Category Archives: e-currency

What will blockchain mean for communities and the Brixton Pound?

Blockchain, the Brixton Pound and activism

Discover and discuss what the blockchain could mean for Brixton, community activism and the Brixton Pound. Blockchain promises a lot, but what is it, and what impact could it have socially and economically? Can it foster inclusion—and what will it mean for those who don’t participate?

Guy Davies, Blockchain Consultant for Blockpass IDN will share his experience of navigating the exploding blockchain ecosystem, and what mass adoption might mean for us all.

There will follow an open session chaired by the Brixton Pound on how blockchain might be adopted and positively applied in our community.

How to get tickets

Tickets are free for this event. You can get them via Eventbrite.

Brixton Design Trail

Designing Inclusion is part of a week of free radical, design- and Brixton-focused events called Brixton Design Trail 2018.

Important changes to paying by text using Brixton Pounds

From the end of August 2018, we have retired the ability to pay by text in Brixton Pounds as we explore other innovative ways of paying with local currency. The paper Brixton Pounds remain a great way of boosting our local economy and strengthening our community.

If you are a business or individual who opened a pay-by-text account in the past, we wanted to say a huge thank you for your support. It’s been so important for us. We have sent emails to everyone with an account to let them know next steps. Please email madeleine@brixtonpound.org if you’d like us to send it again.

Every week, our menu of donated ingredients ensures we save 65kgs of food from landfill.

You can use our paper currency in many shops and restaurants in and around Brixton, including the Brixton Pound Cafe. We know it encourages local trade, maintains the diversity of the high street and sustains pride in Brixton.

We rely on the support of people like you to continue our progressive work. Whether it’s eating a delicious pay-what-you-can lunch made from surplus food, hiring space or taking part in low-cost reiki, yoga, film nights or supper clubs, your involvement in our work is hugely beneficial. We will be consulting the wider community when we develop our new payment platform. Thank you once again and we look forward to seeing you at the cafe very soon.

#yourpound: Celebration – Our 4th Birthday!

Doesn’t time fly! The Brixton Pound will be four years old at the end of September and we’d like you all to come and celebrate with us. Our existence has been marked by ever-increasing growth in the currency, as well as a commitment to innovation which makes us one of the most successful local currencies in the UK.

Four years and four great reasons to celebrate the Brixton Pound

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1) We are the first local currency in an urban area in the UK (and London!)

2) We are the first local currency to introduce an electronic pay-by-text version

3) We are the first local currency to launch a business rates scheme, allowing local businesses to pay their council tax in Brixton Pounds

4) We are the first local currency to pilot payroll local, which allows all council employees (and other businesses too) to receive part of their salary in Brixton Pounds.

None of this would have been without the ongoing commitment of local businesses, the loyalty of our users, and the enthusiasm of our supporters in Brixton and beyond. To say thank you and to mark four years of keeping Brixton’s economy vibrant, we are inviting you all to join us on Thursday 19 September from 6.30pm at the wonderful Seven at Brixton in Market Row. For early arrivals we’ll greet you with a complimentary glass of sangria, and we’ll also be rewarding our top 3 pay-by-text users, as well as giving out prizes.

It will also be a chance for you to hear about how the Brixton Pound is going, and find out a bit more about local currencies around the world – which is convenient as 16-20 September is International Local Currencies Week!

Get the date in your diary, let your friends know and be sure to RSVP – space is limited!

Here is a short slideshow celebrating 4 incredible years!

B£ Birthday Slideshow from Brixton Pound on Vimeo.

 

 

#yourpound – Meet the Trader: Kaff Bar

This week we’re back to our meet the trader blogs and we have a very special business to write about…

If you’ve not yet visited Kaff Bar, you’re missing out! Kaff Bar is a hidden gem on Atlantic road. During the day it offers a welcoming and relaxed environment to chill, grab coffee and cake or a tasty lunch. The cakes are made locally and the food comes from local suppliers. There are a selection of books you can read and newspapers to read on weekends. We often find it to be the perfect place to have meetings or work on projects using their free wifi.

