1960 Ten Pound Coombs/Wilson WA/62 Last Prefix R63x Uncirculated
Front: Arthur Philip at left
Back: Female figure at right, engraving of industry and science at centre
This superb ten-pound note was held in RBA archives for 25 years.
Note Printing Australia and the Reserve Bank released just 800 rare banknote portfolios to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the introduction of decimal currency in 1991. The portfolios are referred to by collectors as the "25th Anniversary Portfolio", this ten-pound note was cut out of one of those folders.
The 25th anniversary folders include one of each of the last 1,000 ten shillings, one pound, five pounds and ten pound notes ever printed in Australia, and also include one of each of the first one dollar, two dollars, ten dollars and twenty dollars ever printed in Australia.
The 25th Anniversary portfolio was followed up in 1994 by another portfolio of banknotes that is often referred to by collectors as the "Triple Set". The Triple Set commemorated three different anniversaries of the remaining notes circulating in Australia at that time - the 5 dollars, 50 dollars and 100 dollars. All of the notes included in both folders were taken from Reserve Bank archives and are incredibly rare.
Values of both sets ramped up strongly during the boom market of the 1990's and 2000's - prices of the matched pairs of banknotes peaked at around $12,500 in the early 2000's.
The market for first and last prefix notes was just starting to emerge at that time, so some collectors and dealers chose to cut sets up and either store or sell individual notes.
This note clearly comes from one of those sets - I believe at most there are no more than a few hundred such notes available individually to collectors.
While the notes were held in RBA archives, they were counted for stocktake purposes periodically. I have personally examined many of these notes over the years, and can say that each and every such note I've seen has been in crisp and natural condition, and exhibits one or more teller flicks on the right hand side.
I have absolutely no problems regarding these ex-RBA notes as being in Uncirculated condition - yes, they have teller flicks on them, but as those flicks occurred within the RBA's four walls and are not the result of having been in circulation. I'd certainly prefer a note such as this - one that has a finite and known mintage figure and is known to have never entered circulation, over a note that is ex-circulation and has been pressed and flattened of folds.
This note is an excellent representative of the QEII ten pound series.
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