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southbristolvoice

December 2020 No. 60

www.southbristolvoice.co.uk

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Wishing our readers a very merry Christmas and a bright 2021!

EXCLUSIVE: Pool could open before Christmas

Turn to pages 14-24 for our Christmas feature

Covid vaccine on home turf by Adam Postans, LDRS reporter for South Bristol Voice A regional mass coronavirus vaccination centre is set to be created at Bristol City’s Ashton Gate football stadium. At the time the Voice went to print, residents were due to start receiving vaccines in the coming week, starting with over-50s and frontline health and care workers, local NHS chiefs have revealed. In addition to Ashton Gate, GP practices will be grouped together, with one of them administering jabs for patients from the other surgeries seven days a week. Between 75,000 and 110,000 people in the city, North

Somerset and South Gloucestershire will receive vaccines every week from December 7, until April 5, according to a report to University Hospitals Bristol and Weston NHS Trust (UHBW) board. Pharmacies will fill the gaps where GP coverage is low, and home visits will be carried out for housebound people, the

area’s clinical commissioning group says. At least 70 per cent of the local population will need to be vaccinated, which involves a second dose three to four weeks after the first. Robert Woolley, chief executive of UHBW, which runs the BRI, Bristol Children’s Hospital and Weston General, told trust board members on November 27: “We are gearing up to provide and administer mass vaccinations. This is moving very fast. “It is subject to Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Authority approval but if that approval is fast

Read more, P58

by Rich Coulter Campaigners fighting to save Jubilee Pool in Knowle from permanent closure have been told it can reopen again before Christmas. Jubilee Pool has been shut since the first lockdown in March. Bristol City Council previously said it cannot afford to reopen it and launched a public consultation in August on its permanent closure. Campaigners have been urging the council to reopen the pool while the debate about its future continues and now local councillor Gary Hopkins has been told the facility can reopen by mid December. Cllr Hopkins said it was vital

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Contacts

Becky Day Editorial director news@southbristolvoice.co.uk (Currently on maternity leave) Ruth Drury Sales director 07590 527664 sales@southbristolvoice.co.uk Rich Coulter Editorial director 07775 550607 news@southbristolvoice.co.uk Editorial team: Charley Rogers Next month’s deadline for editorial and advertising is December 15

COMPLAINTS Despite our best efforts, we sometimes get things wrong. We always try to resolve issues informally at first but we also have a formal complaints procedure. If you have a complaint about anything in the South Bristol Voice, contact the Editor using the details below. We aspire to follow the the Code of Conduct of the NUJ (National Union of Journalists), nuj.org.uk/about/nuj-code. Further details of the complaints process can be found on our website (below) or can be obtained by contacting the Editor by email: news@southbristolvoice.co.uk or by post: 111 Broadfield Rd, Knowle, Bristol BS4 2UX or by phone: 0777 555 0607.

southbristolvoice.co.uk/complaints-procedure

All stories and pictures are ©South Bristol Voice (unless otherwise stated) and may not be reproduced without permission. South Bristol Media Ltd | Co. no. 11948223 | VAT no. 322 3640 38

December 2020

HOW DO I GET IN TOUCH WITH ... My MP? Karin Smyth MP By email: karin.smyth.mp@ parliament.uk By post: Karin Smyth MP, House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA By phone: 0117 953 3575 In person: Call the above number for an appointment My councillor? Post: (all councillors) City Hall, College Green, Bristol BS1 5TR. Celia Phipps Labour, Bedminster By phone: 07469 413312 By email: Cllr.celia.phipps@bristol.gov.uk Mark Bradshaw Labour, Bedminster. By email: Cllr.mark. bradshaw@bristol.gov.uk By phone: 0117 353 3160 USEFUL NUMBERS Bristol City Council www.bristol.gov.uk   0117 922 2000 Waste, roads 0117 922 2100 Pests, dog wardens 0117 922 2500 Council tax 0117 922 2900

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Stephen Clarke Green, Southville By email: Cllr.stephen.clarke@ bristol.gov.uk Charlie Bolton Green, Southville By phone: 07884 736111 By email: Cllr.charlie.bolton@bristol.gov.uk Christopher Davies Lib Dem, Knowle Email: Cllr.Christopher. Davies@bristol.gov.uk Phone: 07826917714 Gary Hopkins Lib Dem, Knowle (Lib Dem deputy leader) Email: Cllr.Gary.Hopkins@bristol.gov.uk Phone: 07977 512159 Lucy Whittle Labour, Windmill Hill Phone: 07392 108805 Email: cllr.lucy.whittle@bristol.gov.uk Jon Wellington Labour, Windmill Hill Phone: 07392 108804 Email: Cllr.Jon.Wellington@bristol.gov.uk

Housing benefit 0117 922 2300 Social services  0117 922 2900 Police  Inquiries 101 Emergency 999

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December 2020

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News

New bus stops 'not good enough' says resident by Charley Rogers New bus stops through the Broad Walk in Knowle are not up to scratch, says resident Phillip Saint. Instead of a new stop and shelter in the old location, there is a “small plaque” that has been erected around 200 yards away from the previous site at the bottom of Broad Walk says local man Philip Saint, which is easy to miss and doesn’t provide cover from the weather. “Bus stops along Daventry Road and through Broad Walk were replaced,” Mr Saint said. “The one at Daventry Road was put in, the one in the middle of Broad Walk was put in, but the one at the bottom of Broad Walk was never erected.” The new bus stops are also lacking timetables, he adds, which prevents bus users from being able to find out what buses run from what stop, and when. The bus routes are operated by First West of England. The lack of good-quality public transport is at odds with the Mayor of Bristol’s agenda to encourage fewer cars through the city, argues Mr Saint. “How can the mayor be telling people to use public transport when in fact it is not publicallyowned? It is run by a privatelyowned company and is not controlled by the city council,” he said. As well as complaints about the new stops, Mr Saint has raised issues with the frequency and scope of buses from Knowle. He says: “There are no direct buses that run from Knowle right

The former bus stop at Broad Walk up to the Bristol Royal Infirmary (BRI), for instance.” This is an issue for Mr Saint and his wife, who suffers from arthritis, as the walk from the nearest bus stop to the BRI is too far, and thus not walkable. James Freeman, managing director at First West of England says: “Whilst First West of England is part of a publiclyquoted PLC and not owned nor subsidised by the local authority, its aim is to provide services that work for the public, and to ensure that customers are able to stay connected across many parts of the region. “Overall responsibility for the network lies (as it has done since 1986) with the local authorities. In our area the West of England Combined Authority (WECA) took over this responsibility, except in North Somerset, which looks after its own area. WECA maintains an overview of what commercial bus operators provide in terms of services and

frequencies, and, where it is cost-effective and in the public interest to do so, has the option to cover any gaps that it identifies in the network. “Bus Stops and bus stop publicity across the West of England are both owned and managed by the local authorities. Operators such as First West of

England may not display posters or information at bus stops. All displays are posted by WECA or North Somerset, as appropriate.” A West of England Combined Authority (WECA) spokesperson added: “As local bus service timetables are still changing regularly in response to the pandemic, the West of England Combined Authority is working hard to maintain up-to-date route and timetable information online – through both our local Travelwest site and the national Traveline service – and maintain live predictions on the digital RTI displays at bus stops. “We have launched into a major reprint of all of the timetable displays across the region. Where services are still changing regularly, we are showing a new format display, which is aimed at giving passengers as much up to date information as possible.”

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December 2020

News

Charity leaders recognised in Queen’s Honours list by Charley Rogers Clive Harry started his Knowlebased educational journey in 1973 working for the now-closed Merrywood School in Daventry Road. When the school closed in 2000, Clive saw an opportunity to continue the site’s legacy, and started The Park - a community centre committed to supporting local people. Barny Haughton is also based at The Park and has over 25 years’ experience in hospitality and as a chef, and is the founder and director of the Square Food Foundation, a charity supporting adults and children 'to access, cook and eat good food'. In recognition of their hard work supporting Bristol's communities, Clive has received the British Empire Medal (BEM) and Barny has been made a Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (MBE) as part of the latest Queen’s Birthday Honours. “Before retiring in 2014, I spent from 2000 onwards finding ways to use what became The

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Left, Clive Harry during the Queen's visit to The Park in 2005. Right, Barny Haughton, founder and director of Square Food Foundation Park for the benefit of the community,” says Clive. “What has always been central is a focus on young people and learning. Partly because the closure of Merrywood meant lots of displaced youngsters no longer had a neighbourhood school, but also because lack of learning – not just for young people, but also for adults – is a massive feature in deprivation.” In 2012, Clive and others established a registered charity – The Park Community Centre Ltd. This resulted in the transfer of ownership of the site from Bristol City Council to the charity.

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On receiving an BEM, Clive says: “I’m a great supporter of the awards and of the monarchy, and so is Knowle West. It’s as much for the community as it is for me.” For Barny, the MBE is also a boon for the community. He says: “Needless to say, this award isn’t just for me, it’s a recognition of all the work that people involved in the Square Food Foundation have done for communities in Bristol.” Barny is incredibly passionate about the role of food education, and is keen to get it on the government agenda. “I've always felt that food education is something that was missing within the community; not just within schools but within all demographics of society. With food poverty, the issue isn't just about money, it's about knowledge, skills, confidence and access to food.” And it’s not just about learning to cook, says Barny. Food education is an essential building block for human resilience. “I am more and more certain that through food education, we can reach people in ways that could deliver real social change, both economically and psychologically.

