Published: 15th Apr 2014

As a new pilot attempts to join up the dots of community finance, Clare Goff asks whether the time is ripe for an alternative finance revolution  ‘Money is round and it rolls away’, a wise person once said. In our local economies a lot of money is rolling away, into the pockets of payday lenders, large finance and big business. Doorstep lenders prey on the vulnerable, sucking them into a lifetime of debt; detached and distant banks refuse loans to small and new businesses; money rolls out of local areas, trapping places in a spiral of poverty and inertia. But an alternative is brewing, a new finance that works at the neighbourhood level, joins up the dots in local economies and stops all that money from rolling away. It’s a local finance that includes ‘virtuous’ doorstep lenders, open local banks and local funding pots that circulate money around and within … (To read the full article, subscribe below)