The Norwich firm which could one day change the way we buy our poppies

PUBLISHED: 14:39 12 November 2018 | UPDATED: 14:39 12 November 2018

The Royal British Legion's Pub Quiz contactless donation cards, enabled by Thyngs technology. Picture: Thyngs

The Royal British Legion's Pub Quiz contactless donation cards, enabled by Thyngs technology. Picture: Thyngs


A Norwich digi-tech company has come full circle by creating an app for the charity which inspired its founder.

Thyngs founder Dr Neil Garner. Picture: ThyngsThyngs founder Dr Neil Garner. Picture: Thyngs

Neil Garner of Thyngs first came up with the idea for the proximity-payment business when speaking to the director general of the Royal British Legion, who told him that if he could make an app for charity donations the organisation would be open to one day using it nationwide.

And as the country marks the centenary of the end of the First World War, Mr Garner and his team have created the RBL 2018 Pub Quiz app.

Enabled by Future50 business Thyngs’ near-field communication (NFC) and QR code technology, the interactive card lets quiz participants donate money by simply tapping or scanning it with their smartphone.

Mr Garner said: “The Royal British Legion was my inspiration for setting up Thyngs and it’s an honour to be able to work with the team for such an important and iconic cause.

“We work with a lot of major charities and once they’ve got the Thyngs technology in place they can use it whenever needed. The RBL could use it for the Pub Quiz at first and then in the future maybe to even sell the poppies themselves.”

Users of the app can also see how much money has been raised in real time, or snap and share a Pub Quiz selfie, complete with joker’s hat.

Any donations made using the cards are paid directly to the Royal British Legion, thus reducing administration costs.

Mr Garner added: “We work very closely with other firms which focus on working with ethical businesses, and it certainly gives us a drive to know we’re doing good with our work.”

Simon O’Leary, assistant director of fundraising at the Royal British Legion, said: “We have been piloting a new fundraising product and wanted a cashless channel for supporters to donate that was easy to use, quick to set up and simple enough to explain in marketing materials.

“Thyngs created a new opportunity for us to receive donations that ticked all the boxes, giving us a reliable and engaging new fundraising mechanism that fits seamlessly within the pub quiz supporter journey.”

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