HC Deb 31 March 1960 vol 620 c1501
37. Mr. Grimond

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will take powers to enable him to control the wording and design of bank notes.

Mr. Barber

No. Sir.

Mr. Grimond

If the Minister will not introduce legislation, will he at least represent to the Bank of England that it should cease to print what is pure mumbo-jumbo on bank notes about, "I promise to pay the bearer one pound"? It means nothing now, and it does our credit no good.

Mr. Barber

I do not follow that, because it has a meaning. If I may explain to the hon. Gentleman, without going into great detail, the fact is that if the legal tender status of the note, in other words, its right to be used in our currency, were withdrawn at any time, the Bank of England's promise to pay would still be there because it is unlimited in time.

Mr. Lipton

Is the hon. Gentleman aware that many of my constituents, and I, would be very glad to take these notes away from anyone who does not want them?

Sir P. Agnew

Regarding the current issue of bank notes, and having made due provision for the hon. Member for Brixton (Mr. Lipton), would my hon. Friend give a directive to the Bank of England to pulp the remainder?