There’s no denying it: ‘tis the festive season. And for many of us that means getting gifts for loved ones and gathering goodies to enjoy over the festive period. Bristol’s streets are a-buzzing with merriment.
There’s something you can do to make the season of gift-buying and goodie-gathering a whole heap more fun for you, better for Bristol AND the global economy.
Use Bristol Pounds!
Take up the challenge and spread the love this season. Switch that Sterling for beautiful Bristol Pounds, then when you go spend it you’ll be building and protecting what we all love about Bristol, and helping make our city fairer, greener and more vibrant.
Here at Bristol Pound HQ we want to make this as easy as possible for everyone so we’ve put together 5 ways to help you be a hero this Christmas. I’ve added links, so if you like what you see, give it a click to find out more:
The Bristol Pound advent calendar. We’re putting together a giant advent calendar and popping it in the St Nicks Market foyer. Each day, we’ll open the next door to reveal a special deal for Bristol Pound users to help you with your shopping! What’s that? You won’t be able to join us in the St Nick’s foyer every morning throughout December? Well okay, we’ll post it up on social media each morning too! Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter to keep up-to-date.
The Bristol Pound Christmas market. We’re arranging a day of festivity on the 10th December at the Bristol Energy Hub on the waterfront. We’ll have: local craft and produce stalls; live music; free mince pies; Caring at Christmas are doing a wrapping service; you can win a Real Economy hamper; you can pick up the latest Bristol Pound business map and you can find out more about all the things you can do with Bristol Pounds (I can guarantee you don’t know all the things you can do with Bristol Pounds!). Plus, we’re right next to the Harbourside Market, where plenty of folk take the Bristol Pound. More info here.
Our new Bristol Pound Map of central Bristol – more detailed than ever, stretching from Temple Meads to the Grain Barge and from Wapping Wharf to the Bear Pit, you’ll find 128 shops, pubs, cafes, hair dressers, homeware stores, florists, and much, much more. We’ll be handing them out at the market, but also sending one out to every Bristol Pound member.
Indies in Bristol – a brand-new, city-wide event to celebrate Bristol’s amazing independent businesses and encourage Bristolians to shop local for Christmas. The main hub is in the Station courtyard (The Old Fire Station) in the city centre, where a central traders market of gifts, street food and a bar will be based. We’ll have a Bristol Pound ‘bank’ at the entrance of the event for your to switch to Bristol Pounds. Plus, we’re also doing a talk at 12.45. See you there! More info here.
Bristol Pound Trail – as part of the Indies in Bristol event, we’ve put together a pretty special little trail for you to follow – it’s a neat little trip in and around St Nick’s Market. Start at Beast Clothing to pick up your Bristol Pounds (they’re a ‘cash point’) – you can switch Sterling notes, pay on card or withdraw from your Bristol Pound account. Then visit a bunch of businesses waiting to give you discounts and offers if you use Bristol Pounds! More info here.
It’s easier than ever to do the Bristol Pound Christmas Challenge this year – so let’s change our money, change the world and have ourselves a jolly good time doing it.
That’s right, Bristol is now the first city to have both its own money and its own energy company!
It gets better: Bristol Energy is a force for social good, a gas and electricity company that will reinvest its profits straight back into the city, supporting essential services and local communities. It’s the first of its kind in the South West. We’re chuffed to bits to come together with Bristol Energy and work to keep money circulating locally, protecting Bristol jobs and creating a fairer, greener local economy.
Peter Haigh, Managing Director of Bristol Energy, had this to say:
“We believe energy companies have the power to make a positive difference. If you pay your bills with Bristol Energy, your money doesn’t just disappear into the pockets of private shareholders, it will help us to support your city. As a Bristol-born company we’re very proud to offer our customers the chance to pay in Bristol Pounds, helping even more of the money made in the city, stay local to the city.”
