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Exploring Bristol Centre, Clifton and Docks

By , Friday 18th December 2009 in Bristol Photo Days

On a cold winters morning I set off with my camera and brother in law to photograph the centre of Bristol and local surrounding area. I wanted to try and recreate some of the historic photos from 100 years ago to compare how Bristol has changed.

Having read a few books containing historic pictures of Bristol from the 1800's to 1960's I thought it would be a good idea to try and recreate some of the images for comparison. The results can be found in my "Bristol: Then and Now" page.

We started off by catching the bus into the centre, where we found Christmas Steps, one of the oldest parts of the old City. At the foot of the steps is one of England's oldest chippies. At the top of Christmas steps we find Foster’s House, a 'Burgundian domestic Gothic' group of buildings used as luxury flats.

A short walk from here we arrive at the recently renovated Colston Hall before heading back into the centre. Walking up to College Green we find the Marriott Royal and Bristol Cathedral, and a bit further up, Park Street for a few then and now photos. Near the top of Park Street we divert off down a side street to get to Brandon Hill and Cabot Tower. Unfortunately the tower was closed for renovation, however I was still able to get a few good views over the city.

After exploring Brandon Hill we explored Clifton a little and found a lovely vantage point overlooking the SS Great Britain and The Matthew, as well as the surrounding docks and Hotwells. Then we climbed down an old lane to get to the harbour side and floating docks, made a slight detour for the IMAX sphere and finally along the waterfront to a warm coffee shop for coffee and a muffin. Having warmed up and rested we headed out to find the Hatchet Inn, Bristols oldest pub dating back to 1606, then headed up Corn Street, exploring St Nicholas Market and finally Castle Green.

By this time it is dark and the camera is not not able to take pictures hand held any more, so we set off to find the Llandoger Trow, Bristols 2nd oldest pub (1644) for a well earned pint of traditional ale. Three later we decide to walk home, or rather to our local, for some more hot food and a few more pints of beer.
The Hatchet Inn
The Hatchet Inn

You can view all the pictures can be seen in my gallery "Exploring Bristol".

Total Distance Walked: About 10 miles.

You can trace the route we took around Bristol in the map below. I am trying to work out how to add my pictures to this map, until then please use one of the links at the start of this post to see them.

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About the Author

Tim Trott

Tim is a professional software engineer, designer, photographer and astronomer from the United Kingdom. You can follow him on Twitter to get the latest updates.

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