Help develop a local currency for Edinburgh!

Calling com­munity coun­cils, loc­al action groups, Transition groups, Development Trusts, ten­ants and res­id­ents asso­ci­ations, loc­al traders asso­ci­ations, vol­un­tary organ­isa­tions, hous­ing associations… 

Come and help intro­duce a loc­al cur­rency in Edinburgh!
Saturday 27th August 2.30 – 4.30pm
[NOT 22nd August, 7 – 9pm as stated earlier!]

Portobello Old Parish Church, Bellfield Street, Portobello EH15 2BP

After a suc­cess­ful pub­lic engage­ment event we are now ready to work in sev­er­al loc­al areas to lay the ground for the intro­duc­tion of thecur­rency. The coun­cil have agreed to devel­op a strategy to sup­port com­munity groups in their efforts to estab­lish an Edinburgh pound. We want to stress that the coun­cil are not provid­ing any fund­ing to this ini­ti­at­ive of Transition Edinburgh, PEDAL Portobello, Transition Edinburgh South, SEED, Greener Leith and Bridgend.

The pro­pos­al is for a ‘Euro style’ cur­rency which would have stand­ard ‘Edinburgh Pound’ fea­tures on one side, and a loc­al vari­ant on the oth­er e.g. A Portobello pound, or a Morningside pound…  Local pounds from dif­fer­ent areas will be useable in any par­ti­cip­at­ing shops around the city, but would also retain a sense of loc­al distinctiveness.

Next steps:
1. Work with loc­al action groups and organ­isa­tions who would like to take part in the scheme to set a strategy for enga­ging our loc­al shop­keep­ers, trades­people, key organ­isa­tions and the wider pub­lic.  


2. Research how best to imple­ment the scheme by con­tact­ing and learn­ing from oth­er loc­al cur­ren­cies. Including ask­ing them:
(i) Whether traders offered a 5% dis­count to users of the loc­al cur­rency and what impact that had?
(ii) How much leak­age there was (i.e. how many pounds were taken as souven­irs, effect­ively put­ting ‘free’ money into the system)?
(iii) How they man­aged to pro­tect their cur­rency from being copied?
(iv) Whether and how they involved their loc­al author­ity or oth­er large loc­al play­ers? (e.g. Bristol is aim­ing to enable Traders to be able to pay their Business rates with the Bristol Pound)
If you are will­ing to con­tact oth­er loc­al cur­ren­cies and research some of these ques­tions before the August meet­ing, let us know!

3. Explore the pos­sib­il­ity of intro­du­cing a par­al­lel elec­tron­ic cur­rencyfor easy pay­ments (Bristol are plan­ning on a sim based mobile phonecur­rency).

4. Examine wheth­er there are loc­al issues which could be used to help a loc­al cur­rency to take off in par­tic­u­lar parts of Edinburgh.
For example, in Morningside shop­pers and traders are very con­cerned about the pos­sib­il­ity of a new Sainsbury’s and so using a loc­al cur­rency could be a way of help­ing build sup­port for the loc­al eco­nomy. Meanwhile in Portobello, the fact that the Local ‘Porty Shopper’ bags — ‘Think Global, Shop Local’ — were snapped up so fast demon­strates that people are clearly want­ing to identi­fy with and sup­port loc­al traders.

Hope to see you there!

Cheers! Eva and Justin (for the Edinburgh Pound project)


Further resources:
Edinburgh Pound —
Brixton Pound —
Bristol Pound —
Time Article — ‘Tough times lead to loc­al cur­ren­cies’ —,9171,1908421,00.html
Worgl exper­i­ence in Austria in the 1930s —
BerkShares in Massachusetts since 2006 —
Local Money — How to make it hap­pen —


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