Sir William Arrol on new polymer banknote launched by Clydesdale Bank

Image showing a specimen of the front of the £5 note

The new banknote featuring Sir William Arrol  © Clydesdale Bank

Friends of Seafield House (FoSH) welcomes the news that the Clydesdale Bank has today unveiled a commemorative £5 note to mark the nomination of the Forth Rail Bridge for inclusion in UNESCO’s World Heritage List and Sir William Arrol’s role in the construction of this iconic bridge. As the release from the Clydesdale says:

“[This] will be the first fully polymer banknote to enter circulation in Great Britain. Introduced to commemorate the nomination of the Forth Bridge for inclusion in UNESCO’s World Heritage List in 2014, the new £5 banknote combines images of the bridge’s structure with the use of modern technology to create a striking and complex design … in keeping with the Bank’s award winning World Heritage Series, [the note] also features the image of a prominent and innovative Scot in its design. A portrait of Sir William Arrol, one of Scotland’s most celebrated engineers, appears on the front of the note. His company – Sir William Arrol and Co. – constructed the Forth Bridge and was also responsible for a number of other famous structures including the giant cantilever Titan Crane in Clydebank which also features on the new note.”

The limited production run of the new polymer notes is scheduled to coincide with the 125th anniversary of the opening of the bridge in March 2015, with two million notes to be issued through Clydesdale Bank branches.

In its release, Clydesdale Bank included a quote from Fiona Hyslop, Cabinet Secretary for
Culture and External Affairs, who said in welcoming the launch of the banknote:

“Today we are celebrating two eras of Scotland’s innovation and foresight. The introduction of this innovative new banknote featuring the iconic Forth Bridge as a symbol of Scotland’s engineering heritage and ingenuity is very welcome. We are immensely proud of the Forth Bridge and its nomination for inclusion in UNESCO’s World Heritage List. The launch of this banknote is such a fitting way to mark this nomination and Sir William Arrol’s work and I applaud the Clydesdale Bank for this gesture.”

FoSH Patron, Andrew Arrol, said today:

“This is a fantastic piece of good news and very well deserved. It is entirely appropriate that one of Scotland’s greatest engineering achievements should be commemorated in this way.”

Kirsty Menzies, an Arrol relative & FoSH Committee Member said:

“I am thrilled and proud that Sir William Arrol is featured on the note. With his induction into the Scottish Engineering Hall of Fame and now being featured on a banknote, Sir William is finally getting the recognition that he has long deserved. The banknote design embodies a great image of the Scottish pioneering spirit and invention.”

For further information on the release from the Clydesdale Bank, please contact Kay McCarthy The BIG Partnership 0141 333 9585/07736 774338 or Roanna Katz, The BIG Partnership, 0141 333 9585 / 07846 786 265

For further information on Friends of Seafield House, please contact Lianne Hackett, FoSH Secretary on or 07796466384