Anyone who has ever watched a wildlife documentary, or even just stumbled upon one accidentally, has probably heard the soothing, dulcet tones of Sir David Attenborough. The legendary broadcaster is known and loved by many - not least of all his fellow Brits - who are calling for him to be the face of the new £50 note.
As reported by Unilad, the UK government recently announced that it will be introducing a new polymer £50 note in the hopes of tackling the hidden economy and illegitimate cash. Whilst fighting financial crime is an important issue for UK citizens, it appears the more pressing matter for them is whose face will feature on the new money.
Previous notes, which range in value from £5 to £50, have included important historical figures such as Winston Churchill, Charles Darwin, and the beloved genius behind Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen.
The Bank of England outlines the prerequisites for potential candidates as having, “shaped UK society through their thought innovation, leadership or values.” According to the British public and their passionate Twitter support, Attenborough seems to fit the bill perfectly.
Attenborough is a well-established national treasure in the UK. This latest appeal, if successful, would not be the first time his name has been lovingly immortalized in British heritage and culture.
A center for biodiversity in Cambridge adopted the great explorer’s name as its own in 2016, and the Natural Environment Research Council recently named its new polar research vessel the “RRS Sir David Attenborough”, despite the British public overwhelmingly voting for the title, “Boaty McBoatface.”
Twitter is rife with Brits calling on the Bank of England to choose the famed naturalist for the new note, with some even amounting a failure to do so with national shame and disgrace.
If David Attenborough isn’t on the new £50 we truly have failed as a nation— Georgie Dawson (@Gxorgxdawson) October 15, 2018
It’ll be a shameful day for the British nation if Sir David Attenborough isn’t the face for the new £50 note— makie (@makieds) October 15, 2018
If another candidate beats Attenborough to the post, this will be the second time the British public have tried and failed to have his face printed on UK cash. Almost a year ago exactly, YouGov surveyed over 2000 Britons about who they would like to grace the new £20 note. Unsurprisingly, the documentary maker came out on top, with 40% of the votes.
Much to the disappointment of Attenborough’s adoring fans, it seems the matter was a foregone conclusion. The Bank of England had already announced a year prior that JMW Turner, a celebrated British painter, would be the chosen one.
Perhaps the second time will be a charm for Attenborough, the mastermind behind such documentary series as Planet Earth, Life, and Africa. The wildlife expert has become such a staple in the world of British television that the BBC dedicated a week of programming to celebrate the icon for his 90th birthday.
With such an impassioned fanbase behind him, and an already impressive list of creatures, buildings, and transport vessels to his name, it is probably only a matter of time until the Bank of England grants the British public’s wishes. After all, it would be a matter of national shame if they didn’t.