Pams Blog 2020
Old Blogs 2017
Old Blogs 2016
Old Blogs 2015
pams old blogs 2017

December 2017

I was sitting in the office whilst Peter was somewhere else and luckily so! The lightbulb in his office lamp exploded, sending bulbous bits of glass all over his desk and onto the floor. However, I do want you to know that no banknotes were hurt in this debacle.

The following day, I switched on the lights in the office and Peter's ceiling light blew (died).  I quickly switched off and waited for Peter to replace the bulb - he had already replaced the one in the lamp.  In the old days it was years before bulbs blew and I don't even remember any exploding.  We used to have great light bulbs that lasted. Now we have the rules implemented about what we can and cannot have, which is one rule I will not miss when we can choose what sort of light bulbs we want in the UK.

We had Christmas day off, but, were drawn to the office on Boxing day.  Having had new windows fitted, it gave us the opportunity to sort paper work out and new stock, which seems to be a never ending job!

I do believe we have come to the end of the year having attended our last show in two places!  A first for us.  We had Glen, our son, stand in for us at the Birmingham coin show, battling through the snow from Derby as we had committed to attend the new MIF Maastricht coin show.

Prior to that weekend of events Pete and I spoke on Bernhard Forgeries at the Bank Note Society of Scotland.  Our first day in Edinburgh was very cold, but, in fact, it warmed up over the weekend.  We had a lovely evening meal with some of the club members and on the Sunday not only managed to visit the Cameo Cinema (our other hobby) to see 'Battle of the Sexes', which is an excellent film, but, managed a Sunday roast at the Caledonian Waldorf Brasserie - the souffle was to die for!

We will be attending the following fairs 2018:

I will be visiting the New York International show, Grand Hyatt Hotel, Park Avenue at Grand Central, New York. Jan 12-14.

January Friday 19/ Saturday 20 York Racecourse Coin Fair

February Saturday 3 London Coin Fair  Holiday Inn  Coram Street Bloomsbury  London

If there is anything you are specifically seeking, let me know – we have a lot of new stock!


Just check the front page of our site for shows we will be attending.


Wishing everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy Collecting New Year.  Pam, Pete and Glen West

November 2017

We often miss things that are quite interesting because we are either not looking or interested in seeing where we are actually going rather than what is around us.  Whilst in London for the recent coin fair, I passed an old building with the name:The Horse Hospital.  As a two storey building I presume there was a lift of some sort and believe it really was a hospital for horses, although I don't think it is currently in disuse. 

We usually have a 'wrap' for lunch, but, was flabbergasted to find that my huge wrap had shrunk by more than an inch in diameter.  I am sure it is me that has to decide if I want to eat less

Recently popped into a large supermarket and remembered that some time ago there was a campaign to take sweets away from the checkout.  This did seem to have happened, but, I noticed that by every self service checkout there was a small tray with sweets on it for sale - the type you might grab for a quick sugar boost - so we are back where we started!

I received a genuine two page letter from a credit reference agency (which I have never personally used, but, other companies I use have), advising me that some of my personal data has been accessed.  They suggest I take immediate action. One of the free services they offer is to provide an identity protection service for 12 months. Excuse me, but, isn't that ironic in that the company that was hacked is offering me an identity service, which I am sure will not be free after 12 months. Let alone, they might be hacked again - maybe a better security system is required! 

October 2017

I am constantly aware of the shrinkage in our world - our new polymer Bank of England notes have shrunk by 15%.  When shopping I notice that jar sizes are shrinking, but, not so sure of a lower price, however, was a bit surprised the other day when buying my favourite Skecher shoes that I no longer needed a 4, but, a 3 and a half - unfortunately I seem to be shrinking in the wrong place!

We often go to the Cinema (gets us out of the house) and wanted to see the new Bladerunner 49 film, but, decided to see the original Bladerunner first on DVD (not video).  After a slow 2 hours, when the film ended, I recalled that I had seen a few of the scenes elsewhere - (James Bond and Star Wars) only thing is I don't know which came first!

September 2017

When we travel to London on the underground we sometimes see mice, so, an ode to mice:

The mouse was brown, but, now he's black

With soot and grime upon his back

He looks up to see the sky, paws aloof

Is greeted by the tunnel roof

He searches for food all around

Dropped from commuter to the ground

He scurries quickly through spaces so small

You wonder 'was he really there at all?'


August 2017

This might be the quietest Bank Holiday ever.  We sat in the garden, no building work going on, most neighbours away (they are all good neighbours), just the sound of robins, magpies and parakeets. 

I am off to a Spa for a couple of days - leaving Peter in charge.  I often go to a Beauty salon to see what they can do, but, it seems nothing can be done for me!

While I think about it - if you want a free admission ticket to the London Coin Fair, which is only next week (so close to my birthday), let me know and we will leave a ticket for you at the Reception desk of the show.

Thank you for your all comments/responses to my last newsletter.  I hope I don't seem like a Moaning Minnie, no offense to our American friends (Minnie mouse). I just think there are some things that 'get on your nerves' a bit like Joe Pasquale's theme song (a great comedian).  However, things are quite calm and our travels (or travails) have slowed down for now.


