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February 2012

The Last Prefix of Australia’s First 10/- Star Note!

Extraordinarily rare in Extremely Fine!

Star Notes are scarce to rare in any condition. The very first 10/- Star Note is no exception to the rule. Extremely difficult to source, especially as the 10/had a much higher rate of circulation than its higher The first time that Downies has had the pleasure of denomination counterparts – and therefore a much offering this great Australian rarity, we are proud to shorter life-span – the 10/- Armitage/McFarlane Star present the 10/- Armitage/McFarlane G95 Last Prefix Note is seldom seen on the market. More importantly Star Note. A banknote type of rich history, tremendous in the current context, the 10/- Armitage/McFarlane importance and unquestionable rarity, this particular G95 Last Prefix Star Note is virtually never offered. example is also defined by stunning Extremely Fine quality!

The Stars of the series…

Australia’s first 10/- Star Note…

A quick glance at the rate of price-growth over the For the first 35 years of the Australian banknote series, last 25 years illustrates that George VI Star Notes a note spoilt during printing was replaced with a note are among the star performers of the 1913-65 predecimal banknote series – especially when found bearing exactly the same 6-digit serial number – a in premium grade, as here. In 1988, a standard, nonlaborious, time-consuming process, done by hand. In 1948, however, the system of Star Replacement Notes Last Prefix Armitage/McFarlane 10/- Star Note in EF was valued at $2,000 – by 1993, it was thought to be was adopted, which saw any ruined note replaced worth $8,500. By 2001, the market value had soared with a pre-printed note featuring a 5-digit serial to $25,000, and by 2006, had jumped to $62,500. united with a five-pointed star. With this practice first implemented during the Armitage/McFarlane signature With a current catalogue value of $75,000 – and combination, the note before you therefore represents $78,500 for the G95 Last Prefix issue – the enormous potential of this note is blindingly obvious. the very first Australian 10/- Star Note!

Excessively rare – in any grade…

Last Prefix? Unknown potential…

With Star Notes only issued for the last four years of The fascinating thing about Last Prefix Star Notes is the King’s reign – and issued in the tiniest of numbers that it has only been in the last few years that these – it is universally acknowledged that all George VI rare types have been listed in Australian numismatic

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catalogues. In most cases, very few examples of Last Prefix Star Notes are known, and it seems that the market is yet to fully appreciate the tremendous rarity of such notes. In the case of the 1942-49 10/- Armitage/McFarlane G95 Last Prefix Star Note in EF, the catalogue value of $78,500 is just $3,500 above the catalogue price of a standard 10/- Star of the same signature combination. As it is recognised that First & Last Prefix notes generally fetch much, much higher prices than their standard prefix counterparts in the same grade, this seems to be a dramatic under-valuation of the note, and a serious underestimation of the longterm potential.

A vital opportunity… With Downies never having offered the 10/- Armitage/ McFarlane G95 Last Prefix Star Note before, this rare opportunity deserves the most serious consideration – especially given the outstanding state of preservation. Who knows how many years will pass before such a spectacular example will be seen on the market again?

$59,000

10/- ARMITAGE/ McFARLANE G95 LAST PREFIX STAR NOTE EF AT357

Call our Rarities expert, David Jobson, on (02) 9299 4131


A rare 1918 £1 Cerutty/Collins Uncirculated Consecutive Pair… To our knowledge the ONLY Unc pair in existence!

The Cerutty/Collins £1 Consecutive Pair – unique in Unc!

A once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, we are delighted to offer what is undoubtedly one of the rarest, most important banknote presentations Downies has handled in 80 years in the industry. A truly breathtaking chance for one of our clients to join the elite bracket of Australian numismatics, we have in stock one strictly Uncirculated 1918 £1 Cerutty/Collins Consecutive Pair – to our knowledge the ONLY £1 Cerutty/Collins Consecutive Pair in Unc existence!

If the opportunity to acquire a single Cerutty/Collins £1 in Uncirculated quality is rare, then it goes without saying that the chance to own a pair of consecutively numbered notes in original condition represents an awe-inspiring proposition. A consecutive pair is much rarer, and much more valuable, than two non-consecutive notes in the same grade. The rate of growth is naturally stronger, and there is no doubt that two notes bearing sequential serial numbers will command a premium at auction over the long-term – especially this Consecutive Pair.

