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Bristol Pound prepares third birthday celebrations


James Barke


To celebrate three years since its launch, the city's very own local currency, the Bristol Pound, will be hosting a third birthday party at St Nick's Night Market on Friday September 18.

Back in 2012, the Bristol Pound was launched as way to encourage people to spend their money locally, support independent businesses and keep cash circulating within Bristol. Today, more than 800 different places accept the Bristol Pound, ranging from pubs and gift shops, to bicycle painters and pole dancing groups (yes, really).

Bristol wasn't the first place to introduce a local currency (Totnes, Lewes, Brixton and Stroud gave it a go first), but ours has now grown to become one of the biggest in the world.

This success is down partly to the enthusiasm of local traders, but is also a result of large organisations such as First Bus, Bristol Council and, more recently, Temple Meads Station getting involved. To date, the equivalent of around £800,000 has been exchanged in Bristol Pounds. 


The Bristol Pound's third birthday will be celebrated at St Nicholas Market with an evening of street food, live music and performers. Needless to say, there will also be plenty of opportunities to get your hands on the recently redesigned notes – and spend them too. You can check out some of the new designs in the image below.


Bristol Pound


Word of warning, though, for those of you with a wallet full of first edition Bristol Pound notes - these will be taken out of circulation shortly after the birthday celebrations, meaning the old designs can't be used after September 30

This is because the notes are legally considered as vouchers and therefore needed to be given an expiry date. However, first edition notes can be exchanged for new ones up until that date. 


Bristol Pound 3rd Birthday, Friday September 18. 5.30-9.30pm. St Nicholas Market, The Exchange, All Saints Lane, Bristol, BS1 1HT. 


Find more things to do in Bristol this week.  

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