Fun Spoiled as Bank Demands a Dead Scientist for New £50 Note

By Gary Cutlack on at

The Bank of England has released some news we can understand for once, as it's all about the future of that rarest of English bank notes, the hold-it-up-to-the-light majesty of the big £50.

There's going to be a new polymer one hitting circulation a couple of years from now, and the BofE wants the public to contribute suggestions for who should be on it apart from the Queen. Only you can't suggest Rod Hull because he's not a scientist, and it probably won't be professor Brian Cox because he's not dead. The Bank only wants scientists that are dead to be on the new £50: great news for any dead scientists who were shocked to find themselves fully self-aware and in heaven with nothing much to do all day than eat grapes and masturbate after passing away.

Bank boss Mark Carney didn't specifically spell out that the note's winning scientist has to be dead when announcing the call for ideas, as he said: "There is a wealth of individuals whose work has shaped how we think about the world and who continue to inspire people today. Our banknotes are an opportunity to celebrate the diversity of UK society and highlight the contributions of its greatest citizens. My colleagues and I look forward to hearing from the public as they think science and put forward their nominations."

The text of the announcement says it wants a "historical character" on the notes, however, and the actual nomination form is where you have to say if your choice of the only scientist you can remember is dead or not; which strongly implies they want someone who only exists in black and white line drawing format and can therefore be easily pasted in. Although suggestions of the living are still submitted. I know, I did a joke one to test. Sorry, suits. Ignore the one about it being Vince Clarke for his work on synth melodies. [Bank of England]