On 22nd May 2014 the Clydesdale Bank 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.”