I read an article in Coin News November 2007 issue published in UK and thought I need to let my readers in, as this would be of great interest to UK and particularly Scottish banknote collectors, on this unique confession as related by Trevor Jones.
In 1989, the Head Office of The Royal Bank of Scotland had an American tourist walk through its doors. Apparently the bank is used to receiving tourists who visit and request for old banknotes usually relating to periods they had previously lived in Scotland. The thing was though this particular visitor was not just requesting for old banknotes, he had a story to tell relating to some banknotes, a story that was interesting and a confession as well.
Mr W. H. Egan used to be an engraver's apprentice with W. & A. K. Johnston Ltd of Edinburgh who, in the 1950's were the banknote printers of The Royal Bank of Scotland. During this time he did a playfully unusual thing, he added his name to the design of the £1.00 note. This fact remained undiscovered by the bank or his employers until his confession 33 years later to the banks Chief Cashier.
The technical details are as follows:
- Mr Egan's rouge signature first appeared on The Royal Bank of Scotland's "B" note with the serial number "AJ" dated 1 February 1956 and remained on the design until the end of the "C" size issues in 1967. The last note in the series is "CX" dated 1 November 1967.
- The signature can be found on the reverse side of the notes, within the right hand vignette, above and slightly to the left of the word "GLASGOW"
- Catalogue numbers bearing this signiture are D49-1, D51a-1, D51b-1 and all specimen notes covered by these issues.