Pudsey Lottery marks first anniversary as its 'Pudsey Pound' gives £11,000 lifeline to businesses

An innovative lottery in Leeds is marking its first anniversary as it continues to throw a lifeline to local businesses.

Sunday, 11th July 2021, 4:45 am

The Pudsey Lottery was set up last July as the high street began to reopen following the first lockdown restrictions.

Run by the Pudsey Business Network Forum, the initiative pays winners in 'Pudsey Pounds' which can be spent at more than 90 businesses in the market town.

More than £11,000 has now gone into the local economy since the lottery's launch, helping businesses hit by the Covid-19 pandemic and encouraging people to shop local.

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The lottery's first anniversary draw in Pudsey Park, where a total of 1,280 in Pudsey Pounds were awarded
The lottery's first anniversary draw in Pudsey Park, where a total of 1,280 in Pudsey Pounds were awarded

To mark a year since the lottery was founded, the first anniversary prize draw was hosted at Pudsey Park last week.

A total of £1,280 in Pudsey Pounds were awarded, with a first-place prize of £480.

Councillor Trish Smith, the chairwoman of the Pudsey Business Network Forum, came up with the idea for the lottery last year.

“It’s grown beyond recognition,” she told the Yorkshire Evening Post.

Councillor Trish Smith, the chairwoman of the Pudsey Business Network Forum, came up with the idea for the lottery last year

“The businesses love the fact the lottery pays out in Pudsey Pounds, so every penny, apart from small charges we have to pay, goes straight into Pudsey.

"It keeps the high street local and supports the 'shop local' ethos. If you can walk into a shop to buy what you need, you’re not only supporting local, you’re helping the climate emergency and building a community.”

The currency has been specifically designed with views of the Pudsey Borough - including a classic view of 1960’s Church Lane, an early tram negotiating the corner from Lidget Hill, a 1920s view of the (then) brand new children’s play area in Pudsey Park, and an Edwardian day out to Pudsey Beck in Black Carr Woods.

Since the lottery's launch, Coun Smith said new businesses are being drawn to the market town with the knowledge they will be supported by the Pudsey Pound.

"There’s so much variety," she added.

"The winner of this lottery has £480 to spend in Pudsey pounds; they can buy a window, a bed or a new carpet, they can get groceries or go out for a meal, get their hair done or go to the pub for a couple of pints.

“I want to give a super thanks to everyone involved. Without people buying tickets, and without shops selling them and accepting Pudsey pounds, we wouldn’t have got this far.

“Hopefully we’ll see it continue to grow and give Pudsey a real point of difference, giving other businesses the confidence to set up here.”

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