So, now you can pay for Bristol Energy using Bristol Pounds. But it gets even better than that. When you switch electric and gas quoting BPOUND001, Bristol Energy will give you £B20 and give us £B10! (Or £B10 for you and £B5 for us for one fuel)
Thriving Bristol based promotional staffing agency is the latest business to accept the Bristol pound. The Keynsham based agency registered with the Bristol pound at the beginning of this month as part of a focus to give back to the Bristol community.
Varii is a young business which started in 2014 through the support of Prince’s Trust Bristol. Since launching, the agency has provided promotion and event staff to a number of well-known brands within Bristol and the surrounding areas, including Bristol Credit Union, which provides fairer banking for local people, and Bristol Leaflet Delivery.
Simon Porter, Managing Director at Varii says, “the Bristol Pound is a great way to support our exciting business sector. Bristol is really unique; it’s vibrant, creative and has a strong sense of community, which is sometimes lost in large cities. We’ve got our roots here, and it’s important that we take steps to help support independent businesses and the local communities they serve.”
To celebrate Varii’s commitment to the Bristol Pound, they have agreed to provide a 10% discount on all bookings paid using Bristol Pounds.
Additionally, if you’re based in Bristol and you would like to become part of their promotions and events team then you can register with them directly through their website.
Getting your hands on tasty, locally-produced food can be tough when you’re surrounded by high streets strewn with supermarkets.
But now there is a way to get great quality, fairly priced food in your local area. It’s all delivered for free and you become part of a community too.
That’s the idea behind Real Economy – a project originally set up by the Bristol Pound but now ploughing it’s own furrow across the city. Let this intro video do the talking:
Steph, the coordinator of Real Economy, explains:
“Real Economy is an exciting way to buy food and drink, and a great way to spend Bristol Pounds. Our online platform lets you buy food directly from local producers, helping to support local farmers, and since our producers are paid in Bristol Pounds, your money continues to circulate in the local economy.”
“We have food clubs all across the city. You simply register with your local group, place your online order and we deliver to your local collection point. Our food clubs are also a great way to meet new people and build community around food.”
Whether you’re launching a new product, moving location or holding a special event – let the Bristol Pound team know so we can share your good news.
Bristol Pound users tell us they want to know more about the local, independent businesses who accept the Bristol Pound. They also want to discover new places and ways to spend their Bristol Pounds.
That’s why we want to bring together businesses who accept the local currency and the people who want to spend them. To do that, we want to share more of your news and the stories that make your business different.
We’ve set up an email address so you can send us the latest info – it could be a press release, an invite, a picture or just the details. Send them to firstname.lastname@example.org. Add the email address to your mailing list or tweet us @bristolpound with a link.
We can’t promise to share everything but we will get out as much as possible.
Bristol is a hotbed of alternative ways of doing things – that includes finance for small and medium size businesses. Bristol Pound members are coming together to hear how they can benefit from using the many ethical finance options available in the city – and you’re invited.
What: Introduction to Ethical Finance for Small & Medium Size Businesses When: Wednesday 8 June, 10am – 1pm Where: Tobacco Factory, Raleigh Rd, Bristol, BS3 1TF
Bristol Pound are working with the city’s sustainability champions, Go Green, for this morning workshop at the Tobacco Factory to help you join the dots between your company’s values and the financial services you use.
Wren Aigaki-Lander – Within People
Alex Higgins – Triodos Bank
Steve Clarke – Bristol Pound
Vicki Woolley – Bristol Green Capital Partnership
Jack Farmer – LettUs Grow
Enjoy a tasty, sustainably sourced breakfast with like-minded local businesses and learn how you can align ethical finance with your company’s purpose.
Hear how values are integral to decision making at Triodos Bank.
Find out how Bristol Pound’s new Prospects Network for SMEs can benefit you.
Get practical tips to help you identify the positive difference your company’s financial choices can make.
Investigate if crowdfunding could suit your business.
This is a great opportunity to complement your business’ ethos with your finances – and reap the benefits of doing so. Discounted places are available for Bristol Pound members but they’re limited so book now:
We speak to our network of over 800 local, independent businesses every day and we know that competing with the marketing budgets of large businesses can be a tall ask. Get Set for Growth’s expert team will deliver a practical and insightful workshop to help you market and grow your business.
