Rare plastic £5 note sells for more than £60,000 on eBay as market for unusual fivers spirals

A rare £5 note has sold online for more more than £60,000.

The fiver, one of the new polymer notes introduced by the Royal Mint in September, features the serial number AA01 44444 – meaning it was one of the earliest to be printed.

The banknote went up for auction on eBay last week, with 21 bidders placing 136 bids.

The winning bid stood at £60,100 when the auction closed earlier today.

The new plastic fivers, featuring Sir Winston Churchill, were introduced to combat counterfeiting.

The starting bid for the note was just £1
(Photo: Caters News Agency)

They will replace the old fivers featuring prison reformer Elizabeth Fry when the paper notes ceases to be legal tender in May.

Since entering circulation, the plastic banknotes have become a highly sought after prize among currency collectors, with the low serial numbers fetching the highest amounts.

Of the 440 million new £5 notes released, four of them are engraved with a tiny portrait of Jane Austen, and are said to be worth £50,000 each.

The early plastic note attracted a high number of bids
(Photo: Caters News Agency)
It eventually went for £60,100
(Photo: Caters News Agency)

Only two of the Austen fivers have been found so far.

Woman GIVES AWAY rare Jane Austen fiver worth £50,000 as ‘she doesn’t need the money at my time of life’

The fivers have also sparked controversy, after it was revealed polymer pellets used to make the notes contained tallow, a substance made from animal fat.

The news sparked outrage amongst animals rights groups, vegans, vegetarians and some religious organisations, some of which refused to deal in the new currency.

But the Bank of England has said it will also continue to produce polymer £5 notes laced with animal fat for some time to come – because it would cost the taxpayer up to £10million to replace them.

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