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Tuesday, 18 December, 2001, 10:25 GMT
Prison reformer makes new 5 note
Current 5 note with George Stephenson
George Stephenson is losing his place on the fiver
The nineteenth century prison reformer Elizabeth Fry is to become only the second woman to appear on the back of an English banknote.

The Quaker charity worker, who fought to improve prison conditions for women, will replace inventor George Stephenson on the 5 note.

She follows in the footsteps of nurse Florence Nightingale, who appeared on the 10 note.

Elizabeth Fry
Elizabeth Fry was known as the Angel of the Prisons

The Bank of England said it would include a portrait of the campaigner and a picture "appropriate to her achievements".

The new notes, to be introduced next summer, will share the style and improved security features of the new 10 note, first circulated in November 2000, and a 20 note released in June 1999.

It will be the same size and colour as the existing 5 note and will feature the same portrait of the Queen on the front.

The old and new notes will initially circulate together, while the George Stephenson design is slowly withdrawn.

Penal reform

Commenting on the decision to honour Fry a Bank of England spokesman told BBC News Online: "We started putting eminent British people on the notes from 1970.

"The person chosen must have made an indisputable contribution to their particular field and Elizabeth Fry was a notable philanthropist."

Banknote faces
Old 5 note - George Stephenson
New 5 note - Elizabeth Fry
Old 10 note - Charles Dickens
New 10 note - Charles Darwin
20 note - Sir Edward Elgar
50 note - Sir John Houblon, first Bank of England governor
Fry, who lived from 1780 to 1845, made her name fighting for improved living conditions for women in European jails.

She campaigned for penal reform and in the early 19th century became known as the Angel of the Prisons.

After making her name as a protester, she went on to advise MPs, before lending her expertise to the prison authorities of Britain and mainland Europe.

Fry's statue is in London's Central Criminal Court and Elizabeth Fry societies exist across the world.

See also:

07 Nov 00 | UK
How to join the noteworthy
07 Nov 00 | UK
Change for a tenner
22 Jun 99 | The Economy
'Hairy' 20 note set to foil fakers
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