One of Australia’s earliest banknotes… First issued in the year that the guns finally fell silent after four years of bloodshed during the 1914-18 Great War, the 1918 £1 Cerutty/Collins is an immensely historic banknote. One of the earliest note issues of Australia’s first national currency system, with the first banknotes unveiled in 1913, this iconic legal tender issue represents Australia’s first £1 type, and carries Australia’s second signature combination. For the history alone, this note has been highly sought after by collectors for decades, but, as one of the rarest issues of the £1 denomination, it is missing from a vast majority of collections.

Tremendously rare – in all grades… The rarity of the 1918 £1 Cerutty/Collins is in large part simply due to the comparatively tiny number of notes printed in the aftermath of WWI. Australia’s population at the end of the conflict was approximately five million. With a much smaller economy, it is natural that early Australian currency issues were released in much lower numbers than later in the 20th century. Above and beyond the impact of small print-runs, the rarity of early Australian £1 notes can also be attributed to the much higher circulation rates of lower denomination issues. In the early 1920s, the Australian Treasury estimated that a £1 note was likely to last a mere 10 months before withdrawn from circulation.

An astonishing opportunity for one of Downies clients, we believe this particular pair to be unique – to our knowledge, it is the ONLY Unc Cerutty/Collins £1 Consecutive Pair in existence ! The only other known Cerutty/Collins pair is graded gF–VF, and was last seen on the market eight years ago, when it sold for $20,000.

A limited window of opportunity… A prestigious acquisition for the collector, or for anyone looking to add a truly stellar performer to their numismatic portfolio, you must be quick. Such an immensely rare offering, and the finest 1918 £1 Cerutty/Collins notes we have ever offered, this pristine, unique Consecutive Pair is sure to be gone in an instant. I

Immensely rare opportunity to secure a 1918 £1 Cerutty/ Collins Consecutive Unc Pair – to our knowledge, the only pair known to exist!

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An extremely rare World War I era type – first issued 94 years ago

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Australia’s first £1 type, bearing the nation’s second signature combination

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Stunning, rarely seen quality – in pristine Uncirculated condition, with a minute pinhole

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A star performer, with a single Unc note leaping from $2,000 to $70,000 in just the last 23 years!

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Never before offered by Downies, we have only the single pair in stock

Soaring in market value… With early Australian banknotes such as the first £1 type so rare, the 1918 £1 Cerutty/Collins is not only highly sought after by the serious collector, but has long been the apple of the eye of the investor – especially in superior quality. The long-term performance of this rare type in Uncirculated condition has been breathtaking, with consistently robust growth over recent years. With a massive leap in competition for the few existing examples, the catalogue value of an individual Unc note has skyrocketed – as the figures below indicate… The rise and rise of the 1918 £1 Cerutty/Collins in Unc…

$109,000 1918 R21 £1 CERUTTY/COLLINS CONSECUTIVE PAIR Unc (with minute pinhole) AT358

1989 – $2,000 1993 – $2,750 1998 – $6,750 2003 – $19,500 2008 – $57,500 2011 – $70,000

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Call our Rarities expert, David Jobson, on (02) 9299 4131


An extremely ornate note, produced with what was then a complex printing process, the first Australian £1 type is one of the most aesthetically pleasing issues of the Australian banknote series

Unique in the Australian banknote series, with the reverse design only found on the first Australian £1 type, the 1918 £1 Cerutty/Collins pays homage to Australia’s mining industry

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Call our Rarities expert, David Jobson, on (02) 9299 4131


Premium quality, highest rarity… The 1927 £5 Riddle/Heathershaw in Extremely Fine to about Uncirculated!

Once in a while, an opportunity emerges of truly great potential. Exceedingly rare, regardless of the grade, the 1927 £5 Riddle/Heathershaw represents one such opportunity. Soaring in market value across all grades, this crucial Depression Era £5 type is one of the finest acquisitions that you could make – especially in the excessively rare Extremely Fine to about Uncirculated quality presented here!

collectors, and more lately investors, scrambling to own the few notes available, the market values of £5 and £10 notes have spiralled upwards over the past decade.

of $15,000 by 2005, this note is currently worth $27,500 in aUnc!

‘The higher the grade, the faster the growth’

Time is of the essence for those of our clients seeking to secure this rare high-grade, high denomination note. In EF–aUnc quality, this is undoubtedly one of the finest examples of the 1927 £5 Riddle/Heathershaw that we have offered in our 80 years in the industry, and it is sure to be snapped up immediately.

