Bitcoins buy beer in Cambridge

Cambridge Pubs are leading the way in offering bitcoin transactions for real world items.

Jun 10, 2013 at 1:27 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 10, 2021 at 10:52 a.m. UTC

Speculating on Bitcoin is all well and good, but what about real world purchasing? Well, there are a few enterprising corners dotted around the United Kingdom where brave business people have begun offering bitcoin payments. Just see Bitcoin Travel for examples, two of which can be found in the venerable city of Cambridge (which has a proud history of computer science).


We spotted an article on a blog called Cabume, which describes itself as "Tech news from the Cambridge cluster". The post tells the story of Andrew Bower who bought a pint of beer for 0.0202 BTC, equivalent to £1.55 (GBP). For those who are super curious, the details of the transaction can be found on – a QR code for the transaction was photographed in the original article (which is shown on the left).

His pint was purchased at The Haymakers (Cambridge), which is owned by a company run by a former Cambridge University computer scientist, Stephen Early. Early had installed the system and says that he believes this pint constituted the first Bitcoin transaction in Cambridge.

We also spotted on Reddit that another Cambridge pub, The Devonshire Arms, is furnishing its customers with the option to pay by bitcoin. We have less detail in this case, but Reddit user e4xit reported that he had used his app to pay for "a few rounds of beers".


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