“It's the route towards community resilience, and towards individual health and public health, and that’s without focusing on other things such as the environment and climate crisis.” Both The Park and Square Food Foundation have exciting futures ahead. For The Park, a site extension is on the horizon. The new Park Centre is costing in the region of £8m, says Clive, and the site will host both a new centre and school. The Square Food Foundation is continuing its work to provide free food education to schools and vulnerable communities around the city, and has an ongoing partnership with a local primary school, Oasis Academy Connaught. Barny says: “We also want to roll the programme out in other schools in Bristol, and hopefully help other people to see that this is really important and exciting. Everyone’s a bit despairing at the moment, what with the pandemic. But we hope the Square Food Foundation can help bring comfort, hope and optimism for the future. For us, it’s a no-brainer.” More information can be found at theparkcentre.org.uk and squarefoodfoundation.co.uk

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December 2020

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Last orders

by BBC LDRS staff for South Bristol Voice The writing is on the wall for a much missed pub in south Bristol after the owners gained permission to convert it into flats. As previously reported in South Bristol Voice, The Windmill pub closed in March, before the first lockdown, and the community was subsequently unable to raise enough money to buy it. Now owners Bar Wars have secured council approval to turn the establishment in Windmill Hill into five flats, and are planning to sell it along with the consent. Windmill Hill residents and local councillors argued passionately that a planning committee should reject the application to preserve the pub as a vital community asset. But members heard there were no valid legal or policy reasons to reject the application. They granted approval with “heavy hearts”, with one noting hopefully there was still a chance for residents to raise the asking price. The meeting heard the owners put the pub on the market for £525,000 last year and have since dropped the price to £495,000. Save The Windmill campaign

Campaigner group makes final passionate pleas but permission given to turn Windmill into flats group, pictured, managed to crowdfund £170,480 and have registered the pub as an “asset of community value”. Residents accused the owners of neglecting the pub and pricing it out of their reach, and pleaded with councillors to save it from conversion. But Bar Wars director Mike Cranney said he had spent the last 12 months working hard with campaigners, who turned down his offer of taking on the lease. He said: “We’ve invested over 14 years of our lives in The Windmill and it took a lot of hard work from many people to make a success of it. “The heartbreaking fact is that for many reasons our business model no longer works in the venue. “We’ve tried extremely hard to retain the building as a pub without success. “We are not some greedy developer trying to cash in.” But residents pleaded with councillors to consider the community benefits of The Windmill, arguing it still had the potential to turn a profit.

Dianne James, from Save The Windmill, said: “The Windmill was the centre of our community – a safe place for many, a place to meet and socialise, watch films, host parties, eat, drink, take the family to meet other families, have fun and so much more. “They say the pub can’t make a profit, but it comes with a fourbedroom flat which has stood empty. “It could generate an income which would more than cover the shortfall.” Other residents pointed out that there would be no shortage of customers once hundreds of promised new homes are built as part of the Bedminster Green development nearby. But the Bristol City Council officer who recommended approval said there was a wide range of other pubs within walking distance so the owners did not have to demonstrate that the pub was no longer economically viable. The officer added that the owners had altered the plans since their last failed attempt to get planning permission in

April, and the flats now provided adequate living conditions. Officers were satisfied that the flats would have no detrimental effect on the neighbours or on parking in the street, he said. Councillors voted five to three to approve the plans. Labour councillor Mike Davies said: “I think the applicant’s account of the financial viability seems believable. “I can’t see anything wrong with the residential proposal itself, and since there are a range of pubs in the area, I don’t think there are any salient grounds on which we could refuse this. “I know it’s sad for local people, but a planning committee can’t save a pub in and of itself. “The owner owns it. We can’t force him to re-open a lossmaking pub.” Labour councillor Jo Sergeant, who voted against approval, said: “Clearly this is a pub of importance to the local community, and if we keep shutting down pubs just to build soulless flats that most people can’t afford to buy anyway, I don’t really think we’re doing the people of Bristol any kind of service.” The approved plans are for two one-bedroom and three twobedroom flats.

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December 2020

News

Sorrow as 'lovely' community patch sold for housing by Charley Rogers A small community garden at the corner of South and North Streets, currently tended by Patchwork Community Gardening group, has been sold for housing. The patch of land was previously owned by JC Decaux and has been leased to Patchwork since 2008 to be used as a community garden. Patchwork member Laura Murgatroyd, on behalf of the group, told the South Bristol Voice: “We drew up a lease with JC Decaux, which has a billboard in front of the patch, in 2008, and we knew this [kind of sale] would be a possibility. “They gave us a month’s notice, as our agreement stipulated, and the new owner got in touch with me before the auction and after it.” The patch has come along really well in the last 12 years, says Laura, and is one of the group’s favourites: “We’ve seen

it go from just a The small bramble patch patch of to something community very lovely, with garden, which trees, shrubs has been sold and fruit,” she for housing says. “Local people often comment on how much they like it when they walk past. But our work will continue with the other gardens we look after.” The loss of the garden is a shame, adds Laura, especially since Southville has the least amount of green space per capita than any other ward in Bristol. “Losing precious green space with so little housing gain is sad,” she says. However, the group has hopes that the new housing will be sustainable in terms of energy and water use, and would “love it if the new housing had a garden that made use of some of the patch and its fruit trees”.

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Most of the plants in the garden are too mature to move, but the group plans to take cuttings to try and establish them elsewhere. One of the group’s hopes is that Bristol City Council will recalculate the ratio of green space per head in the city, and take into account developments since the last calculation. Laura says: “One of the reasons we set up Patchwork was to make good use of the small amount of green space we had here, to enrich people’s lives. The coronavirus pandemic has emphasised just how vital it is to have easy access

to green areas and wildlife.” The Patchwork Community Gardening group has been working in Bedminster and Southville for the last 17 years, and has seven patches that they take care of, including two small orchards. “Dozens of volunteers and a committed group of people have been improving green spaces in the area for a long time, making it brighter for residents and more wildlife friendly,” says Laura. “New volunteers are always welcome to join us. This year we haven’t been able to garden as a group as we would in normal times, but we have been working hard and going out regularly in small groups or individually.” The Voice was still awaiting a response from JC Decaux at the time of going to print. For more on Patchwork’s gardens, visit bedminsterpatchwork.tumblr. com or search on Facebook: @bedminsterpatchwork

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News

'Memories of a Bristol Boyhood' - now on sale John Fletcher’s history of Bristol is now available to purchase at Broadwalk News by Charley Rogers If you’re interested in local history, it’s likely you know the name John Fletcher. We have been serialising chapters of John’s book – Memories of a Bristol Boyhood – in this paper since the summer, and both John and his stories have received plenty of positive feedback. Due to the success of his work, John and friend Peter Read have organised the books to be sold in Knowle at Broadwalk News. John and his wife Mary previously had 100 copies of the book printed, which they then sold to family and friends to raise money for the Children’s Hospice South West. Since the serialisation of the book here in

the South Bristol Voice has become more popular, John decided this would be an opportunity to raise more money for charity, and so a further 100 copies have been printed. “Charities often rely on donations and fundraising from individuals, which due to the pandemic they’re not getting much of right now,” says John. “Funding can be difficult for these charities, and they do great things, so we thought ‘here’s an opportunity to raise a bit more’.” The books are available at Broadwalk News for £10 each, every penny of which goes to charity. “Peter ran Broadwalk News for 27 years, and is on good terms with the family that currently run it, so we were able

to work with them to get the books on sale,” explains John. Memories of a Bristol Boyhood has already been a success, with the shop reporting 10 sales in the first week. Peter says: “I have always felt that this is an important record of life at that time, and it just happens to be beautifully written as well. John is a very good friend, and along with his wife, Mary, has been a member of Knowle and Totterdown Local History Society for over 30 years. “This is a fascinating window into a time that is not so long ago, yet has changed in just about all respects. A very good read in the long winter ahead, a present that will be greatly appreciated, and an enormous help to a most deserving charity.” John and Mary have paid for the print run themselves, using a

printer in Oxford near where their daughter lives. “Our daughter’s business uses a printer which is very good, so we got the books done there, and then shipped them over to Bristol,” says John. Memories of a Bristol Boyhood covers the history of Bristol from 1932 to 1952 where John shares his life stories, from the city centre’s demolition through the Blitz to the tram system that was popular before the mass introduction of private vehicles. To purchase a copy, head down to Broadwalk News, 11 Broad Walk, Knowle, or if you’re unable to get to the shop, please email your details to info@ knowleandtotterdownhistory. org.uk Read the latest instalment on Pages 26 and 27

Peter Read outside Broadwalk News with copies of John Fletcher's book. Inset, John

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December 2020

Save Jubilee Pool

Permanent closure would be 'criminal negligence'

Protesters outside the pool earlier this year by BBC LDRS staff for South Bristol Voice A 1,300-name petition which claims it would be “criminal negligence” to close Jubilee Pool permanently has been delivered to Bristol City Council. Lib Dem group leader Cllr Gary Hopkins, pictured, presented it at a meeting of full council as he urged Marvin Rees to “stop playing fantasy games” and reopen the much-loved swimming pool in Knowle. It comes after a letter signed by 15 cross-party councillors was sent to the city mayor last month demanding he secure the centre’s future. See opposite page. Jubilee Pool has been shut since the first lockdown in March. The local authority says it cannot afford to reopen it and launched a public consultation in August on its permanent closure Cllr Hopkins told city council members’ forum on Tuesday, November 10: “The cross-party working group, with

Conservative, Labour and Lib Dem councillors, unanimously recommended to the mayor that in the short term Jubilee Pool be reopened because it was just as cheap to reopen as it was to keep it closed. “We cannot obviously have magicked up a long-term solution in a matter of a couple of months.” Mr Rees replied: “You’re quite remarkable because you do go on about Jubilee Pool in spite of the history. “It’s not a couple of months, you’ve had 10 years to come up with a solution ever since you signed the PFI (private finance initiative) that was based on the business case to close Jubilee Pool. “We continue to work with the operators looking at pool capacity and making sure there is swimming pool provision within the city. “We are waiting for the results of the consultation to see if there

is a workable plan that can be brought forward.” Cllr Hopkins said: “We are not making any criticism at all of the PFI passed in detail by the 2008 Labour cabinet. “It actually produced the Hengrove pool which is of great benefit to the city, but it is very different to Jubilee Pool.” Speaking at full council later that evening, he said: “The organisation Friends of Jubilee Pool is growing in numbers and strength and this issue will not go away. “The mayor needs to listen to his own councillors, the cross-party group which has said this pool should now reopen under the present management until 2022, which is what is in the contract. “Please stop playing fantasy games and can we now get on with getting this pool reopened?” The petition, signed by 1,369 people, says it would be “criminal negligence to let a vital community resource slip away because the council has a short-term finance problem”. It says: “We recognise that pre-Covid the pool was operating

at a small profit but more importantly it is vital for local health and wellbeing. “A small capital investment is needed to protect it for the next 20 years and would support a local not-for-profit trust taking over the management, if the council are unable to organise themselves to manage it.” The 15-member cross-party group was set up as a result of a Labour amendment during a heated council meeting last month where members debated a 4,700-name petition from campaigners. The amended motion called on the mayor to extend the public consultation by a month and task the working group with finding potential solutions, such as the community buying the pool to run themselves. Mr Rees has publicly backed this option, which officers had previously ruled out. Operator Parkwood Leisure is contracted to run the pool until March 2022. A cabinet decision on the pool’s long-term future is due in January.

