Lewes was the second town in Britain to issue transition town banknotes after Totnes. Since 2008, it has gradually become more prolific and is now issuing new designs annually. The currency is widely accepted throughout the town, and many people use it in the local market. The Pound group are actively involved in social initiatives; their latest, Donate-a-Drink, encourages customers at the Depot café to donate the cost of a coffee to the local foodbank. The Depot will, in turn, donate the equivalent amount in Lewes Pounds so visitors to the foodbank can have a treat. If one is looking for a model of a successful, sustained currency with truly noteworthy aims, Lewes has to be a place to examine.
Two of their notes have supported specific local enterprises (which have in their turn supported the initiative). Two others have supported particular local events. Details are included under the individual issues' descriptions. Collectors are hoping they will be kept happy with frequent, future designs.
Lewes notes share a common front, (since the first issue), featuring a picture of Lewes Castle, an image of Thomas Paine and a quotation of his; "We have it in our power to build the world anew". A resident of the town from 1768 to 1774, Paine was a political activist, one of the Founding Fathers of America, involved in the American Revolution, and also the French Revolution. His pamphlet, 'The Rights of Man' brought him into all manner of controversy. His views on empowering the populace, unpopular at the time, make him a logical choice for the face of the banknote.
One interesting feature about Lewes (as with Totnes), is their choice of using a L£21 note. This value is not only equivalent to 20 guineas in old money but also makes nice 21st birthday presents for special people!
£4.99 Regular Price
Quantity - Single or Pack of 10