Bristol Pound to be accepted on First buses in city

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The Bristol pound is to be accepted by Bus operator First, a year after it was launched in the city

The Bristol pound is to be accepted by bus operator First, a year after it was launched in the city.

The currency was introduced last September to ensure money earned in the city is spent in local businesses.

First is thought to be the first bus company in the UK to sign up to a local currency scheme.

The firm's Paul Matthews said First was "delighted" to be involved in the project and hoped it would give it an "added level of visibility".

"We hope that in working with the organisers we can help to increase usage further, providing a welcome boost for the local economy at the same time," he added.

More than 600 Bristol companies have signed up to the currency, making it the UK's largest alternative to Sterling.

There is about £200,000 Bristol pounds in circulation.

'Stronger economy'

Founder Ciaran Mundy said: "We are very happy to work with First to encourage everyone in Bristol to use [the currency] and to get out of our cars and on the bus."

Mr Mundy said it helps in his aim for the currency to be used in daily transactions by everyone in Bristol "to create a fairer, stronger, happier, local economy".

Bristol Pound staff have partnered with First to run a number of consultations at its depots in Bristol and meet with bus drivers to explain more about the currency.

The currency comes in in £1, £5, £10 and £20 denominations. A Bristol pound is worth exactly £1 Sterling.

First will begin accepting the currency on its buses from Monday.

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