Pearsall bank note collector shares story of woman featured on Australian 10 pound note


Neville Harlow (Pearsall) with 10 pound bank notes. Picture: Martin Kennealey
Neville Harlow (Pearsall) with 10 pound bank notes. Picture: Martin Kennealey

PEARSALL bank note collector Neville Harlow is sharing the story behind the woman featured on Australia’s 10 pound note with visitors to Wanneroo Library and Cultural Centre.

Mr Harlow, whose passion for collecting bank notes started as a child, has loaned his research on the “mystery woman” to the City of Wanneroo for a display at the centre.

He said the woman featured on the note, introduced in 1954, was Latvian immigrant Karina Nartiss, nee Zars, who was paid 10 guineas by the Commonwealth Bank to pose for photographs.

“Karina has never been publicly acknowledged for her contribution to the design of Australia’s last 10 pound note,” he said.

Mr Harlow said it was gave an insight into Australia’s past.

“Bank notes are a story of our history; they are primary storytellers,” he said.

City community and place director Fiona Hodges said the display was part of a call-out to the community to share their collections.

“The story behind the note is of interest because usually someone influential or regal appears on a bank note but the lady on this 10 pound note is an unknown Latvian model,” she said.

The display is available to view until the end of this month.