IMG_2519You might bump into Steve (pictured) who is the owner and manager. He or other members of staff can introduce you to a well-chosen selection of creative cocktails, beers, ciders and wines. We would recommend trying the Brixton Mule (white rum, local fresh ginger beer and lime juice) … its delicious and is available at the bargain price of £3 throughout the day! The cocktail menu has the shape of a deck of cards and your drinks may come from a jam jar, a mug, a soup can or even a milk bottle!

The entire atmosphere at the Kaff Bar is charming and welcoming: the unique wall paintings, the large vintage sofas, and the stage with the piano make the bar the perfect place to meet friends, have drinks and listen to good music.

Kaff Bar hosts regular events including ‘Meet Brixton’ arranged by the Brixton Blog and it also arranges nights with top local DJ’s, Bingo evenings and the Cake Club Cabaret (we can’t tell you more about it as the first rule of Cake Club is: ‘You don’t talk about Cake Club!’ – you’ll have to find out for yourself!).

So, what are you waiting for? Use your B£e to support the Kaff Bar. Make a special effort to support one of Brixton’s finest independent businesses this bank holiday weekend!

And remember to let us know what you think on Twitter… use the hash-tag: #yourpound!

#Yourpound – Meet the Trader: Satay Bar

Although we’re approaching the end of May it feels like it could be the middle of winter! Let’s hope the weather improves for ‘Shop Local’ day which getting closer. We hope that you’ve got the date in your diary and will be supporting Brixton’s local traders on the day. Remember you can increase your spending power by 10% by using B£ pay-by-text which is now accepted at 122 local businesses with more coming on board every week. Don’t be caught unprepared! Top up you pay-by-text account before the 15th June!

Now for this week’s blog…

Do you have a special event coming up? Are you looking for a good place to go for drinks before (or after!) going to the cinema? Or are just looking for somewhere to grab lunch during the week? Check out the wonderful Satay Bar. It is in the heart of Brixton, next door to the Ritzy.

satayday-copySatay Bar is a cocktail bar and restaurant at the start of Coldharbour Lane. It was founded in 1996 by a local entrepreneur. Like the other businesses we’ve featured over the past few weeks (Healthy Eaters and the House of Bottles), it is one of Brixton’s more established businesses that oozes sophistication, great food and friendly staff. Most Brixtonites will know it well… and for Brixton tourists ,don’t just take our word for it, check out Trip Adivsor … it has great reviews!

The restaurant menu ranges from Indonesian, Malaysian, Thai, Singaporean, Japanese and Chinese food. You can have the complete Pan Asian experience together with an interesting range of cocktails.  The venue is great too! We really enjoyed the Brixton Pound social we held there there last year and regulary have lunch there. In fact, here is a photo from lunch today!

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So, don’t wait until 15th of June, go and have a drink or lunch at Satay Bar, and use your Brixton Pounds. Let us know the food you tried and what you think on Twitter (#yourpound).

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Payroll Local: UK first for local currencies

For the first time next month some Lambeth Council employees will be part paid in Brixton Pounds. Back in June we announced plans for its launch and we’re excited to say that the scheme is now live! The scheme gives all Lambeth Council employees the chance of receiving a portion of their salary in electronic Brixton Pounds (B£e).

Employees can then spend their B£e with local, independent businesses or donate to local charities and social enterprises. Employees who wish to be part of the scheme will receive an additional 10% on the proportion of salary they put into their online B£ account.

Over 120 members of staff have already pledged to receive a portion of their salary in Brixton Pounds, which is excellent news for local, independent businesses who are likely to see increased trade as a result. It is also great news for our community, as more money will stick to Brixton, directly benefiting local residents. That’s not all! The scheme will offer a convenient way to donate to local charities, social enterprises and community groups that may not be reached by corporate payroll giving schemes. Details of the charities involved can be found here.

If you work for Lambeth Council and would like a portion of your salary in Brixton Pounds, please sign up here. Detailed questions and answers can be found here however if there is anything else you would like to know, please email us on info@brixtonpound.org.

We’re grateful for funding from Nesta from their innovation in giving fund without which this project would not have happened.

Once again, this is a U.K. first. Something that Brixton can be really proud of. If you’re not yet using Brixton Pounds, there couldn’t be a more exciting time to get on board. There are now 92 businesses using pay-by-text. Open an account today!

 

Local energy, local people, local money

Earlier this year we wrote about the launch of Brixton Energy Solar 1. The good news is that the project has been even more successful than was hoped for. The solar panels have generated more electricity than expected.