Whilst the mantra of ‘the higher the grade, the faster the growth’ is true across all areas of numismatics, the rule is particularly applicable in the world of Of all Australian predecimal notes, the highest predecimal banknotes. Illustrating the wisdom of denominations are the toughest to secure in top seeking out Australian predecimal notes in the grade – largely because of the relatively small upper echelons of quality, the catalogue values of number printed and the high face value. Throughout the entire predecimal period, £5 embodied significant notes graded from Extremely Fine to Uncirculated have increased rapidly in recent times. The 1927 £5 spending power, but this was especially the case Riddle/Heathershaw is a powerful case-in-point. during the depths of the Great Depression. With unemployment at over 30% at its worst, and the basic wage falling below £4 per week, it is obvious that most people would have found it unthinkable to stash a £5 or a £10 note away for posterity.

Too valuable to set aside…

The Riddle/Heathershaw £5 – soaring in value…

Rare – and rising in value… With so few issued, and most heavily circulated, lost or withdrawn from circulation by Treasury and destroyed, the number of pre-WWII high denomination banknotes remaining in premium quality today is infinitesimal. The natural consequence of the limited availability of superior grade notes such as the 1927 £5 Riddle/ Heathershaw in EF–aUnc is intense competition. With

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With great competition for the few available examples, the forces of supply and demand have seen an extraordinary rise in the value of the 1927 £5 Riddle/Heathershaw over the last decade and a half. Valued at $1,650 in 1995 in about Uncirculated quality, this crucial Depression Era note had soared to $5,000 by 2001. Whilst that rate of secondary market price-growth is undoubtedly impressive, the rise in value of the 1927 £5 Riddle/Heathershaw since the beginning of the new millennium has been breathtaking. Leaping to a catalogue value

Immediate action a must!

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Excessively rare Depression Era banknote – first issued exactly 85 years ago

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Stunning, rarely seen quality – in Extremely Fine to about Uncirculated condition

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Defined by powerful potential – jumped from $1,650 to $27,500 since 1995!

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With just one example available, immediate action is an absolute must

$19,500

1927 R42 £5 RIDDLE/HEATHERSHAW EF-aUnc AT359

Call our Rarities expert, David Jobson, on (02) 9299 4131


Rare in premium grade about Very Fine quality! One of the earliest banknotes of Australia’s first national currency system, the 1918 10/- Cerutty/Collins is among the nation’s most historic, most valuable legal tender issues. Bearing Australia’s second signature combination, this highly sought after type is very tough-to-find, regardless of the grade, and is exceedingly rare in the about Very Fine quality seen here. Distinguished by a ‘Half Sovereign’ overprint, the 1918 10/- Cerutty/ Collins was issued in low numbers to accommodate a small Australian population. Importantly, Australia’s lowest denomination note experienced much greater circulation than its higher denomination counterparts, and it was estimated by Treasury in the early 1920s that a 10/- had a life expectancy of just 14 months. As with all Australian predecimal notes, a substantial if unknown number of the 1918 10/- Cerutty/Collins have been lost or withdrawn from circulation and destroyed in the more than nine decades since issue, and it appears on the market infrequently The rarity of the type – especially in premium grade, as here – has naturally resulted in hot competition from both collectors and investors, and with increased demand and dwindling supply, a rising market value has been the natural result. A 1918 10/- Cerutty/Collins in Very Fine was worth $1,100 in 1995 – it now catalogues at $9,500! Whether driven by the immensely important history, or by the rarity and future potential, we advise you act immediately. We have just one example of the 1918 10/- Cerutty/Collins in stock, and, so rarely available to collectors, it is sure to be snapped up at super-speed.

$6,890

1918 R3B 10/CERUTTY/COLLINS about VF AT360

Depression Era rarity!

Issued in the days leading to the Great Depression, and rarely seen on the market, the 1927 £5 Kell/Heathershaw is hotly pursued under any circumstances. Virtually never offered in anything better than well circulated condition, this particular Kell/Heathershaw £5 note is in premium grade near Very Fine condition, and is among the finest we have handled. With the average weekly wage plummeting to well under £5 in the years after this note was first issued, a £5 note represented too much spending power for most people to blithely pop a few away for posterity. With Australian predecimal banknotes also

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having a relatively short life-span in circulation, and regularly withdrawn and destroyed by Treasury, it is no great shock that notes such as the 1927 £5 Kell/ Heathershaw are so rarely offered today. Indicative of this rarity, and of the ever-increasing demand for the earliest notes of the Australian predecimal series, the market value of the 1927 £5 Kell/Heathershaw has rocketed over recent times. Valued at $1,600 in 1995, this note now catalogues at $13,500! With our price well below the current market value, this is an excellent opportunity for just one of our clients to secure a note with true potential.