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December 2020

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Save Jubilee Pool

Path clear for pool to reopen before Christmas From Page 1 that pool users now take the opportunity to show the council how popular it is for the community. He said that the council has been paying to keep the facility 'safe' but when it was pointed out that these costs are equal to the costs of reopening, the chief executive Mike Jackson agreed that as long as operator Parkwood was happy, there was no reason not to reopen the pool. Cllr Hopkins said: "The operators are happy to reopen and we think this can be done in a couple of weeks once checks have been done to the pool. "There is now no logical reason not to reopen. We have been asking for this for some time now and it is important that users now use the facility. "Parkwood have been struck by the strength of public feeling since the pool has been closed."

The Friends of Jubilee Pool said they welcomed this latest statement from the Council and are cautiously optimistic. Spokeswoman Jo Franks said: "Only when the doors of the pool are finally open, however, will we have cause for celebration. "We have always insisted that there is no reason why the pool should not re-open post lockdown. "And we have proven how important this facility is for the health and well-being of so many people; not just for a place to exercise but for their mental health and a sense of community. "During these uncertain times, the Council should be prioritising accessible facilities such as Jubilee, not closing them. "We hope that both BCC and Parkwood will now honour their existing contract until 2022 and we are happy to work with them to provide a facility which the community deserves."

The reopening comes after the cross-party group of 15 councillors demanded the site be reopened while its long-term future is decided. The group, which includes six Labour councillors, wrote to city mayor Marvin Rees in late

Monday

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l Morning and afternoon/evening Filwood Community Centre, Knowle BS4 1JP Kim - 07920023170

Tuesday

l Morning and afternoon/evening Church of the Nazarene, Knowle Park BS4 1PA Susan – 07711 388511 l Afternoon Redland Park United Reformed Church, Clifton BS6 6SA. Laura - 07795 474532

October (before the most recent Covid lockdown) saying it was “unreasonable” to keep the pool closed for “no good reason” while waiting for the Labour administration to make a decision on the future of the pool beyond 2022.

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December 2020

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News

Revealed ... North Street location for top restaurant One of the region’s most highly acclaimed eating establishments has announced the exact location of where it will be opening its second restaurant on North Street. Last month, The Pony and Trap revealed to many delighted Instagram followers that it will be coming to North Street, but the exact whereabouts remained a mystery. However, the Michelinstarred restaurant – co-owned by acclaimed chef Josh Eggleton – has since shared that it will be opening The Pony North Street, next door to the Bristol Beer Factory’s tap room. On Instagram, The Pony and Trap posted a photo of the familiar Bristol Beer Factory wall, along with the caption: “The Pony North Street. A lot of you made some good guesses… but here you have it, our second restaurant will be next door to @bristolbeerfactory’s tap room. Did anyone get it right? Tell us

below if you did! More info coming soon #theponynorthstreet.” The surprise venture is in

addition to its flagship restaurant based in Chew Magna, which is scheduled to reopen in spring 2021.

Although the restaurant has been closed since the coronavirus outbreak, fans of The Pony and Trap’s much-adored menu have been able to get their fill at its pop-up restaurant as part of the Breaking Bread dining experience on Clifton Downs. On The Pony and Trap’s website, a post reads: “As for The Pony North Street, well, this one came about rather suddenly, and it was an opportunity too good to miss. We are working on getting it open quicksmart, as, unlike the higgledy-piggledy nooks and crannies of The Pony & Trap, the North Street site is large enough to welcome guests with all the proper covid safety precautions in place. “Well… more on that one later (but not too much later!).” The opening date of The Pony North Street is yet to be revealed, but the Voice recommends keeping an eye on their social media for further updates @theponyandtrap.

Life changing Our entrance examinations and assessments for entry in September 2021 are taking place in January Call Hollie Matthews on 0117 933 9885 Got a story for South Bristol Voice? Call Rich on 0777 555 0607 or email news@southbristolvoice.co.uk


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12

December 2020

News

'How lockdown inspired my sketching project' by Charley Rogers Following on from her first book of lockdown sketches, Long Ashton-based artist Victoria Willmott has published her second volume. The book – Lockdown Sketches 2 (pictured, right) – is composed of drawings created throughout the summer, and was finally completed in October. Victoria launched the book on Friday, November 6, just one day after the UK went into a second lockdown. “I had a lot of enthusiasm from my first lockdown sketches book,” says Victoria, “so I wanted to continue the momentum and build this collection.” Victoria is also keen to create a record of this extraordinary moment in history. She says: “Making them into a book allows the drawings to be read as a journey, a story of the summer and a way to remember this unusual period of our lives. It becomes a token of this time when our lives changed so dramatically.”

Lockdown Sketches 2 was largely influenced by socially distanced trips and outings that Victoria took throughout July and August. “I took my sketchbook with me on bike rides and walks from Bristol to Saltford, Clevedon and Dundry,” she says. “The inspiration really came from my journey to these new places, a change of scenery and the way that we coped

through the anxieties and worries of the pandemic.” Victoria has created over 46 doublepage pastel drawings since the beginning of March, and is keen to keep releasing books. “I mostly want to show the life and energy of the day, remembering little details like the colour of the sky, and living creatures and plants as I saw them.” On advice for budding artists,

Victoria says: “If you want to take up sketching, always carry a sketchbook with you, as you never know when your inspiration will come. Take it on the bus, on a walk or to a friend’s house. It’s something I rarely leave the house without.” Both books are available to purchase on Victoria’s website, victoriawillmott.com, priced £12 each or both for £20.

To advertise, contact sales@southbristolvoice.co.uk or Ruth on 07590 527664


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December 2020

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Christmas in South Bristol

Help spread Christmas cheer throughout BS3

M

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AD

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BS3

Community groups have joined forces to organise the biggest gift donation drive BS3 has seen to date. BS3 Community Covid-19 Response group, BS3 Community Development and BS3 Community Larder have launched Pass the Parcel, which will see local schools, shelters and tenants of Help Bristol's Homeless accommodation

E C CH HRISTMAS

receive gifts donated online by the public. "This year has been so hard on so many," organisers say. "BS3 is a fantastic place to live, filled with kind people who are willing to help others. "We have co-ordinated with other organisations to ensure that we reach as many of those in need as we can so they get a little something special this Christmas." A gift list can be found by visiting the BS3 Community Covid-19 Response website (www.bs3communityresponse. co.uk) and clicking the 'Pass the Parcel wishlist' button, or by visiting its Facebook page. The gift list will link you to a wide range of items, sold by local BS3 shops - meaning that any money spent goes back into the community. In order for the project to quarantine, wrap and deliver the gifts, organisers urge those

wishing to give to start shopping and donating sooner rather than later. Monetary donations can also be made, which will then be used by the project to

purchase the gifts. Please visit the BS3 Covid-19 Community Response website (www. bs3communityresponse.co.uk) for more details or look out for posters in local shops.

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December 2020

southbristolvoice

Christmas in South Bristol Advertising feature

Loving restorations Wood & Steele rescue and lovingly restore neglected vintage furniture, preventing it from ending up in landfill. Each piece is given a subtly modern finish whilst preserving it’s original patina, meaning you get a quality piece of furniture which is full of character and will last a lifetime! Commissions taken.

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Got a story for South Bristol Voice? Call Rich on 0777 555 0607 or email news@southbristolvoice.co.uk

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December 2020

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Christmas in South Bristol

Street advent promises to light up community Local streets can add a touch of sparkle to December by transforming their windows into living advent calendars. The idea is part of #BedminsterStreetAdvent which encourages houses in participating streets to pick a

date between 1-24 and decorate the window with a Christmas theme. Rev Nick Hay, vicar of St Aldhelms, Chessel Street and St Pauls, Coronation Road, said: “Covid means that we won’t be able to welcome people into our churches to

celebrate Christmas in the usual way. Candlelit carol services can’t happen, but we hope that #BedminsterStreetAdvent will light up the community.” Households will need to show the date, and keep the window display up until

December 25. By Christmas Day, each participating street will have a complete living Advent calendar. For more information, visit seestaldhelms. org and saintpaulschurch. co.uk. Share your windows using #BedminsterStreetAdvent.

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To advertise, contact sales@southbristolvoice.co.uk or Ruth on 07590 527664


December 2020

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19

Christmas in South Bristol

Christmas gift appeal for children in need by Steve Lambert People and businesses are being urged to show the gift of kindness to children in South Bristol and beyond. Every Child Needs Christmas (ECNC) aims to get a present out to any youngster who might not otherwise receive one. The campaign collected and distributed 700 gifts when it began six years ago. By last year, its growing success enabled it to send 12,200 presents out into the community. ECNC is asking for donations of new and sealed, non-edible gifts for ages 0-16 around the £5-£7 mark. It then distributes them to children in areas with a BS postcode, including South Bristol. Because of Covid-19 restrictions, the only drop-off points are in Weston-superMare. But people can instead use

the following Amazon wish list link - https://amzn.to/2MBcjRL – to donate without leaving their homes, and the gift will arrive at the campaign’s HQ. Retailers are being encouraged to set up an Every Child Needs Christmas purchase point in their shop with items that fall into the campaign’s category. ECNC will advertise where the supporting businesses are so that people can pop in and purchase. Any business wishing to take part must contact the organisers so they can receive a registration code. To do so, find Every Child Needs Christmas on Facebook (see the link below) and send them a message. The campaign works with organisations including charities, places of worship and social care teams, which refer children to ECNC so they can receive a

southbristolvoice

20

n FEATURE - BABIES

Baby sensory

Preg pilat

Cooking for growing baby

Relax

present. It also sends generic their caregivers didn’t gift. The Tuesdays at Victoria Park gifts to food banks. challenges for Church, their mental health Baptist Sylvia Campaigner founder Sara and wellbeing that this presents Avenue Bedminster Arshad said: “For many in our is heartbreaking. So we can all 10.15 (0-13 months), local area, Christmas is another get together as a(0-13 community 11.15 months)and occasion that highlights their make a12.15 difference. (0-6 months) and 13.30this (0-13 months) struggle. For the families that we "For many, will be the work with via organisations that only gift that they receive and for Thursdays – The support them, food is the main these children and Southville families this Centre, concern. Gifts aren’t even really really will mean soSouthville much.” 9.45 (0-13 months), on the radar.” For more information about Please contact Sian on 10.45 (0-13 months) And children in this situation the campaign, go to https:// bristolsouth@babysensory.co.uk 11.45 (0-6 months) find it hard when they return www.facebook.com/childsxmas/ 12.45 (0-13 months) or to book directly visit to school after the holidays and The campaign mostly delivers arewww.babysensory.com/bristol-south asked what they got for to Weston-super-Mare Bristol, Christmas. Clevedon, Portishead, South Glos “Father Christmas didn’t visit, and Keynsham.

