Brighton has taken the first step towards creating its own currency with the launch of Goodmoney gift vouchers. Though it wasn’t the most rock’n’roll launch party SOURCE has ever been to, it’s great news for Brighton businesses.
At the time of the launch, 150 local companies had signed up to the scheme, accepting Goodmoney gift vouchers in exchange for their services or goods. The scheme, a Brighton-based social enterprise devised by Goodmoney CIC and backed by Caroline Lucas, aims to inject £1million into the local economy by 2020.
The evening started with people mingling, sampling the free Bison Beer, which went down well, and other local nibbles before the scheme was introduced by the enigmatic Mick Taylor, director of the Goodmoney group. Mick was followed by an impassioned Caroline Lucas, and both then presented awards to the talented young winners whose art is used on the voucher cases.
The main idea is that money stays in the local economy for longer, rather than going the way of the £20m spent each year on vouchers from highstreet chain stores. If vouchers expire, rather than all your money going straight into the purses of the big guys, it gets put into community based projects. For those accepting the vouchers there is a strong networking element to it – you can be sure that those with the vouchers will be passing their eyes over brands they may not have otherwise come across.
There is plenty to choose from already – food, DJ lessons, rock climbing and vintage clothes. Or beer.
Find more about the scheme by visiting the Goodmoney CIC site.
Wagner Hall, Thursday 24th September 2015
Words and photos by Ashley Laurence