Making Cash by Printing Money
Lewes banknotes are a tourist attraction, not a boost to the economy
One year, and 45,000 banknotes later, the Lewes Pound has been embraced by one group above all others. “Tourists come in and they’ll buy one for a pound,” said Alison Ridley, deputy manager of Bill’s grocery and cafe. “Sometimes they ask, ‘how much should I pay for one?’.”
The pound notes expired last month and have been reissued in denominations of £5, £10, and £21. With less than a fortnight until the final deadline, around 80 per cent of the old notes have not been returned.
Of course the local currency wasn't going to boost the local economy in the tofu-eating bicycling way they hoped, but it means thousands of of real pounds have been spent on useless bits of paper for their collectable nature. I can't see the Brixton Pound having quite the same "old British town and antique thing.”
And I'm not convinced that Darling's idea of printing lots more UK pounds will work in quite the same way either.