A FIVE pound note issued two hundred years ago when Salisbury printed its own money is set to fetch up to £350 at auction.

The valuable black and white note is emblazoned with the words ‘Salisbury & Shaftesbury Bank’ and features an image of the cathedral.

It was issued by the short-lived Salisbury & Shaftesbury Bank on October 2, 1809, four years after the Battle of Trafalgar and the death of Lord Nelson and four years before Jane Austen published Pride and Prejudice.

The Salisbury and Shaftesbury Bank started some time before 1790, but went bust - like so many provincial banks of that era - in 1810.

The bank was owned by three local businessmen, George Wyndham - whose signature appears in the bottom right hand corner of the note - and his partners, Mr Bowles and Mr Ogden.

The note will be auctioned by Spink Bloomsbury, London, on April 14, when it is expected to sell for between £250 and £350.

Spink say that it is in "very fine" condition and that it is "scarce in this condition."

In 2004 two Salisbury and Shaftesbury banknotes sold for a total of £390. An 1810 one pound note sold for £110,while an 1810 ten pound note fetched £280.

Salisbury had several privately-owned banks in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries.

The Sarum City Bank - which started before 1797 - also folded in 1810, while the Salisbury Bank, launched in 1811 by three friends named Brodie, Dowding and Luxford, flourished until 1847,when it, too, went bust.

The most successful of the Salisbury banks was Salisbury Old Bank, which was founded by the Pinckney brothers in 1859 and which flourished until 1897,when it was taken over by the Wiltshire & Dorsetshire Banking Company, which itself was taken over by Lloyds Bank in 1914.

Barnaby Faull, head of the banknotes department at Spink, said: “All towns and cities in England used to issue their own banknotes. Merchants would get together and start up their own banks, but their notes, which were like IOUs, could only be used locally. When these local banks, like Salisbury's, went bust their notes became completely worthless.”

In the late 1700s and early 1800s there were hundreds of privately-owned banks throughout England and Wales, all printing their own money, because in those days - before motorways and security firms - it was too difficult and dangerous to bring in big quantities of cash from London.