Check your pockets: it's the last chance to spend old fivers

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From midnight Friday May 5 the old fiver will be withdrawn from circulation and will no longer be accepted in most shops.

2017 has seen big changes in our notes and coins, with the new £1 coin being introduced in March and now the old paper Bank of England £5 note being replaced with the new polymer version.

To put that into perspective, the remaining value of the notes equates to approximately £750 million.

As the polymer note replaces the paper one, it marks an absence of women on bank notes.

The old paper £5 notes, once withdrawn from circulation are already being recycled using a composting treatment, similar to the treatment of food waste.

The Bank said some banks and building societies may continue to accept the old fiver after May 5 - but this is at their own discretion so people may want to check their bank or building society's policy. In January, the Post Office launched a service with banks that enables their customers to perform everyday banking services in all post offices across the UK.

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The paper fivers cease to be legal tender tomorrow (May 5), which means you won't be able to buy anything with them.

Generally, you will need to be a customer of the bank or building society to make a swap.

Luckily for those who still haven't cashed them in, all legal tender keeps its value even after the notes have gone out of circulation, meaning if the local bank will not accept them then the Bank of England will.

Shops have now been told not to hand over old £5 notes as change to customers. If you are doing it by post, there is a form to fill in first.

The new fiver is stronger than its predecessor and boasts new security features making it harder to counterfeit.

In September this year, the Bank will issue a new £10 polymer note featuring author Jane Austen.

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