Jane Austen emerges as front-runner to replace Charles Darwin on £10 note
Announcement follows row over choice of Sir Winston Churchill to appear on £5 notes in place of one of only two women selected since historical figures were introduced in 1970
Novelist Jane Austen is the leading candidate to replace Charles Darwin on the £10 note, outgoing Bank of England governor Sir Mervyn King has revealed.
The author of literary classics such as Pride And Prejudice and Sense And Sensibility has been picked as the so-called "contingency candidate" to appear on notes.
Sir Mervyn told MPs on the Treasury Select Committee that she was "quietly waiting in the wings" and was in pole position to appear on the £10 note as and when the notes are changed.
His comments follow a row over the choice of Sir Winston Churchill to appear on £5 notes in place of prison reformer Elizabeth Fry - one of only two women selected since historical figures were introduced in 1970.
The decision to use the wartime leader in April led to an online petition and the threat of potential legal action under the Equality Act.
The Bank said earlier this month that a mystery woman had been drawn up as a contingency, but her identity had not been revealed until today.
The Bank has not yet made a decision on when the £10 note will be changed.
Austen would be only the third woman to appear on banknotes, following Ms Fry and pioneering nurse Florence Nightingale, who was previously on £10 notes.
Set among the English middle and upper classes, Austen's books are notable for their wit, social observation and insights into the lives of early 19th century women - earning her a place as one of the most widely read writers in English literature.
- 2 Tunisia hotel attack: Locals form 'human shield' to protect hotel from gunman Seifeddine Rezgui
- 3 Russian officials ban yoga because it's too much like a religious cult
- 4 German ethics council calls for incest between siblings to be legalised by Government
- 5 Ginger Pride festival to take place next summer, organisers say 'time of bullying gingers is over'
Tunisia hotel attack: Locals form 'human shield' to protect hotel from gunman Seifeddine Rezgui
German ethics council calls for incest between siblings to be legalised by Government
People are American flagging their Facebook profile pictures in response to those rainbow flagging them
Ginger Pride festival to take place next summer, organisers say 'time of bullying gingers is over'
Historic meeting between Pope Francis and Russian Orthodox head 'getting closer'
The moment a Queen's Guard soldier lost it and drew his gun at annoying tourist
Greece crisis: The wider lesson is that it’s time to abandon this failed experiment in currencies
'I wish the BBC would stop calling it Islamic State' – David Cameron unleashes frustration at broadcaster
Greece crisis: IMF was pushed around by Angela Merkel and Nicholas Sarkozy – and now it is being humiliated
Pentagon accuses Russia of 'playing with fire' over nuclear threats towards Nato
They are neither a 'state' nor 'Islamic': Why we shouldn't call them Isis, Isil or IS
£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £45K: SThree: SThree were established in 1986....
£18000 - £24000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An exciting opportunity has ari...
£15000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An On-line Sales & Customer Ser...
£15000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of the largest hospitality companies...