“Invigorating” Conference launches Guild of Independent Currencies

Seventy delegates representing currency schemes from around the country gathered together in Bristol last week for the UK’s first conference of independent currencies.

From the starting keynote speech by Transition Network founder Rob Hopkins, the conference was buzzing with the excitement of setting up of the Guild of Independent Currencies. An organisation to support this new wave independent currencies inspired by existing schemes in Totnes, Lewes, Brixton and Bristol.

Attendee Professor Joanna Grey wrote “I wanted to let you know how invigorating, fascinating and affirming I found your currency conference.”

The first day also included presentations were made by many of the currency projects who attended, these included Exeter, Cardiff, Taunton, Brixton, Lewes, Southampton, Kingston, Brighton, Grand Union Canal, Liverpool, Totnes and even Madison in Wisconsin.

Also unveiled was the Bristol Pound’s latest project, supported by InnovateUK, to help set up new independent currencies and incorporate them into a supportive network where smaller schemes can work together and exchange between them.

“My feet have not touched the ground since I got back to Alderney (Channel Islands).  The whole Conference from my point of view was an incredible success.  It inspired, it informed and I don’t think there is now any turning back.” said Tony Haywood from Aldernay.

For the second day, delegates participated in a series of practical workshops run by the Bristol Pound team covering various topics related to setting up a new currency.

Graham Woodruff, Technical Director for Bristol Pound who organised the event said “We were all blown away by the enthusiasm of all the attendees, and since the conference closed we are still being contacted every day by new groups springing up in the UK and beyond who want to set up currencies to support their own local businesses and communities.”

The next conference is planned for Autumn next year.

Full details and content from the conference can be found here