July 2017

Attended the unveiling of the new Jane Austen polymer £10 at Winchester Cathedral with my husband, Peter and IBNS London members: Mike Brill, meeting up with Claire Lobel and Chris Neild and his auntie.  It was a lovely sunny day with many Austen fans and traditionally dressed young people.  We even had the opportunity of holding a banknote after the unveiling.  I was interviewed (along with others) on my views of the new £10 and later found out it was actually aired on local Winchester TV.

On our car journey to the York show I was preparing our Tom Tom (sat nav) and I saw the woman next to me using her phone (in her 4x4), so, I pretended to take a photo with my sat nav.  She tried to catch us up (slowing down/speeding up) as we were on the outside lane, but, eventually gave up.  I hope I frightened her into not using a mobile whilst driving on the A3.  Oh, by the way, of course I was the passenger!

Prior to the London IBNS meeting (July) a group of members went for an evening meal at Pizza Express - the staff there have gotten to know us and always ensure we get the best deal with any Tastecard holders - so, Thank you, Pizza Express.  All are welcome to join us at 5pm.

Pete and I went to High Down Prison, category A, the other day with Richard and Claire Lobel.  Not for some dastardly deed, but, rather to the finest restaurant in Surrey.  The Clink restaurant trains staff in all aspects of fine dining which helps reduce re-offending.  A most worthy cause and a fabulous meal.  I can highly recommend it.



The new Bank of England £10 note unveiled 18th July 2017

Today, on the 200th anniversary of Jane Austen’s death, Governor Mark Carney unveiled the design of the new £10 note featuring the world-renowned author. The note is printed on polymer and is the first Bank of England banknote with a tactile feature to help blind and partially sighted users.

As it is made of polymer, the new £10 note is cleaner, safer and stronger. It joins the Churchill £5 in the first family of polymer Bank of England banknotes and a new £20 note featuring J.M.W Turner will follow in 2020. The £10 note contains sophisticated security features which make it very difficult to counterfeit. It is expected to last at least 2.5 times longer than the current paper £10 notes – around 5 years in total – and stay in better condition during day to day use.

The new tactile feature on this note is a series of raised dots in the top left-hand corner and has been developed in conjunction with the RNIB. This is in addition to the elements already incorporated in Bank of England banknotes for vision impaired people; the tiered sizing, bold numerals, raised print and differing colour palettes.

The new £10 note will be issued on 14 September 2017 and the public will begin to see them in the following days and weeks as the notes leave cash centres around the country and enter general circulation. The public can continue to spend paper £10 notes as usual and these will be gradually withdrawn as they are banked by retailers and the public.

Legal tender status of the paper £10 featuring Charles Darwin will be withdrawn in Spring 2018 with the exact date being announced at least three months in advance.

Speaking at Winchester Cathedral, the resting place of Jane Austen, the Governor said: “Our banknotes serve as repositories of the country’s collective memory, promoting awareness of the United Kingdom’s glorious history and highlighting the contributions of its greatest citizens. The new £10 note celebrates Jane Austen’s work. Austen’s novels have a universal appeal and speak as powerfully today as they did when they were first published. The new £10 will be printed on polymer, making it safer, stronger and cleaner. The note will also include a new tactile feature on the £10 to help the visually impaired, ensuring the nation’s money is as inclusive as possible.”

The new Bank of Scotland £10 polymer note
Bank of Scotland has unveiled the design of its new £10 polymer note, which is due to enter circulation in the autumn.
The front of the note will continue to feature Scottish novelist and poet Sir Walter Scott alongside The Mound in Edinburgh. The Glenfinnan Viaduct will remain on the reverse of the design. However, it will now feature a steam locomotive hauling a heritage tourist train.

The locomotive is a Stanier "Black 5", which was designed for London, Midland and Scottish Railway and often seen on the West Highland line.
Image copyright Bank of Scotland Image caption The reverse side of the new design features a steam locomotive hauling a heritage tourist train
The new note, which was designed by banknote manufacturer De La Rue, is slightly smaller than the existing paper version in circulation.
It includes security features incorporated in the bank's new polymer £5 note, which entered circulation in October. They include an anti-counterfeit "window effect", built into the windows of the image of The Mound, and metallic ink which changes colour as the note is moved.

There is also a new "tactile emboss", created by a series of raised dots, which is designed to aid the visually impaired.


Ulster Bank is to introduce plastic £5 and £10 notes in Northern Ireland.
The notes, which will replace designs that have been in circulation for 40 years, will be released in 2019.
The bank said they will include "advanced security features" and their designs will be unveiled in the coming months.
All four Northern Ireland banks print their own money, a tradition stretching back to the early 19th Century.
Ulster Bank's senior brand manager Lita Notte said it is "an important part of our business heritage and the economy of Northern Ireland".

'Cost effective'
The new banknotes feature designs on the theme "living in nature", influenced by a panel of historians, botanists, artists, architects and members of the public.
"The notes are in the final stages of their design phase," Ms Notte said.
"They are a unique demonstration of what matters to those who live and work here in Northern Ireland."
Earlier this year, Ulster Bank said that plastic notes will "probably be more cost-effective" than paper currency.
They are said by the Bank of England to be cleaner, safer and stronger than paper notes.

