One of a souvenir set of four Bristol Pounds, uncirculated, first print edition, issued in September 2012, by the Bristol Pound Community Interest Company (CIC). Expires September 30, 2015.

The Bristol Pound is an alternative currency, developed to boost the local economy of Bristol, England. Local businesses can sign up to the scheme. As well as using paper money, customers can open electronic accounts. The bank notes are not legal tender and are legally considered to be vouchers. Other British alternative currencies were used in Brixton, Lewes, Stroud and Totnes.

The bank notes were used in designs by local artists, with local content. The Bristol Pound website states: 'Each of the designs captures something of Bristol's character, celebrating its commitment to greener living, its cultural diversity, its creative spirit and its technological heritage.' The symbol for the Bristol Pound resembles a Pound Sterling symbol converted into the letter B.

The 1 Bristol Pound note features 'Bicycle' by Bristol illustrator Jethro Brice, and a contemporary design by Phil West.

Physical Description

Printed paper note in with two security features as part of the design. The colours are predominantly green.

Obverse Description

Main design features silhouettes of symbols of Bristol , such as buildings and animals.Two security features are superimposed on the design, in the shape of a round Bristol Pound symbol and a deer. In the left margin , 1/ONE/BRISTOL/ POUND, issuing details, serial number, expiry date, People of Bristol in script, pink Bristol Pound symbol with MONEY THAT STAYS IN BRISTOL around; gold and white box with serial number .On right margin, ARTWORK CONTRIBUTED/ BY PHIL WEST.

Reverse Description

A bicycle leaning on a tree with another tree in the backgound. A bird sits on the handlebar and a fox looks at the bird. In the left margin , 1 /ONE/BRISTOL/ POUND, and People of Bristol in script. At right , faint pink lines with phrases in tiny lettering OUR CITY OUR MONEY OUR FUTURE/ UNDERSTANDING THE NEED FOR CHANGE/ NURTURING GREEN OPEN SPACES. On right margin, ARTWORK CONTRIBUTED/ BY JETHRO BRICE.


Community or alternative currencies are not a new idea. Other British cities and overseas cities have produced them. The Bristol Pound has been promoted using social media, and even has an online shop. The intention of the currency is to promote local business, and to maintain the diversity and identity of the city. There is a desire for autonomy in the context of the economic downturn in Britain and the Eurozone generally.

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