Commitment to support the UK’s Wholesale Cash Distribution (WCD) network: View the update

Clydesdale Go Polymer

Clydesdale Bank will issue the first fully polymer banknote into British circulation in March 2015[1].

The issue, commemorating the 125th anniversary of the opening of the Forth Bridge, will see two million £5 banknotes distributed through Clydesdale’s branch network – representing roughly one for every three Scots but only a tiny fraction of the total £1.8bn Clydesdale notes in circulation.

Clydesdale, Scotland’s largest note issuer by volume, issues around £400m of new notes each year but has yet to commit to a full introduction of polymer. Polymer notes are proven to be more durable and harder to counterfeit than their traditional paper counterparts.

The banknote will also support this year’s nomination of the Forth Bridge for addition to UNESCO’s World Heritage List and will feature the portrait of Sir William Arrol, whose company constructed the bridge in 1890.

The notes will be produced from the SafeGuard™ polymer substrate developed by De La Rue plc and follow on from the Fijian $5, the first issue of the technology in April 2013 following four years of research and development[2]. This differs from the Bank of England’s forthcoming polymer issue, which will be produced from the Guardian® substrate developed by Innovia Security.

As an increasing number of issuing banks look towards polymer, Vaultex will work with the cash industry to ensure a smooth transition for customers, ATM providers and consumers.


[1] Clydesdale Bank Press Release

[2] De La Rue