Help to adapt

Last year, the Bank of England released its first polymer note but, the first plastic £5 had been introduced 17 years previously in Northern Ireland by the Northern Bank.
Ulster Bank said it will engage with retailers to help them adapt to the new polymer notes.
There is about £2.5bn worth of Northern Ireland banknotes in circulation and Ulster Bank has been producing notes for 181 years.
Existing Ulster Bank £5 and £10 notes will remain in circulation until 2019, when they will be removed.

July 2017
My leaf cutting bees returned, but, I think they may have other homes as they did not stay long and the leaves in our garden have not been affected. My bird box bees are still safely esconced, though, we see fewer of them.

I have just returned from a short break in the Loire valley and had a lovely time, wandering around Chateaux and gardens. The French have found a unique way in which to introduce people to collecting banknotes. On the way out of two of the Chateaux there was a machine that dished out a commemorative banknote for E2 with a value of 0 euro, however, you receive a well produced banknote, commemorating the Chateau. It makes a change from the elongated coin (which has its own collector's club). Of course, I could not help buying a banknote!

At the last London IBNS meeting when we were all settling our restaurant bill I checked a £50 note's prefix (part payment for two meals from Forest Schumaker and his wife, Barbara all the way from Milwaukee) and was asked if I always check prefixes, and, of course, I do. So, imagine my surprise when home, taking my banknotes out of my bag I found a £5 polymer solid 8's! I had received it from a Taxi driver, but, in my haste to leave the taxi never checked it. It is a first for me to ever have received a solid serial banknote in change!

June 2017
You might think I moan a lot, but, I do think some things are worth moaning about.
Just when we were inundated with orders (for our new book - English Paper Money 9th edition) our office printer decided to go to printer heaven. So, on a lovely bank holiday Monday morning we traipsed off to PC World arriving at opening time. A very helpful young lady assisted with our purchase. I opened a business account. She offered to email me the invoice - great idea - 'I'll print it up on my new printer', then, proceeded to print a copy of the invoice in case I needed it for anyone - me? My gmail account showed a copy of the invoice. So I was a bit surprised when, exactly 5 days later, a printed copy of the invoice arrived. So, thank you PC world for wasting two bits of paper on me, wasting the postman's time and not working towards a paperless office. Oh yes, then internet went down soon after - I am really sure it had nothing to do with the new Printer! Doh!

And another thing.......... I had a wonderful couple of days at a I was leaving I was offered a special half price deal (I am a sucker for a good deal). I promptly paid up and when time permitted decided when I wanted to return and requested the dates. I was stunned to find I could return but pay a £50 supplement for being a single person - I was a single person when I went in. After lovely conversations with a few people I finally spoke with the Manager. She asked me if I had read the letter when I had arrived - what letter? I pointed out that noone mentioned it was half price, but, had a £50 levy, otherwise I would not have taken up the offer. And yes, I did get my new booking without having to pay the £50. It all might seem trivial, but, an offer is an offer.
It is the principle that matters.

On the same subject. I was offered a credit card by email from a reputable company. I use their hotels, so I applied. I was not surprised to find I had been accepted. Whilst we were in China my credit card arrived, followed a few days later by the pin number. Before I even activated the card a bill arrived stating £99 for annual use of the card. Well, I think you know what happened next! If the email started off....Just £99 annual fee for our card giving you one night free in a hotel (once you have stayed at least 10 times) I would not have started to fill the form in.

Not had a lot of time to sit in the garden (having been to China for 19 days) and watch out for our solitary leaf cutting bees, but, I don't need to - the bird box has been taken over by a swarm - so, sometimes when I am weeding and dead heading the bumble bees are meandering along happily and other times worker bees are buzzing around - I keep away from the bird box!

And yes, we did walk some of the Great Wall, saw the Terracotta warriors, floated along the Li river, walked down gorges (puffed back up), saw the stone forest in Kunming and so many other wonderful sights and sites.

April 2017
Common sense prevailed. The Company refunded me all my money (Wow). The small print said I had 14 days in which to make a full refund claim. But, I had tried for four weeks to contact the salon offering the service. Therefore, the small print became irrelevant and they saw sense. Mind you, not before they sent two emails, tried phoning and came against the same brick wall that I had!

We have been busy working on English Paper Money 9th edition and expect it to arrive with us 26th May. We shall be posting the following week. We have kept the price at £20 + £4 post in the UK. You can pre-order via the website. No money will be taken from your card until such time as the book is posted. Or you can just email me your requirements.

Managed to book tickets to see the play 'Carousel', which will only be on for five weeks. I have never seen the film and was unaware that the most famous 'football anthem' (you'll never walk alone) stems from this show.  Peter has been busy loading new Scottish error banknotes onto the website.

March 2017
We could be like London buses - as the saying goes - none for a while, then, three arrive at once. I have been remiss in preparing the lists of new stock - as you know always stating we are busy. Again, as they say ' if you want something done, ask a busy person'!




Copyright 2024 Pam West British NotesOur use of cookies