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20 Pounds Sterling 2004, Kingdom of Great Britain

in Banknotes Book Number: BE222c
Years of issue: 01.2004
Edition: --
Signatures: Chief Cashier: Mr. A. Bailey (01.2004 - 2011)
Serie: England
Specimen of: 22.06.1999
Material: Cotton fiber
Size (mm): 150 х 80
Printer: Bank of England print works, Loughton (Debden), Essex, UK

* All pictures marked magnify are increased partially by magnifying glass, the remaining open in full size by clicking on the image.

** The word "Specimen" is present only on some of electronic pictures, in accordance with banknote images publication rules of appropriate banks.

20 Pounds Sterling 2004

Description

Watermark:

watermark

HM The Queen Elizabeth II at a young age.

Avers:

20 Pounds Sterling 2004

HM The Queen Elizabeth II.

In preparation for the "E Series" of notes, issued by the Bank of England, photographs of The Queen were especially commissioned by the Bank. The photographs were taken by Don Ford in 1985-1986, one of the Bank’s technical photographers, under the direction of Roger Withington. Mr. Withington designed the notes of the "E Series" and prepared the engraving of the Queen, which appeared on this series of notes, from one of the photographs taken by Mr. Ford. The portrait shows Queen Elizabeth wearing Queen Mary’s "Girls of Great Britain and Ireland" Tiara, Queen Alexandra’s cluster earrings and, although difficult to identify, Queen Victoria’s Golden Jubilee necklace.

Elizabeth IIThe engraving on banknote is, probably, made after this photo by Don Ford, 1985-1986.

Tiara Girls of Great Britain and Ireland

Queen Mary received this tiara as a wedding gift in 1893, from a committee representing "the girls of Great Britain and Ireland". The funds for the purchase of the tiara were raised by a committee, formed by Lady Eve Greville. The tiara was purchased from Garrard, the London jeweler.

It featured pearls on top and a detachable base; Mary removed the pearls. She gave it to her granddaughter, Princess Elizabeth, as a wedding present in 1947. The Queen originally wore it without the base before reuniting the pieces in 1969.

Said to be light and easy to wear, the Girls of Great Britain and Ireland Tiara seems to be the Queen's favorite - she's said to call it "Granny's tiara", and it is her most frequently worn diadem.

The "Girls of Great Britain and Ireland" Tiara can be worn with or without a bandeau base and, in this portrait, the tiara is set into its base. (Portrait of Dorothy Wilding, 1952, shows the Tiara being worn without the base). (From her Majesty's jewel vault)

Queen Victoria’s Golden Jubilee necklace

To mark Queen Victoria’s Golden Jubilee in 1887, a committee of ladies was formed to raise money for a commemorative statue of Victoria’s late husband Prince Albert. The committee’s fundraising was quite successful, and they ended up raising far more than was required for the statue. An agreement was formed with the Queen that the excess should go to the St. Katherine’s Fund for Nurses. At the same time, some members of the committee decided that a portion of the funds should be used to purchase a necklace for the Queen - and this was also approved by Her Majesty.

The trouble was, the committee did not agree on the necklace. Some felt it would be wrong to spend the funds which had been previously devoted to charity on something else. Much discussion and debate ensued, as is described in depth in Hugh Roberts’ book The Queen’s Diamonds. (My favorite tidbit: Queen Victoria, angry that she wouldn’t get her promised necklace, shot down the prospect of a diamond badge commemorating the nursing fund by declaring she would “at once exchange it for another jewel”.

In the end, a compromise was reached and this necklace, made for £5000 (far less than the necklace originally proposed) from gold, diamonds, and pearls by Carrington & Co. was presented to Queen Victoria in 1888. It features a central quatrefoil diamond motif with a large pearl in the middle, topped by a crown and underlined with a drop pearl. The next four links in either direction are graduated trefoil motifs; the central piece and the six largest trefoils can also be worn as brooches.

Queen Alexandra’s Cluster Earrings

She is also wearing Queen Alexandra’s Cluster Earrings. The wedding gift from the future King Edward VII to his bride, Alexandra of Denmark. Also known as Queen Alexandra's Cluster Earrings, these two button earrings have large pearls surrounded by diamonds - 10 larger stones each plus smaller filler stones to create a full diamond ring. Like the brooch, these passed to the Queen via Queen Mary. They're now worn primarily at evening functions.