Movingonto ontosolids Moving solids but notbut surenot where to sure where to start? Learn everything start? Learn there is to know everything thereabout is to know about weaning whilst cooking weaning whilst a range of freezer-ready cooking a range foods to take home. of freezer-ready Get in touch foods to taketo find out home. Next class Thursday 26 March at The Milk about classes (booking essential) or contact Shed (booking essential) or contact Holly to Holly to arrange a private class. arrange a private class.

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,

December 2020

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20

Christmas in South Bristol

Who do YOU know who deserves Coronavirus has made it SUCH a difficult year for many people for many different reasons... health, jobs, finances. That's not forgetting the normal pressures of daily life. So the South Bristol Voice team spoke to some of the brilliant businesses in our area and we've come up with NINE fantastic hampers which we want to give away to deserving families, couples or individuals. All you need to do is get in touch with us and let us know who you think deserves one and we'll do the rest! To get in touch, see bottom of page. Hamper 1, Children's Books, toys and treats donated by Caroline Seredenco, Ruth Drury, Asda and Ade Bowen

Adoptymum by Elena Holmes www.elenaholmes.com

Hamper 2, Baby 4D Pregnancy scan by Imaginatal and other goodies. See Page 60.

Mime by Chrissey Harrison chrisseyharrison.com/mime

Hamper 3, Wellbeing Reflexology session by Be Therapy alex@betherapies.com Poetry book by Cheryl Lee-White www.facebook.com/ cherylleewhiteauthor/ Earrings by Dainty Jessica www.etsy.com/uk/shop/DaintyJessica Prosecco by Cleve House Temple Spa Goodies www.templespa.com/debbiereid Hamper 4, Teen's Dobble by Toyville www.toyvilleshop.co.uk

Hamper 6, Food Various items including marmalade, beer, chutney and other goodies donated by Cleve House, Asda, Pierre Fox, Bristol City and Redcatch Community Garden. Final product contents may vary from image. Hamper 7, Home Lampshade Kit by Hannah Redden https://www.hannahredden.co.uk/ Art Print by Casper

Measure of Days by Sophy Layzell www.bookguild.co.uk

Art Print by Annabel Glassby Pet Portrait by Rachel Heaton

The Wrong Sort to Die by Paula Harmon paulaharmondownes.wordpress.com

Hamper 8, Children's Tam's Journey by Amanda Peddle www.insideoutosyp.co.uk

Hamper 5, Adult Books Stories of Bristol by Paul Breeden @tangentbooks

Too Many Pants by Ruth Drury

Tell me Why by Ruth O'Neill www.publishnation.co.uk

Hamper

2

Eco hamper by Bee Eco Friendly www.etsy.com/uklisting/883484765/ diy-beeswax-food-wrap-kit-makeyour-own Blue Glass by Bristol Blue Glass www.bristol-glass.co.uk/

Killing the Girl by Elizabeth Hill www.wickedwritersite.wordpress.com

1

The Ultimate Career Move by Gavin Watkins | @tangentbooks

Time Shifters by Kate Frost www.kate-frost.co.uk

Memories of a Bristol Boyhood by John Fletcher Broadwalk News

Hamper

Hamper 9, Self Improvement Luxe Gym Membership for one year for a couple by Luxe Gym hello@luxe-fitness.com Computer Lessons by Simon Reed, Device Academy Five 1-hour lessons info@deviceacademy.co.uk

How to nominate someone for a hamper

Hamper

3

To nominate a family, couple or individual for a hamper, all you need to do is: call Ruth on 07590 527 664 or email sales@southbristolvoice.co.uk, stating which hamper and the person you wish to receive it. You will need to supply the recipient's contact details and the hamper will be delivered by South Bristol Voice before Christmas. We only have one of each hamper and the decision on the recipient is the editor's. Only one hamper per recipient. T&Cs apply. Contents may vary from pictures. Last nominations by December 16, 2020. South Bristol Voice may ask recipients/nominators if they wish to be part of a future editorial feature story but this is NOT a requirement of the hamper giveaway.

To advertise, contact sales@southbristolvoice.co.uk or Ruth on 07590 527664


December 2020

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Christmas in South Bristol

one of our Christmas Hampers? Hamper

4

Hamper

7

Hamper

Hamper

Hamper

Hamper

5

6

8

9

Got a story for South Bristol Voice? Call Rich on 0777 555 0607 or email news@southbristolvoice.co.uk


December 2020

southbristolvoice

22

Christmas in South Bristol

Magic! Santa's grotto to visit local doorsteps Christmas wish lists will need to be at the ready, as Santa and his trusty elf will be visiting families on their doorsteps (at a twometre distance, of course) across BS3 in the run up to Christmas. The travelling Santa's grotto has been created by two of Bristol’s top comic theatre performers Stewart Wright (Santa, pictured left) and Lucy Tuck (Elf, pictured right), in association with Tobacco Factory Theatres. The idea is the brainchild of Stewart and his wife Celia, who runs her own communications business, and was born out of the couple's need to 'think outside the box' after the pandemic impacted on their freelance work. Although Santa's sleigh will be out of sight on the rooftops, locals may hear the jingling of Rudolph's bells. Elf will sprinkle Christmas magic while Santa visits each household, giving the children the chance to tell him their Christmas wish lists. There will be music, sleigh bells and sack loads of Christmas spirit. The travelling grotto must be booked in advance and to secure a booking, twenty children on a street are needed. If a street cannot hit that number, the team will try and

pair up local streets. Stewart, who has played a wide variety of roles in film and TV for over 20 years, said: "It’s been quite a year for us as a couple of freelancers with two young boys. We’ve had to quickly reinvent ourselves and how we earn a living. "I very quickly wrote off my chances of earning as an actor for a year or two and signed up as a Deliveroo rider." The couple has already sold out lots of dates as a result of putting the flyer on their school parents’ WhatsApp group, and the theatre community seem to be delighted that there is a Christmas show happening in Bristol this year. Stewart added: "Things seems strangely busy for the first time in a while.

"There’s an uncertainty in the air about everything at the moment, an immediacy and fear-driven alertness, but we are reacting and adapting as we emerge into a new world." The experience costs £10 per child, with 50p per ticket being donated to Victoria Park Baptist Church Foodbank and 50p going to Tickets Ignite, which funnels 30 per cent of their profits back into the arts. Remaining Covid-safe is imperative to the BS3 Santa team, and Santa and Elf will always remain two metres from the front door of each booked household. Stewart and Lucy are well-versed in entertaining local families, especially over the festive period. Stewart played Roger in Swallows and Amazons at Bristol Old Vic, and Uncle Henry in the film Nativity 3: Dude, Where’s My Donkey? Lucy has been an integral part of recent Christmas successes at Tobacco Factory Theatres, where she played Mrs Dearly in 101 Dalmatians, a Stepsister in Cinderella, A Fairytale, and most recently Mrs Driver in The Borrowers. Bookings for BS3 Santa can be made at www.bs3santa.co.uk. More information on Facebook and Instagram: @bs3santa

FLIP on North Street is one of South Bristol's increasing number of ethically vegan businesses. During the first lockdown, FLIP transformed from being a cafe to becoming a specialist deli and shop. The focus of FLIP is sourcing quality products and ingredients to help people create great food - whether vegan or not. The kitchen is still operating and everyday produces a range of fresh items for the deli including sandwiches, pasties ready meals and cakes. A new gift area has recently been added at FLIP which offers a range of selected, mostly food related, products.

FLIP also sells specialist beers & wines as well as takeaway coffee.

OFFER! claim a coffee or hot drink for £1 when you spend £5. State code SBV Coffee 81 North St, Bedminster, BS3 1ES www.flipfood.co.uk

To advertise, contact sales@southbristolvoice.co.uk or Ruth on 07590 527664


southbristolvoice wellsvoice

December 2020 26

23 December 2020

n CHRISTMAS GHOST STORY

The New Café By Jan Ellis

H

annah liked to sit in the alcove between the big old fireplace and the window that gave onto a chilly courtyard. She stayed aloof from the hustle and bustle of the café in what had once been the sitting room of a handsome house. As she sat there, looking out, her fingers idly knotted and unknotted the fringes of a shawl on her lap. As customers entered and chose their spots at the oak tables, some shivered and pulled their coats closer, rubbing their hands together and remarking on how cold the room was, despite the festive decorations and the stove in the inglenook. There must have been a draught, but Hannah seemed not to notice it as it grew dark outside and a thin sleet began to cover the pavement, making it slippery. There was a melancholy pleasure to be had, silently watching the customers, especially when they had children or babies with them. Sometimes she would stretch out a hand towards a small child who had wandered over and smiled at her, but inevitably the parents would pick up the child and place it back on its seat. A grey dog came in, shook gritty rain from its fur then started and pulled back towards the door as its owners wrestled the lead in between ordering tea and toasted teacakes from the young waitress. Most of the time Hannah ignored the cafe’s customers, gazing instead at the courtyard, where the well used to be. She would never forget the well. As the eldest daughter, it was her chore to fetch water and carry it back to the house they shared

‘She lost her footing on the dank, mossy brick and slithered down, her hands grasping hopelessly at thin air as she plunged towards the inky water’

with two other families. That day her mother was busy at home preparing Christmas puddings with an invalid husband and seven little ones under her feet. “Take Alfie,” she had said, handing over a reluctant toddler and a stoneware jug, “and don’t be long.” Hannah struggled with the heavy jug and the wriggling child as they slithered across the icy ground from the house to the yard, so she lifted up the boy and wrapped her shawl tightly around them both, crossing it over her chest and knotting it at the waist as best she could. At the well, she quickly finished her task and was ready to leave when Alfie’s podgy arm swung out, catching their mother’s jug and sending it tumbling. She’d been warned a hundred times of the dangers, but she was more afraid of the beating she’d get if she went home without the jug, so she tied up her skirts, stepped over the edge and used the rough indentations cut into the side to make her way down towards the water. But, inevitably perhaps, she lost her footing on the dank, mossy brick and slithered down, her hands grasping hopelessly at thin air as she plunged towards the inky water, where her heavy skirts soon pulled her under. Some children heard her shriek as she fell and ran to fetch help. It was teatime so it took a while for men to come, and it was the farrier – the strongest of them – who was lowered down on the rope to bring her back up. At a signal the waiting men hauled on the rope. Lanterns were dangled over the edge, but they only reached so far and it seemed an eternity before the bystanders who had crowded around could see the top of the farrier’s dark head and make out the sodden bundle clasped tightly beneath one sturdy arm. Hannah was carried, dazed and barely breathing, to her home where she was put to bed as her mother ran back to the well, screaming. After a few days, the girl developed a fever then

Jan Ellis writes feel-good fiction and mystery from a 16th-century cottage behind Wells Cathedral. Her books are available from all good bookshops and from libraries across the region. Visit www. janelliswriter.com to read more about the books or to contact Jan. fell into a stupor and died. The physician said it was the shock of the fall that had killed her, but the neighbours whispered that it was grief and guilt that had caused her heart to cease its beating. Falling through the darkness, Hannah had felt the shawl come loose from her waist as her brother tumbled past her and was lost.

