This week Bermuda announced new designs for its 2009 banknotes, and newspapers from Bermuda to London picked up the story. I guess it's true that no good deed goes unpunished. In what must be routine for every new coin and banknote, critics chime in to tell the designers everything they've done wrong. Subsequent articles criticize the new designs for everything from the size of the Queen's head to the specific species of waterfowl depicted. -EditorCash may not be plentiful right now - but it's certainly getting more colourful.
The island's currency has undergone a complete redesign, and will soon utilize state-of-the-art anti-counterfeiting technology - and feature animals and local settings in its artwork.
The Bermuda Monetary Authority this week unveiled the new bills - which will begin circulating along side current banknotes in early '09.
They're also typeset vertically instead of horizontally, something not seen on many national currencies, except for Venezuela and Switzerland.
The $2, $5, $10 $20, $50 and $100 denominations keep their overall colour scheme, but now display birds, fish, or in the case of the twenty - a small frog where the Queen's head would normally be.
The portrait of the Queen has been removed as the prominent image, made smaller, and will now be featured in the bottom left corner of the front of the bill.
Pictures of prominent Bermuda landmarks such as the Lighthouse, Somerset Bridge, and St. Peter's Church adorn the reverse sides.
But the most important feature of the new notes is their cutting-edge security features, BMA officials said.
They have a unique feature called 'optiks' in the form of an oval on the front strip, which look metallic in reflected daylight, and transparent with a map of Bermuda on the back strip, according to Marcia Woolridge-Allwood, director of corporate and financial services at the BMA.
I found it interesting that the notes are oriented vertically - this was the first time I'd heard of this type of design, although the article does mention two other countries with notes like this. That would make for a great coin show exhibit. Below is the article's key to the security features labeled in the image above. -Editor1. Watermark and hibiscus flower visible when held to light
2. See-through feature when held to light
3. Serial numbers increasing in size
4. Iridescent band on the $20, $50 and $100 denominations
5. Latent image (tilt the image and the denomination numeral appears)
To read the complete article, see: High-tech new cash unveiled Redesigned notes to begin circulating in 2009 (http://www.bermudasun.bm/main.asp?SectionID=72&
Wayne Homren, Editor
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