New 50-pound note features UK scientist Alan Turing


The Bank of England (BoE) has unveiled the design of a new 50-pound banknote featuring scientist Alan Turing, who is well known for codebreaking during the Second World War and pioneering work in computer science.

In an announcement on Thursday, the BoE said the banknote will enter circulation on June 23, which coincides with his birthday, Xinhua news agency reported.

The polymer 50-pound note would contain “advanced security features, completing our most secure set of Bank of England polymer banknotes yet”, said the BoE.

“I’m delighted that our new 50-pound features one of Britain’s most important scientists, Alan Turing,” said BoE Governor Andrew Bailey, applauding Turing as a codebreaker, mathematician, developmental biologist and pioneer in the computer science.

The public can continue to use paper 50-pound notes as usual, according to the BoE, adding that “notice will be given at least six months ahead of the date when the old paper 50-pound is withdrawn”.

In 2018, the BoE decided to choose the scientist on the new 50-pound banknote.

It received a total of 227,299 nominations, covering 989 eligible characters.

Turing is widely considered to be the father of theoretical computer science and Artificial Intelligence.

But in 1952, he was prosecuted for homosexual acts and two years later just before he turned 42, Turing died from cyanide poisoning.

Queen Elizabeth II granted Turing a posthumous pardon in 2013.