I

n the café, Imogen began gathering up her shopping bags, scarf and woolly hat, getting ready to leave. “And where do you think you’re going?” she asked her little boy, as she wrestled the pushchair between crowded tables. “I want to talk to the lady.” “Which lady?” she asked, looking around the busy room. The child pointed towards the alcove by the window. “The sad lady in the corner.” “But there is no lady, Ben.” “There is!” “Okay, let’s check, shall we?”

said his mother, hoping to avoid a tantrum on Christmas Eve. “You see – there’s nobody here. Oh, I think you have a leak,” she said, smiling at the owner as she pointed at a puddle of water shining blackly on the flagstone floor. “Not again.” The owner scratched his head and looked up at the ceiling. “I’ve had plumbers in but none of them can tell me where the water’s coming from. There’s nothing but a store cupboard upstairs and the floor’s as solid as they come, so I’m stumped.” “It’s just one of the joys of older properties, I suppose.” The woman shivered. “It’s cold in this part of the room, too. Anyway, we’d best be off.” And, as his mother led him reluctantly away, Ben turned and waved goodbye to the girl who sat weeping silently in the corner. © Jan Ellis

To advertise, contact Andy on 01749 Email: sales@wellsvoice.co.uk Got a story for South Bristol Voice?675157 Call Rich on 0777 555 0607 or email news@southbristolvoice.co.uk


southbristolvoice

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December 2020

Christmas Thought for the Month with Revd Nick Hay, Vicar of St Augustine’s Church and St Paul’s Church, Southville, Bristol and Area Dean for the South Bristol Deanery of the C of E

I

Christmas in Prison

have loads of memories of different Christmases, brilliant carol services, wassailing round the pubs, reading the bible with my family and singing carols in our front room but, perhaps the most poignant memories are from my time as Prison Chaplain. I was a chaplain for 8 years at HMP Ashfield and there was something about Christmas Day behind locked doors and high fences that made it even more real for me. We had fun. Ashfield was a young offender's institute and the young men put on a show called "The Christmas Extravaganza". They practiced really hard and performed for the dignitaries and assorted guests who came to the chapel. The acts included raps, drama,

the finale was a puppet show and it always started with "We Three Kings" with three lads dressed up singing a verse each. They were always totally out of tune. On Christmas Day itself we had a simple service and the chapel would be packed. We would talk about Jesus, how his mum had to give birth in a strange town, full of people who had come to sign the government roll call. How they couldn't find anywhere to stay, but had to use a stable. One year a young man talked about his Christmas, he had been homeless, this is the poem he wrote:

Christmas

Families round a table of festive cheer Receiving and giving to those who you hold near Laughing and joking with Christmas Joy Wrapping paper flying revealing another toy

So this Christmas, your tree stands proud and tall Take some time to think of children who have nothing at all No families round a table But a blanket and a sheet No wrapping paper flying, or Christmas food to eat. No love and devotion, I am all alone The Stars are my family as I march on through the snow I look into a window, and see what Christmas is like I live on the streets but I’m still happy jolly M.... That young man found real love, joy and the reality of Jesus inside prison. He identified with a God who was born not in a palace but in the filth and muck of a stable. I pray that whatever your circumstances, whatever your state of mind, that this Christmas you would find real hope joy and love. God bless and Happy Christmas Nick

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To advertise, contact sales@southbristolvoice.co.uk or Ruth on 07590 527664


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26

We're in Business - enterprise thriving in South Bristol despite Covid The Hideout Bristol Mental Health & Fitness Studio

Your perfect holiday. Tailored to you, planned by us.

07590562474 KieranandPhil@NotJustTravel.com KieranandPhil.NotJustTravel.com

The Hideout Bristol is a brand new Mental Health & Fitness Studio in St Judes, BS5.

events throughout the year to raise money for different mental health charities.

We aim to promote the importance of Mental & Physical Health by enabling and supporting self growth in a safe and tranquil environment.

Contact info Louise Fitzgerald, pictured 07432153461 www.thehideoutbristol.co.uk @thehideoutbristol lf.fitness100@gmail.com

We host a variety of classes & workshops for all levels and abilities, plus a number of

White Street Studios, Unit 2, White Street, Bristol BS5 0TS

Not Just Travel Kieran and Phil We launched our travel agency as Coronovirus came into the Public eye. We had so much excitement for sharing our love of travel with customers, and helping friends, family, and customers book unforgettable holidays. There's no denying that COVID has had a massive impact on our business; it's been challenging to promote travel with so much uncertainty. However, we are proud to say that we have worked diligently to action all refunds for our customers whose travel has been affected, and helped many customers plan some once in a lifetime trips for the future.

Bristol Osteopaths W EL L S R O A D

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At Bristol Osteopaths we are dedicated to relieving you of pain and getting you back to the activities you love doing. Our professional team is full of qualified and experienced practitoners, providing healthcare at its best. Our clinics offer osteopathy and a range of other therapies designed to get you back to health. • Osteopathy • Acupuncture • Massage • Chiropody, Foot Health & Podiatry • Reflexology • Naturopathy & Allergy Testing • Hypnotherapy • Ergonomic Workstation Assessment • Counselling

Gift vouchers available for a painfree Christmas Wells Road

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To advertise, contact sales@southbristolvoice.co.uk or Ruth on 07590 527664


December 2020

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27

MARVIN REES, Mayor of Bristol

2

Hope through uncertainty

020 has been a humbling year. It is a year where we have faced a crisis that has tested every system we depend on – education, health, food, transport, and our economy. It is a year which has thrown into sharp relief the inequalities we have lived with for too long. And it is a year which has forced us to live with uncertainty in every part of our lives – uncertainty about our health, our jobs, our education, our ability to see family and friends. We end this year with that uncertainty still hanging over our city. As I write, we do not yet know what restrictions might be in place over the Christmas period, or what further steps we may need to take to reduce the spread of the virus here in Bristol. It has been a year where so many of us have confronted loss. My thoughts and condolences are with all of those who have lost loved ones, and have not been able to grieve together in the way they would wish. I am also struck by the loss people have experienced in lots of other areas of their life: the loss of work, personal relationships, financial security, and community. The impact on our collective mental health has

been as profound as the physical health effects of this virus. And yet, within this year of uncertainty and loss – there is hope. Hope in the medics risking their lives to treat those who contracted the virus. Hope in the thousands of volunteers who stepped up through Can Do Bristol or the hundreds of mutual aid groups that are still binding neighbours together. Hope in the care workers looking after those who are among the most vulnerable with dedication and compassion. Hope in the public transport workers who have kept our city moving. Hope in the cleaners who have kept schools, workplaces

Valid until 31st December 2020

and essential services clean and safe. Hope in the retail workers and food programmes who have keep shops and homes supplied and people fed. Hope in the teachers and school staff who have kept children educated in unprecedented circumstances. Hope in the foster parents who provide love and a home for our city’s most vulnerable children. Hope in the children who adorned windows across the city with rainbows and messages of thanks to our frontline workers. I extend my thanks to everyone who has worked with compassion, skill and patience to nurture hope throughout our city during this testing year. And as the year draws to a close, we see hope again with the possibility of a viable vaccine. We are not there yet. We still need to keep our efforts strong in following guidance and making sure we avoid creating opportunities for this virus to spread. Keeping our distance, washing our hands, wearing masks all remain urgent and essential if we are to reduce the need for further and longer restrictions. If we do so, we can retain the hope that 2021 will be a year where we can harness our collective efforts to rebuild, renew, and celebrate Bristol as a city of hope.

Valid until 31st December 2020

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December 2020

Local History

The Bristol Blitz, June 1940 - August 1942 We continue our serialisation of Memories of a Bristol Boyhood by Knowle resident John Fletcher. This month, John shares his very vivid memories of the Bristol Blitz and how a water leak in his family's Anderson shelter was in fact, a blessing in disguise

M

y first recollection of enemy action was of a lovely sunny mid-week morning. The siren had sounded and we were conducted by our school teachers to the air raid shelters in the school playground. A squadron of Hurricanes was deployed and great dog fight took place in the sky over north Bristol. As I was one of the older boys in the infants’ school I was allowed to stand at the doorway of the shelter and witnessed this fascinating spectacle. The first major raid on Bristol was on the night of November 24, 1940 when the entire commercial centre came under attack. On that Sunday afternoon we had been visiting Grandmother at Castle Green. We were just preparing to walk back to our home in Knowle when at about 6pm the siren sounded and it soon became obvious that this was going to be a serious attack. We made our way to the air raid shelters, situated in the playground of Castle Green School. As it was a Sunday evening there were only about thirty or forty in the shelter, including four or five soldiers, who would take it in turns to venture out of the shelter to give us a progress report. At first the observations were quite light-hearted to keep our spirits

up, but as the hours passed it became obvious that the whole area was affected by burning and collapsing buildings. Eventually two air raid wardens who were in the area looking for casualties came into the shelter and expressed their surprise that there was anyone still there, they had been told that the whole area had been evacuated. As the school was ablaze, we were instructed to leave immediately and the only escape route was along Castle Green, down Castle Mill Street to Broadweir where we would be looked after. This journey of just over a quarter of a mile was most hazardous as the route was engulfed by burning buildings and pieces of rubble and burning materials were dropping from the buildings which lined our path. It became a family joke in later years that my mother had covered my head with a waxed-paper carrier bag to protect me from the flames. Looking back it was probably quite a smart move by my mother as the larger bits of debris would have bounced off me and I would have been in more danger from the smaller sparks which would have lodged in my hair. We stayed in our safer shelter until the early hours of the next morning when we picked our way

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had no news of them for several weeks and feared the worst, but eventually we heard that they had been taken into temporary accommodation in a relief centre. Our next calamitous experience occurred on the evening of December 6, 1940. On that evening the siren had sounded at about 6pm and as our Anderson shelter at home had become half filled with water, my sister and I went to the next door shelter. Mother arrived home from her new job as a shop assistant at the Co-op in St John's Lane, about 6.30pm, hurriedly placed the shopping on the kitchen table and joined us in the shelter. The sounds of the air raid became very intense and seemed heaviest over our south Bristol house. Later in the evening there came a horrible rushing noise and a high

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through the streets of still burning buildings and made our way back to Knowle. On the way along the Wells Road we passed Holy Nativity Church, 90 per cent of which had been reduced to rubble leaving only the part around the high altar with the very impressive semi domed-like roof still topped by the cross. My lasting impressions of that night were the noise of the fires being fed by the draught that the fire and wind created, the smell of burning and escaping gas and the deep red which covered the whole sky. The official report states that there were 889 casualties of which 200 were fatal. It is commonly thought that had the raid taken place the evening before, Saturday, the casualty count would have been ten times higher. In the panic that ensued when we were ordered from the shelter, we lost contact with my grandmother and Uncle Jim so the following morning my mother returned to the city centre to try to locate them. We

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Holy Nativity Church - it was still smouldering when John and his family returned to their home in Knowle in the early hours of November 25. A gas main was ablaze in the road nearby.

