Testimonial - Beast Clothing
Tell us a bit about your business. E.g. When and how did you start off?
We have been trading since 1987 in St. Nicholas market. We have also had a shop in Cheltenham Road since 2004.
Why did you get involved with the Bristol Pound?
"We joined at the beginning...initially because we loved the idea of locally generated wealth being recirculated around independent businesses in Bristol who pay their fair share of taxes. This seems much better than the money disappearing into large corporations who invariably dodge paying theirs."
"Also it was great to see someone finally doing something to help independent businesses."
How do you or your customers feel or behave when using £B compared to sterling?
"Customers love it - it makes them feel good about spending money, as they know it's having some positive effect. It's also great for us as we connect more with them through the conversations we have about it."
What’s TXT2PAY like?
"Brilliant ! It's quicker than credit/debit cards, much cheaper and fun to do."
How have your Bristol Pounds been re-spent or where do you plan to re-spend them?
"Many of the shops we and our staff use accept Bristol Pounds, so there's no shortage of places we can spend them. (We pay) Business Rates at the moment...some of our suppliers e.g. Tangent Books...(and) our Stall Rent in St. Nicholas Market can be paid in £B."
What’s the best thing that has happened to you & your business from joining?
"Turnover is up! The publicity associated with the Bristol Pound has brought us more customers, as it's focused people's attention on supporting independent local business. Oddly enough, most of these customers still use sterling most of the time, but that's okay as they're still spending more money with us than before."
What do you hope will happen as a result of Bristol people and businesses having their own currency?
"More people will give more thought to where they're spending their money and as a result the diverse character of shopping in Bristol will be preserved."
How do you help staff to make the most of your customers commitment to using £B?
"This is not difficult, as our staff are enthusiastic about the Bristol Pound, as are many of our customers, and most visitors from other cities and from and from abroad that we speak to understand instantly the principles behind the Bristol Pound and its benefits to the local economy.
Most of the scepticism we've encountered has come from the very people who would gain the most from taking part, i.e. traders who would be eligible but haven't signed up."