Long live the Queen

According to documents obtained by Reuters under access-to-information laws earlier this month, when the Bank of Canada was designing the country’s latest $20 banknote, it considered ending its “tradition” of depicting the reigning monarch—if Queen Elizabeth died, or abdicated the throne.

According to the documents, the death of the Queen – the longest-reigning British monarch and sovereign of Canada – was discussed several times at the Bank of Canada dating back to 2007. She appears on all of Canada’s circulation coins but only one banknote: the $20 bill.


According to Reuters, bank staff wrote depicting the reigning monarch was “a matter of tradition.”

“In the event the Queen dies or abdicates before the new notes are issued, a decision will need to be taken as to whether to continue this tradition or to replace the image,” read a 2008 paper, which also showed the staff’s concern about increased costs and delays if Elizabeth did die.

It also appears plans were made for someone or something to replace the Queen’s image; however, those plans remain a secret as parts of the documents were redacted.


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