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Local History explosive bomb dropped directly on top of our shelter at home and the one at number 42. The noise was ear-splitting. The explosion was so forceful that it broke the bolted steel sections of the shelter apart and some of the earth fell on top of us. It also blew the back of our house completely away, leaving it uninhabitable. The following morning it was pitiful to see the shopping that Mum had placed on the kitchen table still there but covered with bricks, plaster and rubble. It is very sad to relate that Sid Weaver and his son Roy of number 42 were immediately killed and the only remains of their bodies that were found were a foot encased in a boot. Fortunately Mr Weaver had the foresight to arrange for his wife and three young children to stay with relatives in the country. Sid and Roy Weaver are commemorated on the plaque situated in the ruins of St Peter’s Church in Castle Park. Thankfully, due to about 6 inches of water, the names of my

Castle Street, Bristol’s busiest shopping street, November 25, 1940. It was never rebuilt and is now part of Castle Park

mother, sister and myself are not recorded on that plaque. We were unable to get back into our house that night so in the early hours of December 7 we were taken to a local church hall. We were given breakfast and even after 70 years it still remains in my memory as the worst food I have ever tasted! Later that morning we were allowed to return to our house. We had nowhere to live and no way of taking the undamaged furniture, so we just left it all in situ and

picked up the clothes and any small items we could carry. In some ways we were quite fortunate as the financial struggle my mother had through the mid-thirties meant that we had very few possessions. We spent the next few weeks living with my Aunt Mary. We eventually moved to a house that had been fire-bombed, which meant that the upstairs rooms were not in use but the downstairs accommodation was habitable. As compensation for the loss

of all our belongings, the government awarded us the princely sum of £79-10s with the added bonus that we would eventually be able to buy Utility furniture. Our salvation came from Sister Edith Fielder, the District Nurse who had lodged with us a few years earlier. She had heard of our plight and was in touch with an old school friend of hers who lived in a very large country house at Tickenham near Clevedon, who was looking for a live-in cook/housekeeper and arranged for mother to be interviewed which resulted in her taking the job and beginning a new chapter in our lives.

We would love to hear similar tales and see photos from the period. Please email to news@southbristolvoice. co.uk or post to South Bristol Voice, 111 Broadfield Rd Knowle Bristol BS42UX. All items will be safely returned.

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December 2020

News

Sarah's marathon in memory of inspiring friend Sarah Bird, left, and friend Chris Seeley, right

A Bedminster woman has raised an outstanding sum of money in memory of her friend after completing this year's virtual London Marathon. Sarah Bird, from Bedminster, was up against the elements on October 4 as she completed the 26.2 miles by running laps around Bristol's harbour. At the time the Voice went to print, she had raised £5,923 for cancer charity Penny Brohn UK. Sarah dedicated the run to her friend Chris Seeley, who died aged 48 of a brain tumour. Before she passed away, Chris said that in her next life, she would like to run a marathon. Both Sarah and Chris benefitted from the brilliant support of Penny Brohn UK, as just months after Chris lost her life, Sarah was diagnosed with breast cancer. Sarah, who has now been free of cancer for almost five years, said: "Both Chris and I enjoyed the invaluable support of Penny

Brislington Labour Party wishes to say a big thank you to everyone who has kept our city running throughout the pandemic Your council candidates for 2021: • Councillor Tim Rippington • Candidate Carolyn Magson • Candidate Rob Logan • Candidate Katja Hornchen

We wish everyone a Happy Christmas and really hope to get out and meet you all next year! Contact us via email at: cllr.tim.rippington@bristol.gov.uk or brislingtonlabour@gmail.com To advertise, contact sales@southbristolvoice.co.uk or Ruth on 07590 527664


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News Brohn UK. The people and services offered are a lifeline to many people who are living with curable and incurable cancers. "It offers practical, emotional, social and spiritual support, to improve quality of life and to manage the fear and uncertainty that a cancer diagnosis often brings." Speaking about her friend before the marathon, Sarah said: "Chris inspired many people during her short life, including me. She had the most powerful and encouraging "Yesssssss" I have ever encountered. I will try to run these 26.2 miles in her memory, in solidarity with all that she held dear. She was damn good company, so I'm sincerely hoping that she is going to be with me in spirit." All Penny Brohn's services are offered free. To donate to Sarah's cause, visit: www. justgiving.com/fundraising/ sarahandchrismarathon2020. For further information about Penny Brohn UK visit www. pennybrohn.org.uk.

Sarah completing the virtual London Marathon on October 4

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December 2020

Advertising feature

High fryers! Chris and Sam's devised a recipe for success in Totterdown ... now North Street will have its very own Farrows fish and chip shop

H

aving run Totterdown’s Farrows fish and chip shop for the last three years, owners Chris Reed and Wasim ‘Sam’ Nakoura are taking their growing business to the next level. Farrows has gone from strength to strength, says Chris, and now is the time to expand. “We have a great customer base in Totterdown, but the shop has just got too small to serve them all,” he says. “We’ve built on the existing trade the previous owner had, and we’re now at the point where we need another location.” Chris and Sam are taking over what is currently Fishminster on North Street, and will rebrand it as another Farrows. “Customers can expect the same quality of food and service at the new shop as they can in Totterdown,” says Chris. “We’re hoping it’ll be easier than ever to get your Farrows fish and chips as there will be two locations in South Bristol.”

Fishminster was largely chosen for its location. “There’s a great community in Bedminster, like there is in Totterdown, and the location of North Street means lots of people can walk to the shop – they don’t need to worry about getting transport.” Chris and Sam are planning to open the new Farrows early in 2021, with a provisional aim for the end of February. Farrows is well-known in the area, not only for its award-winning fish and chips (the Totterdown shop won a Good Food Award for both 2020 and 2021) but also for offering gluten-free options, which people come from around the city to try. Farrows in Totterdown is open seven nights a week from 5pm-9pm, and also offers delivery through Just Eat. l See @Farrows4fish on Facebook and @ farrowsfishandchips on Instagram to keep up with Chris and Sam’s foodie developments.

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History is on your doorstep! Read about:

• The day Bedminster was burned to the ground

• The South Bristol family who helped Þre up the Steam Age

• Totterdown’s reluctant hero of the trenches

• Dodging bombs when the Blitz came to South Bristol

As featured in

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In these extraordinary times, we can find strength and meaning in creativity

Share your words, poems, stories, memories, melodies or even songs describing your experience of this extraordinary year. As our city’s people have raised their voices through dark times before: together, we can write a new song for Bristol.

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News

Council tax rise could be five per cent in 2021 by Rich Coulter and BBC LDRS staff for South Bristol Voice Residents in South Bristol could face a five per cent council tax hike from April, it has been announced. The city council has launched a public consultation to find out how much householders are willing to pay, as the local authority continues to grapple with the cost of the pandemic. Options range from no increase to three per cent to cover the cost of general council services, including education, children’s services, waste collection, street lighting, road maintenance, parks, libraries and homelessness, plus an additional two per cent towards paying for adult social care. For most households, a three per cent rise would mean from £41 a year in Band A. and more in other bands. Earlier this year, councillors voted for a 3.99 per cent increase from April 2020, taking the annual bill for an average Band D

Council average spend on services per household, including support the council gets from central Government property to £1,758.28, plus smaller amounts to pay for the police and fire service which set their own precepts. Bristol City Council says the coronavirus pandemic has seen many more people needing its support, such as help with

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council tax, business rates and grants, food packages and vouchers and emergency accommodation, while the crisis has reduced its income. The authority says it aims to avoid cutting any essential services but council tax may need

to go up to ensure these can continue. Deputy mayor Cllr Craig Cheney said: “In the face of a global pandemic, we, like all councils around the country are facing unprecedented financial pressures which leave us with a difficult choice – do we cut essential services or ask people who can afford it to pay a little bit more? Before the pandemic we were one of the very few local authorities to offer the council tax reduction scheme, meaning people only pay what they can afford, and in some cases that means not paying council tax at all. We continue to offer this service for those who need it.” You can give your views on options at www.bristol.gov.uk/ budget2021-2022 The consultation closes on December 28. More information about the council tax reduction scheme is at www.bristol.gov.uk/ benefits-financial-help/ council-tax-reduction

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News in brief n GRANTS of up to £10,000 are currently available to regenerate underused shops, cafes, studios and offices in East Street and adjacent street. Funding for the scheme is provided by the West of England Combined Authority's (WECA) Love our High Streets fund. Applications are assessed on merit, job creation and the applicant’s own investment into the business. Full details are available at www.bedminster. org.uk/loveourhighstreet n BARNEY Smith, who looks after Victoria Park's community garden (at the back of the bowling club's clubhouse), has made an appeal to the public for donations of herbaceous plants and paving slabs. Plants should be wrapped up to keep the roots moist and left at the back of the bed on the path or brought along on Thursday afternoons. Labelling them is not essential but helpful. The garden is also in need of broken paving slabs a least 30cm by 30cm to use as stepping stones/paths within the garden.

n A DRIVE-THROUGH coronavirus mobile testing unit has opened at Brislington Park and Ride in response to the significant rise of cases in Bristol. Testing at the site will run on a strictly appointment-only basis and is a drive-through site. Current Government guidance is that only those with symptoms should have a test, which can be booked at nhs.uk/coronavirus, or by calling 119. n ARE YOU someone special, willing to take up a long-term leadership role and facilitate BS3 Helping Others (BS3HO) group’s ongoing work? As with all roles in BS3HO this role is voluntary. To view a description of the work of BS3HO, visit: bit. ly/3kPzWoz. If interested in the role, get in touch with Catherine Wescott at bs3helpingothers@ gmail.com for an initial, informal discussion. n THE ARTS Society Bristol invites readers for lectures on a wide range of arts related subjects, given by specialists in their own field. These are

currently being delivered online and the society welcomes new members. The lecture on December 8 is on 'The Lute within Old Master Paintings', and on December 15, 'Jewellery and Fashion 1890 to 1929'. For more information visit theartssocietybristol.org.uk. n THE POPULAR Call and Collect library service will return to seven libraries, including Marksbury Road, when lockdown lifts this month. From December 3, people will be able to access the service, including reservations and a new quick book bundle offer, with Central Library also open for computer access. The other library branches operating the Call and Collect service include Henleaze, Fishponds, Stockwood, Henbury and Bishopston. For information visit www.bristol.gov.uk/libraries or search Bristol Libraries online.

