eBay ‘upside down’ fivers selling for silly money after ex-sailor’s prank

editorial image
Brian and Jean Crabb

Fareham couple win battle with UGG after boots ruined in the rain

Have your say

Online auction site eBay is being flooded with listings for ‘upside down’ five pound notes - with some attracting bids of thousands of pounds.

The sudden interest in collecting banknotes has been sparked by former sailor Mike Harris, who listed an ‘upside-down fiver for sale - and attracted bids of as much as £65,000.

However, interest in rare currency has recently received a boost, as when the Bank of England introduced their new plastic fivers, low-numbered notes were attracting bids of as much as £4,150 from currency collectors.

The original listing for the upside-down note read: “New £5 bank note printed upside down. Extremely rare opportunity for the most serious collectors. Seller can confirm that this is the only known upside down £5 note in existence”.

However, the fact that the sale was tongue-in-cheek was flagged by the additional info supplied by Mr Harris, a former Master-at-Arms in the Royal Navy.

The Welshman wrote on eBay: “Authenticity of note verified by Department of Upside down Printed English Denominations (DUPED).”

Although the original listing has been removed - eBay rules bar the same of novelty money (even though this was a genuine note) - dozens of similar listings have since appeared.

With very few of the listings attracting bids - and none close to the £65,000 apparently bid - it seems that - though those newly attracted to the study of money, or numismatics, should still beware.