Bank of England (Biographical details)

Bank of England (institution/organisation; 1694)

Also known as

Bank of England


Threadneedle Street, London EC2R 8AH


The central bank of the UK. Known as the 'Old Lady of Threadneedle Street'. Founded in 1694, nationalised in 1946, gained operational independence in 1997. Has been the sole issuer of banknotes in England and Wales since 1921, with the exception of some Treasury issues. (From Archibald & Blunt 1986, p.xxix: 'Collection presented by the Bank of England, 1877. M followed by a number denotes the registration number in the Bank MS. register in the British Museum. These coins were acquired by the Bank in 1812 with the collection of Robert Austen [c.1740-97]').
The Bank of England loaned their Collection to the British Museum in 1865 wishing to make it accessible to the general public. This remained as a separate Collection until 1877 when the Bank Directors decided it would be more useful to the museum and the public if incorporated into the national collection. The Bank of England collection was therefore presented to the British Museum in 1877, any duplicates being sold to create a coins and medals purchase fund. The coins from the Bank of England collection that did not become part of the British Museum were sold at auction; see 'Coins. The valuable collection of patterns', The Times, Tuesday, Jul 17, 1877; pg. 10; Issue 28996; col B (Sotheby, Wilkinson and Hodge, 13 July 1877); and 'Coins. Another selection of ancient coins from the Category', The Times, Tuesday, Feb 19, 1878; pg. 10; Issue 29182; col F.