Category Archives: stories

Brixton Fund spotlight: Brixton Design Trail Pressgang

At our Brixton Fund event last month we funded six awesome local projects.

One of those was the Brixton Design Trail Pressgang, a work experience project run by local youth employment enterprise Raw Talent. Founder Abigail believes that work experience is too often an uninspiring activity, and she’s on a mission to change that!

The BDT Pressgang is an example of how a week of work experience can become a transformative and inspirational experience – one that ultimately meets Raw Talent’s aims of helping  disadvantaged young people overcome the barriers to finding fulfilling work.

Teaming up with Brixton Design Trail, students responded to a specific brief: to research, develop and produce content to support the Design Trail in the leadup to Design Week in September.

Working on a specific project with clear outcomes helps students engage more wholly in work experience and gives them the chance to accomplish a real piece of work, developed as a project through the stages from conception to completion.

As a fully functioning media team, students went out into the streets of Brixton to conduct research, meeting businesses, artists and residents and taking photos, filming segments and conducting interviews.

Students visited Pop Brixton, amongst other places, to talk to the businesses there about their participation in Design Week. To supplement the project work, they also took part in mini CV writing, social media and events management workshops run for free by Pop businesses through the Community Investment Scheme.

The students really enjoyed their week, especially working in teams, meeting new people and writing the stories about the Brixton Design Trail. Linda Quinn, editor of our esteemed local newspaper the Brixton Bugle, was impressed with the quality of writing and is planning a spread for the September edition. Watch this space!

Are you a Brixton business who can help share your skills to with local young people by offering some work experience? Or are you a young person interested in finding meaningful work experience or participating in employment & careers-related workshops? Get in touch with Lucy (lucy @ brixtonpound.org).

Brixton Design Trail is a collaborative creative network that provides a platform for showcasing a wealth of homegrown talent during the London Design Festival, which will take place 16-24th September.

 

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!

 

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!

B£ awarded a Nomination at the D&AD Awards

 

B£ 2nd edition notes incl. David Bowie, Luol Deng, Len Garrison and Violette Szabo

This Ain't Rock'n'Roll creations and nominees of the D&AD Awards 2012

This Ain’t Rock’n’Roll, aka the designers behind the Brixton Pound’s new look, were last night recognised at  the D&AD’s Awards for their creative talents in the design of the the Brixton Pound second edition’s notes.

In case you are wondering, the D&AD are the creative industry Oscars, and a Nomination is the equivalent of a Silver.

Indeed the awards attract entrants from all over the world, including household names  agencies/clients with mega-budgets, so  MASSIVE CONGRATULATIONS to This Ain’t Rock’n’Roll! This is no mean feast and we are absolutely thrilled for them!

And should you need yet another reason to love our notes, well there you have it: they are Oscars’ material, and they deserved to be seen.  Do circulate them, healthy glow guaranteed.

You can read more about the  D&AD awards here, here and here.

Have you heard about BRIXTON HEROES…

…the new Brixton Pound initiative? We want to engage members of our very diverse local community, to make their stories heard, and to involve them in the design of the second issue of the Brixton Pound notes.

Brixton is a multiethnic and multicultural community, with history and achievements to be proud of.

With BRIXTON HEROES we seek to counteract negative stereotypes, and to give Brixton’s local people and communities a stronger voice to talk about their experiences and what matters to them.

If successful, we will collect people’s stories about local unsung heroes and their thoughts about Brixton. We will talk with local business owners, young people, older people, carers, people with disabilities, activists, and other workers and residents who are striving to improve the wellbeing of the local area.

We will also produce a short film featuring interviews with these Brixton heroes, whose thoughts and stories will inform the design of a new issue of the local currency to be launched in autumn 2011.

So we are competing for a £5,000 grant through the Coop Join the Revolution award, but the decision as to which initiative should get the money is down to the public, therefore we need your vote!

Please click  here to cast your vote, and help us turn our BRIXTON HEROES idea  into a reality.

Deadline is midnight 29th May.

Thank you.

The Brixton Pound team

Christmas shopping in Brixton pounds

I’ve pledged to do all my christmas shopping this year in Brixton Pounds, so this Saturday I went off round Brixton to do just that. Not only did I manage it with ease, I also found a whole load of wonderful new shops I didn’t know existed until a few weeks ago. Many thanks to Wild CaperGruff and Tackleton’s Winter Menagerie, Bricolage, Brixton Cornercopia, No. 1 Village Bakeries, Remade in Brixton and Bookmongers for providing such great gifts. I also got my wrapping paper at Pound & Plus taking advantage of their 5% B£ discount.

You can watch a short film of the whole experience right here – I hope it inspires you to reject the west end, chain stores, supermarkets and big name brands and get down to Brixton to spend your money where it matters. You won’t be disappointed.

Extra special thanks to all the shopkeepers and staff for letting us film and being generous with your time, morleys for issuing my pounds, a massive thanks to Fiona Melville (19 Electric films), filmmaker extraordinaire, who filmed, produced and edited the video,  Simon Bishop for equipment loan, and lastly to Rosie’s deli and Mckinson costcutter on Acre Lane for providing the appropriate refreshments and allowing us to spend even more Brixton Pounds.