IT IS understood that Basingstoke head quartered De La Rue was involved in a concept design for the proposed new £10 banknote featuring novelist Jane Austen.

Both De La Rue, which is based in Jays Close, Viables, and The Bank of England, were unable to comment about who helped with the design.

Yesterday, the new Bank of England Governor, Mark Carney, was at a press conference at Chawton House, near Alton, where he confirmed that Jane Austen will appear on a forthcoming Bank of England banknote.

The 17 th century house is where the great author spent her last eight years of life and is now Jane Austen's House Museum The new look £10 note will go into circulation in 2017.

Jane Austen, who was born in Stevenon, just outside of Basingstoke, in 1775, will  be following Sir Winston Churchill, who will be appearing on the new £5 note in 2016.

Mr Carney said: “Jane Austen certainly merits a place in the select group of historical figures to appear on our banknotes.

“Her novels have an enduring and universal appeal and she is recognised as one of the greatest writers in English literature.

“As Austen joins Adam Smith, Boulton and Watt, and in future, Churchill, our notes will celebrate a diverse range of individuals who have contributed in a wide range of fields.”

Jane Austen, is famous the world over for her romantic fiction, set among the landed gentry.

She is one of the most widely read writers in English literature, whose works include, Sense and Sensibility and Emma.

The banknote will include a quote from Pride and Prejudice: “I declare after all there is no enjoyment like reading!”

This week, De La Rue held its annual general meeting, where the company's chairman Philip Rogerson, said trading for the first quarter had been in line with expectations.

He said: “First quarter performance has been satisfactory with good progress in delivering the higher £40million target annual cost reductions.

“This, together with the increased order book and a strong pipeline of order opportunities, which must of course be secured for delivery in the current year, supports the board's expectations for the full year.”

He said the group's 12 month order book at the end of first quarter was £242m.

De La Rue is the world's largest integrated commercial banknote printer, involved in the design or production of over 150 national currencies.

Among its customers is the Bank of England.

However, the lucrative Bank of England contract has been put out for tender.

If De La Rue was to lose the £1billion, 14-year contract, English banknotes could well end up being printed abroad in a couple of years.