Bank of England Wants a Scientist’s Image on New 50-Pound Notes

New polymer £50 note to celebrate British achievement in science

Prof Hodgkin won the coveted prize for advancing the technique of X-ray crystallography, which is used to determine molecules' 3D structures.

Bank of England Governor Mark Carney speaks during the Bank of England's financial stability report at the Bank of England in central London on November 28, 2017.

Other suggestion included Anne McLaren, a leader in test tube fertilisation.

The scientist will feature on the other side of the note to the Queen, who can be the only living person on bank notes. If you too would like to celebrate the UK's contribution to science, you have until the 14 December 2018 to make your own nomination.

Who are the faces of current British notes?

Noor Khan would have been the only ethnic minority to feature on a Bank of England bank note.

The victor will be announced next summer, although the new polymer note will not go into circulation until 2020 at the earliest.

Figures such as Stephen Hawking and Dorothy Hodgkin are among the early frontrunners in the race to be on the new plastic note, which comes as part of a six-week process where the public can put forward scientists for the Bank's character selection process.

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Mr Carney said: 'There is a wealth of individuals whose work has shaped how we think about the world and who continue to inspire people today'.

A scientist or mathematician - but not an economist - will feature on Britain's next 50 pound banknote following a six-week period starting on Friday in which the public are invited to propose candidates.

The existing banknote features engineer James Watt and his business partner Matthew Boulton, who developed and marketed the steam engine in the late 18th century.

All people on British banknotes, other than the monarch, must no longer be living and be real rather than fictional.

The current paper £20 will be replaced with a polymer version from 2020.

But the new issue will feature fresh security features. BoE officials, assisted by four scientists, will then decide a shortlist and Carney will announce the successful design in 2019.

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