Britain will become the largest economy to adopt washing-machine resistant polymer-based bank notes, which will also double a note's life expectancy in circulation.
''Secondly they are cleaner, they don't suffer from the deterioration we see from the paper-based ones and more durable - they'll last …two-and- a-half times as long …that means they are cheaper for the tax payer and also more environmentally friendly. So all of that is pretty significant and I should say that all of this is a culmination of a three year process that we've undertaken,'' Carney continued.
A public consultation, giving people the chance to handle the notes, found 87% of 13,000 individuals who responded were in favour of polymer.
The £5 note, featuring former UK Prime Minister Sir Winston Churchill, will be the first plastic banknote. The £10 note is to go plastic about a year later; this one will also have the image of author Jane Austen on it.
''Well I think it's good news for the NCA because it will reduce the counterfeiters ability to be able to counterfeit the banknotes produced on the polymer substrate. And also I think it's good news for the public's point of view because their bank notes are now going to be more durable and more hygienic,'' he said.
''Part of my job is to monitor trends internationally on counterfeiting and methods and materials used and what we've noticed, looking at other jurisdictions where they have polymer notes in general circulation, is that there is a reduction in the number of counterfeits that are even attempted let alone passed,'' Sheridan said.
The new notes will retain their familiar look, the Bank said, including the portrait of the Queen and a historical character.