On the left side is a hologram window with sitting Britannia (as logo of Bank of England).

At the top are the musical notes.

Denominations in numerals are in top corners. In center in words.

Revers:

20 Pounds Sterling 2004

Edward ElgarThe engraving on banknote is made after this photo of Sir Edward William Elgar, between 1900 and 1910.

Sir Edward William Elgar, 1st Baronet OM GCVO (2 June 1857 - 23 February 1934) was an English composer, many of whose works have entered the British and international classical concert repertoire. Among his best-known compositions are orchestral works including the Enigma Variations, the Pomp and Circumstance Marches, concertos for violin and cello, and two symphonies. He also composed choral works, including The Dream of Gerontius, chamber music and songs. He was appointed Master of the King's Musick in 1924.

Although Elgar is often regarded as a typically English composer, most of his musical influences were not from England but from continental Europe. He felt himself to be an outsider, not only musically, but socially. In musical circles dominated by academics, he was a self-taught composer; in Protestant Britain, his Roman Catholicism was regarded with suspicion in some quarters; and in the class-conscious society of Victorian and Edwardian Britain, he was acutely sensitive about his humble origins even after he achieved recognition. He nevertheless married the daughter of a senior British army officer. She inspired him both musically and socially, but he struggled to achieve success until his forties, when after a series of moderately successful works his Enigma Variations (1899) became immediately popular in Britain and overseas. He followed the Variations with a choral work, The Dream of Gerontius (1900), based on a Roman Catholic text that caused some disquiet in the Anglican establishment in Britain, but it became, and has remained, a core repertory work in Britain and elsewhere. His later full-length religious choral works were well received but have not entered the regular repertory.

In his fifties, Elgar composed a symphony and a violin concerto that were immensely successful. His second symphony and his cello concerto did not gain immediate public popularity and took many years to achieve a regular place in the concert repertory of British orchestras. Elgar's music came, in his later years, to be seen as appealing chiefly to British audiences. His stock remained low for a generation after his death. It began to revive significantly in the 1960s, helped by new recordings of his works. Some of his works have, in recent years, been taken up again internationally, but the music continues to be played more in Britain than elsewhere.

Elgar has been described as the first composer to take the gramophone seriously. Between 1914 and 1925, he conducted a series of acoustic recordings of his works. The introduction of the microphone in 1925 made far more accurate sound reproduction possible, and Elgar made new recordings of most of his major orchestral works and excerpts from The Dream of Gerontius. .

Worcester CathedralOn left side is west side of Worcester Cathedral.

The composer Edward Elgar spent most of his life in Worcestershire. The first performance of the revised version of his Enigma Variations - the version usually performed - took place at the cathedral during the 1899 Three Choirs Festival. He is commemorated in a stained glass window which contains his portrait.

Worcester Cathedral, before the English Reformation known as Worcester Priory, is an Anglican cathedral in Worcester, England; situated on a bank overlooking the River Severn. It is the seat of the Bishop of Worcester. Its official name is The Cathedral Church of Christ and the Blessed Mary the Virgin of Worcester. Built between 1084 and 1504, Worcester Cathedral represents every style of English architecture from Norman to Perpendicular Gothic. It is famous for its Norman crypt and unique chapter house, its unusual Transitional Gothic bays, its fine woodwork and its "exquisite" central tower, which is of particularly fine proportions.

St.CeciliaOn left side, lower, is Saint Cecilia, resting with an instrument.

Saint Cecilia (Latin: Sancta Caecilia) is the patroness of musicians. It is written that as the musicians played at her wedding she "sang in her heart to the Lord". Her feast day is celebrated in the Latin Catholic, Eastern Catholic, Anglican, and Eastern Orthodox churches on November 22. She is one of seven women, excluding the Blessed Virgin, commemorated by name in the Canon of the Mass.

While the details of her story appear to be fictional, her existence and martyrdom are considered a historical fact. She is said to have been beheaded with a sword. An early Roman Christian church, Santa Cecilia, was founded in the fourth century in the Trastevere section of Rome, reputedly on the site of the house in which she lived. A number of musical compositions are dedicated to her, and her feast day, November 22, became the occasion of for concerts and musical festivals.

On top is the muse with the trumpet.

Denominations in numerals are in top corners. In center in words.

Comments:

Designer: Roger Withington & Andrew Ward.

Metallic security thread.

First issued at June 22, 1999.

Withdrawn at June 30, 2010.