James Wearmouth’s Things I Just Don’t Understand: 1 – The Bristol Pound

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Bristol Pound Logo
The Bristol Pound is an alternative currency accepted only in Bristol.

The Sterling Pound: I can spend that anywhere – sounds good to me! But wait! There’s another pound I can only spend in Bristol. What’s the point? I don’t understand the point of a pound which I can only spend in Bristol – it’s supposed to encourage shopping with small independents, so why allow national companies such as First Buses to accept them? Surely this just defeats the object?

Bristol Pound Members can now pay council tax to the City Council in Bristol Pounds through online Bristol Pound accounts. This can be done as one-off or as regular scheduled payments. Why? How does paying council tax in Bristol Pounds help the economy? The Bristol Pound was launched in September of 2012 and has been a so called “success”, well that’s what they claim on their website. Many cities from countries around the world are watching the progress of the city wide currency idea. Bristol is the only city in the world to have its own currency – if it was worth doing, wouldn’t others be doing it? There are one million “bristol pounds” now in circulation – yet I’ve never seen one! Any idea which can boost the Bristol economy is worth doing, but does this? I think that this idea is just a gimmick, but at least with my Bristol pound I can get 10% off a Bristol Pound T-Shirt.