Bristol Pound is a local currency, first launched in 2012. It is the UK’s most successful local currency, used by local businesses and individuals to buy goods and services, pay suppliers, energy bills and council taxes. It aims to create a more resilient and sustainable independent business sector in the city of Bristol, and in turn, to create a fairer and more inclusive local economy. It does this by trapping money spent in Bristol Pounds in Bristol, adding to a local circular economy instead of leaking away to distant head offices, far-flung supply chains and remote shareholders. Shortened supply chains also reduce the city’s carbon footprint, champion local businesses and help city high streets stay vibrant.
With some 1,500 individual members and 500 business members, it is the most prominent local currency in the UK. We offer both paper and electronic money, with online account management and an app with an integrated map to help people discover and support Bristol’s independent businesses.
Bristol Pound is committed to its ongoing development, harnessing technology and thinking creatively about new ways to help Bristol’s independent business sector. We have recently launched a pilot of our new zero% loans for business members. We are looking to improve our app and payment platform radically. Also, beyond that, we are developing ideas about how to offer an equity investment platform, to enable local people to invest in local businesses as well as community and social enterprises.