This is a Bristol Pound members-only event so it will be an excellent opportunity to mingle with other like-minded businesses, share challenges and create opportunities.
What’s planned on the day
9.15 Registration, refreshments and networking
9.45 Introductions and welcomes – Emily Hazell, Partnership Manager, Bristol Pound
10.00 Growing your Local Business – Fiona Fraser, Marketing Advisor, Get Set for Growth
Introducing Get Set for Growth
Marketing for Growth
Break out group & discussion
11.30 Q&A and feedback
11.45 End and networking
Get Set for Growth is a specialist service offering funded marketing and finance expertise to ambitious businesses with the potential to grow, thanks to the Regional Growth Fund. Growing your business requires money and customers: Get Set for Growth is a unique service that helps you get both through a combination of finance and marketing expertise. The West of England team have been live in Bristol for just over 6 months and have recently celebrated the enrolment of their 200th client.
The Tube Diner is a retro Airstream café based in the vibrant Paintworks creative quarter. They serve up delicious Buttermilk Pancakes, Breakfasts, Burgers, Chilli Dogs and scrumptious daily specials to hungry artists and families.
“Being a Bristol Pound Cash Point helps bring in new customers” explains Charlie, the friendly face behind Tube Diner. “It has increased footfall, especially on weekends.” They’re seeing more families and tourists through the door and enjoy the bustle of a busy weekend.
“Local families who frequent our Diner seem to be the most active users of the Bristol Pound. We feel that it’s important to support the Bristol Pound and it’s nice to be able to offer them to our customers.”
Anyone can exchange sterling for paper Bristol Pounds at the Tube Diner on the Bath Road – and Charlie’s a big fan of Bristol’s local currency.
“Bristol is a quirky, eccentric city and the Bristol Pound fits in nicely with that. We feel that Bristol Pounds work well with Bristol and its forward thinking approach.”
“We love the design of the paper £B1. The older generations refer back to the bygone era when £1 sterling notes were commonly used. It’s a great novelty!”
The Tube Diner spends Bristol Pounds by buying stock from other local business. They also reward themselves with a well-earned pint at a local bar who accepts them too!
We’re also offering Bristol’s SMEs free advice and guidance on a range of hot topics. Slots are available between 11-2pm where you will be able to get a free 15-minute one-to-one session with one of the experienced leadership team at the Bristol Pound. Session include:
1. Building strong strategic partnerships
2. Strategic legal advice
3. Building local supply chains
4. Developing your social media
We expect to be very busy on the day so make sure you book in advance. Just email email@example.com with your name and number. Or, just pop by and chat to the team on the day.
The Prospects Network
We’ll be giving delegates a sneek peek of the new service, called the Prospects Network, which will help Bristol’s small and medium sized businesses do more business. If you can’t wait until the 8th March, find out more here: www.prospectsnetwork.org
See you there
Doors open at 10am and over 500 delegates are expected to meet the the 80 plus businesses exhibiting at the conference centre at Ashton Gate. Tickets for delegates are free.
Are you passionate about the Bristol Pound? Could you represent the views of individual or business members?
The Bristol Pound Community Interest Company has a board of directors who set the direction and shape the development of the Bristol Pound. Two board positions are reserved for member representatives – one representing individuals and one representing businesses.
Could you be Bristol Pound’s individual member or business member representative? Find out more details and apply:
This is a great opportunity to help make the Bristol Pound even stronger, developing the future direction of the Bristol Pound and the wider work of the Community Interest Company. You should be a keen user of the Bristol Pound and ready to engage with others to represent their views.
Both roles will be elected at the Annual Gathering of members on Tuesday 3 November for a period of two years. Board meetings happen every two months in Bristol city centre.
Deadline for initial applications is 12 noon on 30 October.
Bristol Pound users from across the city are coming together to discuss the future of the Bristol Pound, and elect their representatives, at the Annual Gathering on Tue 3 Nov at Hamilton House, Stokes Croft. There are still places available. Book your free ticket now: http://bristolpound.org/events?id=135