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Return of the fiver

The Bank of England yesterday pledged to increase the number of five pound notes in circulation every year to around 800 million.

The amount of battered fivers in circulation is high, and the frustration among the population about notes being refused by ticket machines palpable. The Bank of England has therefore decided to increase the number of ATMs that dispense the lowest denomination.

Victoria Cleland, head of the bank’s note division, claims that research has found that people are annoyed by the lack of fresh, crisp notes in circulation.

She said: 'A clear message comes from the letters sent to us by members of the public and in surveys - good quality five pound notes are too hard to come by.'

Figures show that just 2000 of Britain’s 63,200 cash machines dispense the humble fiver.

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