Brixton Energy Solar 1: The Brixton Energy team at Elmore House – before and after photo; January 2012 and April 2012. Photo credit: Tim Mitchell http://www.timmitchell.co.uk/

Following on from the success, the fabulous team at Brixton Energy have now launched their second 2nd share offer. This will see the installation of 45kW of solar panels on the roofs of the Loughborough Estate in Brixton. The project will be 100% community owned giving local investors a share of the profits, with the remaining profit created being used to help address fuel poverty in Brixton through the Community Energy Efficiency Fund, right across the 20 year life span of the project.

The exciting thing is that this time round you’re able to buy shares and receive returns in Brixton Energy Solar 2 in Brixton Pounds. Local energy, paid for by local investors, using local money! We believe this is another U.K. first! Simply read the relevant documentation, complete and send the application form and make a B£e pay-by-text payment to brixtonenergy.

Brixton Energy Solar 2 site. Five Styles Gardens flats.

Co-founder and project manager of Brixton Energy, Agamemnon Otero, said “This is a true community project that has been enabled through the donation of over 1000 hours time invested by a variety of local people who are committed to a clean energy future. It’s great to see the launch of Brixton Energy Solar 2 and the continued support and commitment from local people. Pioneering inner-city co-operatively owned renewable energy projects has been challenging, but we are proving that with the right skills, dedication and commitment, we can all take steps to make clean energy a reality, and we hope other community groups across the UK will be inspired to take action. We want to make Brixton Energy a shining example of inner city community resilience for the next 20 years”.

Brixton really is at the forefront of sustainability innovation in the U.K. Be part of the revolution and invest in Brixton Energy Solar 2!

Pempamsie – the gem on Brixton Hill

This week we’re featuring a little gem on Brixton Hill that has been trading for 19 years – Pempamsie. Pempamsie which means ‘unity is strength’ sell a wide variety of products. From black interest books to natural beauty and health products, home furnishings and jewellery it would be difficult to visit without something taking your fancy!

Watch Basil tell you a little about his wonderful business.

Pempamsie also specialize in picture framing – in fact they framed some old Brixton Pound notes for us a few weeks ago and did an incredible job!

So whether you’re looking for a stylist gift or a treat for yourself, top up your pay-by-text account and visit this little gem.

Pempamsie are open Monday to Saturday 10am – 7pm.

 

 

Business Rates are live!

Brixton Pound businesses are now able to pay their business rates to Lambeth Council using electronic Brixton Pounds. This will give local independent businesses an additional way to spend their B£e balance. The first business to do this was Casa Morita . Watch the short video of Sarahgwen talking about her business and about the Brixton Pound.

We’re excited to be the first local currency in the U.K. to be accepted by the council in payment for business rates. Thank you to Lambeth Council for working with us to make this possible!

Keep an eye out for more exciting announcements in the near future!

Payroll Local to launch in September!

Today we announced a new way for Lambeth Council’s 3,000 staff to support their local community – Payroll Local will launch this autumn. Payroll local is a scheme that will allow all Lambeth Council employees to receive a small portion of their salary in electronic Brixton Pounds (B£e). They can then spend their B£e with local, independent businesses or donate to local charities and social enterprises. Employees who wish to be part of the scheme will receive an additional 10% on the proportion of salary they put into their online B£ account.

Derrick Anderson (pictured), Chief Executive of Lambeth Council, has already committed to receiving part of his salary in B£es.

This is excellent news for local, independent, Brixton businesses who are likely to see increased trade as a result. It is also great news for our community, as more money will stick to Brixton, directly benefiting local residents. In additon, the scheme will offer a convenient way to donate to local charities, social enterprises and community groups that may not be reached by corporate payroll giving schemes.

The Brixton Pound’s managing director Simon Woolf commented “Payroll Local is one of a number of innovative schemes that we’re launching this year – It’s vital for the Brixton Pound’s ongoing success that we don’t stand still. We’re absolutely delighted to have support from Lambeth Council at the highest level, as they are one of the most important financial players in our community.

You can find out more about Payroll Local by watching this short video or by checking out our frequently asked questions page. Note that the video was put together a few months ago and there are now 72 businesses accepting pay-by-text, with more joining the scheme every week!