Face value: The changing value of your £10 note

Face value: The changing vale of your £10 note


  • As the old £10 note goes out of circulation, MoneySuperMarket reveals how it can buy less than ever before
  • Key goods and services analysed to show what £10 would buy you in 2000 vs 2018 - as price fluctuations, inflation and stagnating wages hit Brits hard
  • A tenner in 2000 would buy almost 20 loaves of bread, but fewer than 10 today1
  • Average domestic electricity bill has risen 132.78 per cent since 2000 and the average domestic gas bill has risen 84.74 per cent2

With the old £10 note going out of circulation on 1st March, leading price comparison website MoneySuperMarket has analysed how its value has evolved since it was first introduced in 2000. The research reveals the price of goods and services that have changed most dramatically over the past 18 years, including a pint of beer, a loaf of bread and a Freddo chocolate bar, highlighting how inflation and slow growth in wages has contributed to the decreasing value of the £10 note.

The changing value of your £10 note




% change

Car insurance - fully comprehensive policy




Average annual salary




Petrol (per litre, unleaded)




Premier League Season ticket




Food (per person, per week)




Inflation - benchmark




Average cinema ticket




Basic state pension




Average domestic gas bill




Pint of beer




Loaf of bread, white sliced




Average house price




Average domestic electricity bill




Freddo chocolate bar





Using historical inflation data from the Bank of England, MoneySuperMarket found that £10 in 2000 holds the equivalent value of £16.51 today8. While the price of some goods and services have stayed roughly in line with inflation, others have shot up considerably, leaving many Brits struggling to keep up with the constant price rises.

Since 2000, prices have risen across the board, particularly in the food and drink sector. The average food shop (per person, per week) has risen by 54.4 per cent since 2000, from £23.97 to £37. This means a £10 note would have covered 41.7 per cent of your weekly shop in 2000, but just 27 per cent today.

Analysis of individual food and drink items, such as a pint of beer and a loaf of bread, also indicated that prices rose well beyond inflation. £10 in 2000 would have allowed you to purchase 19.23 loaves of bread or 5.7 pints of beer, yet in 2018 your £10 would only stretch to 9.35 loaves of bread or just 2.8 pints of beer. The well-documented price of a Freddo chocolate bar was also found to have risen by a staggering 200 per cent over the past 18 years, costing just 10p in 2000 compared to 30p in 2018.

Household bills have also skyrocketed since the introduction of the £10 note, with energy bills increasing the most. According to Ofgem figures from 2000, the average price of a standard domestic gas bill was £308 and the average cost of a standard domestic electricity bill was £238. Both have risen sharply in the past 18 years and now stand at £549 (gas) and £554 (electricity) – inflation-busting rises of 84.74 per cent and 132.78 per cent respectively.

Major price increases can also be  seen in the property sector, where the average UK home value increased by 131.6 per cent in the past 18 years, from £97,600 to £226,071. As a result, a large portion of the younger generations are currently struggling to get on the property ladder and buy their own homes.

Sally Francis-Miles, money expert at MoneySuperMarket, commented: “With just days to go before the old £10 note goes out of circulation, looking back at what £10 would buy you in 2000 provides an interesting snapshot of the past 18 years. At the turn of the millennium, your tenner would easily stretch to cover a few drinks and a couple of loaves of bread, with change left over for a chocolate bar. Today, you’d struggle to cover one round in your local pub. Those paying utility bills are the real inflation sufferers here, seeing their prices skyrocket over the past 18 years. With inflation shooting up and wages remaining relatively stagnant, it’s no wonder families are feeling more squeezed than ever before.

“If you are struggling with your bills, there are a few steps you can follow to take control of your finances  and get on top of your payments. Firstly, it’s crucial you face up to your debts – burying your head in the sand isn’t going to make it all go away. Make a comprehensive list of all the companies you owe money to and try to prioritise your payments, concentrating first on the vital bills that ensure a roof is kept over your head and then on high interest payments. Consider moving high interest payments via a balance transfer card to one that offers a 80% introductory rate. If you are still finding your debts unaffordable, try speaking to your creditors to see if you can negotiate the terms of your payment. If you find yourself in serious financial trouble, professional advice is always available from the likes of the Money Advice Trust and StepChange.”

For more information on managing your debts, visit MoneySuperMarket’s guide to getting to grips with your finances: https://www.moneysupermarket.com/debt/


1Cost of a loaf of white sliced bread taken from ONS tracking: https://www.ons.gov.uk/economy/inflationandpriceindices/timeseries/czoh/mm23

2Data from 2000 taken from an Ofgem competiton report: https://www.ofgem.gov.uk/ofgem-publications/64122/1070-factsheet010229jan.pdf and recent data sourced from Ofgem: https://www.ofgem.gov.uk/publications-and-updates/infographic-bills-prices-and-profits

3Data from 2000 taken from The Automobile Association: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/4459277/These-days-a-soft-top-is-never-a-soft-option.html and recent data sourced from MoneySuperMarket’s internal data from February 2018.

4Source: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/593477.stm and latest data from the ONS: https://www.ons.gov.uk/employmentandlabourmarket/peopleinwork/earningsandworkinghours/bulletins/annualsurveyofhoursandearnings/2017provisionaland2016revisedresults

5Sources: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/800040.stm and https://www.express.co.uk/life-style/cars/902324/petrol-price-increase-oil-cost-fuel-diesel-cars

6Sources: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/football/2017/11/16/price-football-80-per-cent-premier-league-ticket-prices-reduced/ and https://www.theguardian.com/football/2000/feb/11/newsstory.sport11

7National Food Survey, 1999: http://webarchive.nationalarchives.gov.uk/20130125041517/http://www.defra.gov.uk/statistics/files/defra-stats-foodfarm-food-familyfood-nfs-1999.pdf and RPI from 2018.

8Measured using the historic Retail Price Index: https://www.ons.gov.uk/economy/inflationandpriceindices/timeseries/czbh/mm23

9Source: https://www.cinemauk.org.uk/the-industry/facts-and-figures/uk-cinema-industry-economics-and-turnover/average-ticket-price/

10Source: http://adviser.royallondon.com/technical-central/rates-and-factors/state-pension/basic-state-pension-rates/

11Costs for a pint of beer sourced from IFS https://www.ifs.org.uk/ff/final1.pdf and The Good Pub Guide http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-41183028

12Includes Broker Land Registry figures from 1999: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/593477.stm and Landregistry data sourced on 01.02.18 http://landregistry.data.gov.uk/app/ukhpi


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