Fifty more businesses sign up to Bristol Pound
The success of the Bristol Pound launch yesterday has prompted more than 50 further businesses to sign up to the scheme, organisers have announced.
Little more than 24 hours after the Bristol Pound went live, a flurry of between 50 and 60 additional businesses have applied to take part, bringing the total to more than 350.
The list of businesses signed up to the scheme, which seeks to give a boost to the city’s independent traders, includes clothing shops, a plumber, bicycle stores and a host of bars and restaurants.
At the time of publication Bristol Pound had not yet collated the full list of additional businesses that have signed up.
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Jayne Marshall, Shop’s co-director, told This is Bristol: “We heard about the idea a few months ago and we’ve been following it with interest, and seeing what was going to happen.
“The whole launch was so exciting and it gave us the final impetus to join up.
“We hope it will increase trade but we don’t think we will rely on that. We mainly hope it will raise the profile.
“Also, we’re in Christmas Steps and in the area a lot of people have signed up, so hopefully it will boost trade around here generally.”
Reflecting on yesterday’s launch, Ms Marshall said: “It was so exciting. I have lived here for 13 years and I just feel so Bristolian.
“I overheard someone yesterday say ‘Bristol is brilliant’ and I felt a real sense of civic pride.”
Ciaran Mundy, director of the Bristol Pound CIC, agreed the success of the launch may have helped convince other businesses to sign up. “I think when people see that other people are also interested it helps,” he said.
“It does require a collective ‘yes’, it’s not something only one business can do on their own. You need to know people are on board.”
The co-owner of movie rental store 20th Century Flicks echoed this, saying yesterday’s launch had most likely changed the opinion of some hesitant business-owners.
Dave Taylor, whose store signed up to the Bristol Pound in December 2011, said: “There were a lot of nice people in St Nicks last night [for the Bristol Pound launch Night Market], and I was talking to some of them about it and many of them thought it would be a lot of extra work, but then they realised ‘oh, that doesn’t sound that scary’.
“I think it put a lot of people’s minds at rest. You just need a separate column in the till, and we round them up in one go and take them down to the Credit Union.
“There’s also a bit of goodwill there, and that makes up for it”.
Bristol Pound CIC director Mr Mundy said the team may have to re-evaluate their target of signing up 1,000 businesses by the end of the year if the run of success continues: “We may have to be more ambitious,” he said.
“We couldn’t have asked for better”.
Read more about the Bristol Pound here.