As demand for predecimal banknotes grows, examples in this premium grade condition become harder and harder to find. Whether the centrepiece of your Australian banknote collection or the heart of a diversified portfolio, the 1927 £5 Kell/Heathershaw in near Very Fine is a prime acquisition for collector and investor alike.

$9,750

1927 R40 £5 KELL/HEATHERSHAW near VF AT361

Call our Rarities expert, David Jobson, on (02) 9299 4131


Australia’s first $5 Star Note! Exceptionally rare in Unc quality…

Among the most sought after acquisitions in Australian banknote collecting, the 1967 Coombs/ Randall $5 Star Note was the first – and one of only two – Australian $5 Star Replacement Notes. Only printed for a single year, with the Coombs/ Randall signature combination very short-lived, this momentous early decimal note is an exceptionally rare, and extremely valuable, element of the Australian banknote series. Issued in the tiniest of numbers, it’s no surprise that, some 45 years after issue, the Coombs/Randall $5 Star stands as one of the rarest, most valuable issues of the entire Star Note series. The recognised rarity

of the type has translated into fierce competition for the few still available – especially those in premium grade. This, in turn, has naturally created strong market performance over the years. Today this note carries one of the highest catalogue values of any Australian Star Note in Uncirculated condition. Hotly pursued in any grade, and ever-increasingly scarce, the chance to own this note in pristine, Uncirculated condition does not come along every day. Those that have grasped the opportunity in the past should be applauded for their foresight, as the Coombs/ Randall $5 Star has enjoyed a meteoric rise. More than doubling in value across all grades since 1995, this note

in strictly Uncirculated quality has charged from $4,500 to a current catalogue value of $11,000. Seldom offered at any price, this is an outstanding opportunity for one of our clients to add this tremendously rare decimal banknote to his or her collection. With just the one magnificent Uncirculated quality 1967 $5 Coombs/Randall Star Replacement Note 1967 R203S $5 COOMBS/ available, however, the RANDALL STAR need for immediate REPLACEMENT NOTE Unc action is obvious.

$9,650 AT362

THE BRIGHTEST $1 STAR – as a rare Consecutive Pair! Australia’s second $1 Star Replacement Note, the one-year-only 1967 Coombs/Randall $1 Star is a key to the decimal banknote series. Rare and important, the chance to acquire this desirable note is thus a tantalising prospect under any circumstances. The opportunity to buy an aUnc–Unc Consecutive Pair is truly extraordinary! Keenly pursued for their history, rarity and market potential, Star Replacement Notes are among the most sought after issues across the spectrum of Australian numismatics. Seldom offered in any form, Star Replacement Notes are very rarely presented to collectors in Consecutive Pair format – and almost never in the exceptional quality presented here. Rising rapidly in value, and increasingly hard-to-find, this rare early decimal issue catalogued at $3,500 per note in 1995. Today, a single Coombs/Randall $1 Star Replacement Note in Unc is valued at $11,000! Whether ultimate collector acquisition or sensible portfolio diversification, the chance to obtain two sequential examples of this prestigious early decimal issue in aUnc–Unc represents a vital opportunity. With just one pair available, you must act with speed to have the chance to add one of the great rarities of the decimal series to your collection.

$16,900 1968 R72S $1 COOMBS/RANDALL STAR NOTE CONSECUTIVE PAIR aUnc-Unc AT363

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© 2012 – All rights reserved. Every Downies catalogue is made from paper that is a) sourced from sustainable forests, and b) treated with an environmentally-friendly bleaching process. All items offered are subject to being sold out prior to receipt of order. Banknotes may be photographed not at actual size. Some items in this magazine may not be immediately available from our retail outlets. This list cancels all previous direct selling lists. Prices shown are subject to change without notice. Prices may include GST.

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Call our Rarities expert, David Jobson, on (02) 9299 4131


Notable Notes - February 2012