Wednesday, 19 September 2012

Poond for poond

So Bristol has launched its own currency, the Bristol pound (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-bristol-19627592) which has been pegged to sterling for valuation purposes. It sounds quirky but the reasoning is sensible, even sound (as a pound?). Local businesses (more than 350 it seems) have signed up to accept the currency which has been designed to keep money in the local economy. As it's not legal tender elsewhere the Bristol pounds can only be spent in establishments that have agreed to take it. One of the ideas is that local businesses (such as coffee shops, for example) will use the local currency to buy stock from local suppliers thereby creating a virtuous circle of local supply and demand.

Time will tell whether it takes off, but similar schemes in Germany have proved quite successful. In this era of increased focus on localism and with our own MP calling for a Bank of Northumberland it is certainly an idea worth thinking about here.

Only what would we call it? The Northumbrian poond, perhaps? Answers on a postcard please. Better still, use the comment box below to suggest ideas or otherwise discuss this issue.

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