Got news? Email us at news@ southbristolvoice.co.uk

Declutter this season with new online swap shop A free online swapping community has been launched to enable people to declutter or locate second-hand items at no cost and get rewarded for doing so. Swopz Shop, founded by mums Jasmine de Savigny and Claudia Effra-Hume, aims to reduce waste in the local community - and with Christmas around the corner, they hope to make a dent in the amount spent on unwanted gifts and plastic packaging. The idea is simple - unwanted items are posted online, points are received and then spent on items needed. Points can be gained in other ways too such as by signing up, posting swaps, accepting offers, sharing swaps and referring friends. For more information and to receive helpful advice on how to reduce your Christmas carbon footprint, visit: swopzshop.com.

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News

Charity ready to distribute 1 million meals to needy South Bristol-based food charity FareShare South West has announced FoodStock 2020: a campaign to build a stockpile of emergency food, with the infrastructure to deliver it to critical frontline organisations and those in need through a difficult winter. The FoodStock 2020 operation, which will source food from across the food industry at scale, aims to build a stockpile big enough to distribute food for 1 million meals in just 3 months and will be housed at the charity’s secondary warehouse near Ashton Gate Stadium – formerly used by Dreams Beds. Julian Mines, pictured,, CEO of FareShare South West says: “The move now to amass a stock of ambient food and begin planning the logistics of redistributing is essential to make sure our city and wider region does not go hungry in the difficult winter months ahead.

"We’re not waiting until a full lockdown hits or until demand spikes to astronomical levels. "We’re preparing now. Whilst we hope the economic fallout and impact of a second wave are not as catastrophic as some predict, we’d be naïve not to prepare for that. "Expanding by five times our capacity back in March 2020 to meet sudden need was only possible thanks to temporary infrastructure afforded by a number of organisations, funders offering temporary support and by financial donations from the public. That’s now ended, and we need to ensure we have the funds, infrastructure and resource this time round to keep people fed in the winter ahead. "This time around we must be more strategic, coordinated and targeted to make sure those in the most critical situations are prioritised, and we want to go further in serving and supporting

frontline groups. We’re relying on the power of Bristol – a city brimming with care and compassion – to come together to help us get this centralised emergency solution to the food insecurity we anticipate, off the ground. "We are not looking for donations of food but instead for funding from local businesses, public donations where people feel able, and even volunteering – including to help us operate a food parcel packing hub, located on the mezzanine level of our secondary warehouse. "This space will centralise food parcel packing for the city and wider region and allow our food to go to organisations and initiatives of all sizes.” To learn more about FoodStock 2020, donate to the campaign and find out how you can help visit: www. faresharesouthwest.org.uk/ foodstock-2020

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December 2020

Letters to the Editor

Email your letter to news@southbristolvoice.co.uk or post to 111 Broadfield Rd Knowle Bristol B42UX Please keep letters brief, no more than 250 words - we reserve the right to edit letters

Hooray for tower blocks approval I am DELIGHTED to hear at last the Little Paradise plans have been approved! Brilliant news. I moved to Windmill Hill just over 3 years ago and in that short time I have seen Bedminster decline. Since Catherine's House was given a fresh new look it has made my heart sing. And the tower block (which looks into my garden) has also seen a lick of paint! Oh my, what a great new look Bedminster is getting! I am sick of hearing 'WHaM' turn down ALL development proposals with comments and points like 'the living space is not big enough ' ... blah blah blah. Well, let me tell you WHaM, you don't have to live in it! Let other people have the choice to decide if they want to live there? My house is tiny! One person at a

time in the kitchen - my rent is £925pm for 2 beds. House value £280k! So let's just crack on, get some development, invest and improve this wonderful local part of Bristol. It really is very much needed and I very much look forward to seeing it grow! Hip hip hooray! Otis Murch, Windmill Hill

Help protect our hedgehogs Hedgehogs are among the most loved and endangered animals in England. Their decline over the last 50 years has mirrored that of the tiger in Asia. The BS3 Wildlife Group is therefore establishing a Hedgehog Task Group of local people. This group will look at where hedgehogs are still to be found in BS3. We know, for example, that there are colonies in Greville Smyth

VET BLOG with Avon Lodge • Poinsettia, holly, mistletoe, yew How to keep and lilies are poisonous. your pets safe ‘Pet-safe’ parts of roast are; white boneless meat, swede, carrots, this Christmas parsnips, sprouts, broccoli and Amy Jennett, clinical director at Avon Lodge

A

von Lodge Vets are here to keep your fur-family happy and healthy throughout Christmas. Keep them safe by: • Putting chocolates and mincepies out of reach. These are pet-poison causing kidney failure. • Pigs-in-blankets and gravy may result in Boxing Day tummy-upsets or pancreatitis. They are high-fat and often contain poisonous onion. • Avoid cooked bones, which splinter and cause gut-blockages.

cauliflower, kept plain without butter or onions.

The smallest amount is a huge treat, so remember to balance this with WALKIES! Boxing day walks are a highlight, plan your route and enjoy quality time.

Poppy Day

and Victoria Parks, but we are unsure of other green spaces. We have at least one Hedgehog Street (read more, page 55). Wildlife group members report various sightings, often with pictures and videos, across the area and some are putting out food (is it the right kind?) and building shelters. Some people are poisoning slugs which are a major food source for hogs. As well as identifying parts of BS3 where hedgehogs seem to be still active, the task group will propose ways of making our area safer for hedgehogs (and probably other creatures too). More wild areas in parks? More Hedgehog Streets? How do we turn the decline into an increase? We already have a few members for our task group, but more are welcome. We hope to have a plan by early next year when the hedgehogs of BS3 begin to wake from their hibernation. We hope too that other neighbourhoods will follow our lead. Contact us at mywildbedminster@ virginmedia.com. Ben Barker, Secretary, BS3 Wildlife Group

To remember all those soldiers out there, Aged young and old, Who fought and died so bravely Out there in the cold. Unknown soldiers far and wide, Dying by the riverside, Their last words clear and bright, Remember me and this brutal sight. Poem by Elodie Amiel, 8, Knowle

Christmas may look a little different this year, but potential visitors and decorations alter house smells and layout. Creating safe hiding places, anxiety-relieving plug-ins and supplements can help reduce unwanted stress. Happy Christmas.

Local resident Kevin Lindegaard has impressed us with his amazing Halloween pumpkin carvings of his pets (L-R) Darwin, Tiger Lily and Kepler. Spooktacular!

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December 2020

southbristolvoice

KARIN SMYTH, MP for Bristol South

39

Chinks of light after such a difficult year

E

ven as the tins of Quality Street start to appear in the shops, and kids begin the final draft of their letters to Santa, it's very clear that this coming Christmas will be unlike any other in living memory. In some ways, it feels very difficult to celebrate when we live in a climate of such uncertainty and fear. Thousands of families are grieving lost loved ones, and many more still are suffering with the pernicious after-effects of ‘long Covid’. We know, too, that many people have struggled mentally due to periods of isolation and loneliness in lockdown, as well as the economic uncertainty that the virus has precipitated. Across Bristol South, many retail, hospitality and travel businesses will be dreading what would normally be their busiest time of year. Instead of welcoming festive crowds ready to spend a year's carefully considered Christmas savings, employers and employees will be anxiously calculating and recalculating how long their

reserves will last in the face of ongoing restrictions. And far harder still are the unimaginable difficulties confronting those people who have lost their jobs amidst the pandemic, through absolutely no fault of their own. But as difficult as this past year has been - and as Christmas will be for so many - there are nonetheless reasons for us to be cautiously optimistic about what the new year will bring. The first is something that has constantly given me hope and cause for optimism even at the hardest points of this year - our fantastic community in Bristol South. The most difficult times bring out the best in people, and we’ve seen this across our constituency in 2020. Whether it was the volunteers delivering food to those shielding, the neighbourhood organisations that formed to look out for the most vulnerable, or the amazing key workers of our NHS and other vital public services, the pandemic has shown just how many kind, compassionate and public-spirited citizens live amongst us. I am grateful to each and every one of them. The second thing giving us cause for hope is the news that the Pfizer vaccine is showing positive levels of effectiveness against Covid-19. Of course there are still - quite

rightly - regulatory hurdles to be overcome. And rolling out the vaccine will require a massive logistical effort. But we have still taken a significant step. Although we were optimistic, we did not previously know whether or not our brilliant scientists would be able to develop a vaccine that offered protection against Covid-19 - now we know that they can. The vaccine breakthrough - borne as it is of an internationally collaborative effort - reinforces a growing sense of faith across the world that by coming together to fight our biggest challenges, we can make progress. So while this Christmas will of course be unusual - and so incredibly hard for so many people - let's try and take hope from the chinks of light that have appeared this year. If we’re able, let's resolve to reach out to a struggling neighbour or check in on our vulnerable family and friends. Let's show our gratitude for the brilliant key workers who have out themselves at risk to protect us. And let's put our faith in the power of scientific progress and of international cooperation and collaboration, to lead to a brighter 2021. Twitter: @karinsmyth Facebook: KarinSmythMP Website: www.karinsmyth.com

Bristol Budget 21/22 Tell us your views on proposed council tax options Complete the survey online bristol.gov.uk/budget2021-2022. The council tax consultation closes on 28 December. For a paper copy or other alternative format email consultation@bristol.gov.uk or call 0117 922 2848. If you are on a low income, council tax reduction could help pay your council tax bill. Find out more at bristol.gov.uk/council-tax-reduction

Got a story for South Bristol Voice? Call Rich on 0777 555 0607 or email news@southbristolvoice.co.uk


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December 2020

Advertising feature

Why becoming a Kumon Instructor in Bristol could be your ideal next career choice…

K

umon is a global study method, tailored to suit each child's needs. Having evolved over 60+ years, our maths and English worksheet-based study programmes have been honed to best help students succeed. In fact, the 2020 results of an independent study undertaken by the Education Policy Institute showed that studying with Kumon delivers a proven academic advantage. On average, UK Kumon students were found to be over a year ahead of the national average, and over six months ahead of peers in their math’s learning at the end of primary school. Could you play an essential role in children’s learning? Not only do Kumon Instructors help children develop their maths and English skills, but they also nurture their ability to learn with confidence and to overcome challenges for

themselves. Kumon Instructors enable students to gain the skills necessary to succeed in their studies. Having a passion for education and a love of seeing children discover the joy of learning for themselves is therefore a must! Be your own business owner. As well as working with children, you are in the

driving seat of your own business. Having a proactive attitude and desire to succeed are key, as are organisational skills and a positive approach to communication. Join the Kumon network. Training is provided centrally and Kumon’s local team in Bristol will support you as you set up your business – offering both practical advice and additional training on an ongoing basis. Become a Kumon Instructor – what’s stopping you? Kumon Instructors are amazing people who work hard to inspire the next generation to be all that they can be. Kumon franchisees are passionate about education, enthusiastic communicators and proactive business owners. To find out more, and to take your next steps to becoming a Kumon Instructor visit our website www.kumon.co.uk/franchising/ or call us on 01454202458.

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December 2020

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News

Scaled-back plans for shopping centre criticised

by Rich Coulter and BBC LDRS staff for South Bristol Voice A developer has drawn up fresh plans to transform one of Bristol’s most run-down shopping centres after its earlier proposal was rejected by councillors. The latest plans have drawn scorn from campaigners who say developers Firmstoner are 'chancing their arm' with this latest move. Firmstone’s initial plans for the St Catherine’s Place shopping centre in Bedminster proved controversial and were thrown out by Bristol City Council earlier this year. The local development company had wanted to build tower blocks with 205 new homes, redevelop the shopping centre and include a cinema there. But while there was widespread support for the regeneration, there were many objections to the height of the tower blocks, and the plans were refused. Now Firmstone has submitted scaled-back plans, having consulted with the community, and hopes city planners will approve its new designs for a shorter and smaller development. However, the company has also appealed the decision by the council to refuse its earlier plans, and has said it will “need to take stock” if the planning inspectorate upholds its appeal. It is also, with the new application, seeking outline permission to “potentially convert the redundant vacant retail units in the centre of the site for alternative uses including residential in the longer term, should retail demand continue to decline”. Under the rejected plans, five resident blocks between three and 17 storeys tall would have provided 205 homes at the neglected East Street site. The new plans, drawn up by a different architecture firm, include 180 new homes spread across three buildings up to 14 storeys tall with some new homes in converted shop space. According to Firmstone, the tallest new building on the corner of Dalby Avenue is not only shorter but has a smaller footprint and is set back further from the road.

Artist's impression of part of the proposed development

The submitted plans show the buildings vary between seven and 14 storeys, with the shortest on a neglected site with an old underpass between Catherine’s House and Dalby Avenue. As before, the residential part of the development will provide a mix of one, two and threebedroom homes. But the cinema has been dropped from the plans and there are fewer new shops. However, the company is promising to refurbish shop fronts on East Street and create more public open space. Residents will have a central courtyard garden to share, some will have their own gardens, and there are plans for a new pocket park on Mill Lane as well as a new landscaped walking and cycling route from Dalby Road to Mill Lane and East Street. Designed by Bristol architects Stride Treglown, the development will create “a new and inviting public entrance into St Catherine’s Place”, according to Firmstone. Francis Firmstone, director of the development company, said: “Bedminster is a hugely popular, vibrant and exciting area of Bristol but it is in dire need of new homes and investment. “Our proposals for 180 much-needed and thoughtfullydesigned new homes, along with the development’s newlyrefurbished retail units and shopping centre entrance, will help return East Street to its former glory, making it a thriving area for shopping, leisure and hospitality as we have seen on nearby North Street.”

The new plans have already drawn the “strong support” of local businesses in the form of the Bedminster BID, which backed the earlier proposal. At the time of writing, no objections had been lodged. It is not yet known when the proposals will be considered by planners. A spokersperson for Windmill Hill & Malago Community Planning Group (WhAm) said: "Last year Firmstone Consortia proposed a development including a 22 storey building, which was reduced to 17 storeys for the planning application. That was refused permission in February this year and now a new plan has been submitted including 14 storeys. It is difficult to engage seriously with this latest version since Firmstone has simultaneously appealed against the earlier refusal, an appeal requiring a four day enquiry which is bound to involve costs to the public purse. It looks as if Firmstone is chancing its arm to achieve the maximum it can get away with rather than the best it is capable of. "The current proposal is for a seven phase development but Firmstone gives no details for phases 5 to 7. If the appeal is successful, they will not need to. We are told that the earlier phases will involve a re-vamp of the East Street retail end and the provision of up to 180 apartments. Any new housing is welcome but most of the apartments will be small; few, if any, will be family-friendly and there is no affordable housing.

"There seems little point in the council having a policy on affordable housing if a developer can so easily avoid the responsibility to provide it. "St Catherine’s House, already built and occupied, is the tallest building in the area, with the exception of Northfield House, which no-one has ever suggested is an example to follow. It is even slightly taller than the landmark Robinson Building and nothing between it and the harbourside is taller. And yet, this not unpleasant block of flats will be dwarfed and overshadowed by the 14 storeys planned to go beside it, to say nothing of how closely the new building will encroach on the three storey residences in Stafford Street, already facing the prospect of the 17 storey Dandara development on the other side of their street. "The council turned down the application for a group of large buildings on the former Pring St Hill site between Malago Road and the railway line on the grounds that it would make for an ‘oppressive wall of development’. A similar criticism surely applies to the proposed line of development from Little Paradise to the start of Bedminster Parade. Bedminster Green is accurately described as an ‘inner urban area’ because of its proximity to the city centre. That should in no way imply that it is already some sort of inner urban jungle of high rises and overcrowding. Nor should it become so. We have a choice."

Got a story for South Bristol Voice? Call Rich on 0777 555 0607 or email news@southbristolvoice.co.uk


Here’s to a cosy Christmas at home‌ Wishing you a happy & festive Christmas from all at Ocean. To advertise, contact sales@southbristolvoice.co.uk or Ruth on 07590 527664


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Advertising feature

Delivering support for South Bristol businesses YTKO has 40 years’ experience of delivering a wide range of business start-up and growth support across the UK, both in the public and private sector. Working with over 22,500 businesses, they know more than most about how to build a resilient and sustainable business. In March of this year, YTKO worked with Bristol City Council to rapidly mobilise ‘Covid-19 Resilience Support’ by setting up a free helpline and having expert advisors available as small businesses needed them. The team guided business owners through the complicated and ever-changing communication and funding schemes, to identify what was right for that business and how to unlock it. YTKO also worked with businesses to pin-point new revenue streams, exploring e-commerce, pivoting and diversifying their services as well as accountability and confidence building.

L-R, Lydia Stevens, YTKO; Cllr Asher Craig, Deputy Mayor - Bristol City Council; Aliu Bello, Managing Director - CCBED; Toby Howkins, YTKO; and Andy Weeks, YTKO This support is needed now more than ever. As part of YTKO’s South Bristol Enterprise Support programme, they have now launched a Business Resilience Support service, to work with SME’s to help increase business survival and recovery

rates in the region. By applying their knowledge and experience from dealing with hundreds of Bristol based businesses over the last few months, they will create a tailored package to meet your needs and business ambitions.

Funded by ERDF and WECA, this service is completely free for South Bristol SMEs to access. Applications are open now! Alongside this, our awardwinning OutSet programme has supported more than 29,000 individuals to explore enterprise and help to start 7,000 new businesses. If you are currently out of work or furloughed, or exploring new opportunities, this fully funded service is running regular ‘Introduction to Enterprise’ courses, to help you investigate your business startup ideas and give you the toolkit to launch. South Bristol Enterprise Support programme is a Bristol City Council led consortium funded by the European Regional Development Fund and the West of England Combined Authority. YTKO South Bristol Website www.westofengland.ytko.com/ business-support-in-bristol/ south-bristol/

Business Resilience Support by In this hugely challenging trading environment, would you welcome an independent opinion on your business strategy, from an experienced business coach? YTKO can provide a structured, 12 week programme to discuss all aspects of your operation, from Sales & Marketing, to overall Strategy and Planning; all delivered in regular weekly phone or Zoom calls lasting no more than an hour; at no cost to you. (Our service is fully funded locally by WECA & ERDF) We have a successful track record of providing effective business support & consultancy to SMEs, which has seldom been more critical than it is today.

To find out more, contact Andy Weeks on 07825 661 365 or southbristol@ytko.com. Places are limited, so register today to ensure your business remains resilient to the challenges the U.K. economy is facing.

Got a story for South Bristol Voice? Call Rich on 0777 555 0607 or email news@southbristolvoice.co.uk


FESTIVE WASTE COLLECTIONS Over the holidays your waste collection dates change slightly to allow for bank holidays. Check when we’ll be coming to you on the calendar below. Thank you and happy holidays!

Your usual collection day Fri 25 Dec Mon 28 Dec Tue 29 Dec Wed 30 Dec Thur 31 Dec Fri 1 Jan Mon 4 Jan Tue 5 Jan Wed 6 Jan Thur 7 Jan Fri 8 Jan Mon 11 Jan Tue 12 Jan Wed 13 Jan Thur 14 Jan Fri 15 Jan

Put yo with y ur TREE ou our fir t bin co st wheelie lle from 1 ction 2 Jan

Revised collection day Tue 29 Dec Wed 30 Dec Thur 31 Dec Sat 2 Jan Mon 4 Jan Tue 5 Jan

DOWNLOAD Never miss a collection – download your 2021 collection calendar from: bristolwastecompany.co.uk/festive

Wed 6 Jan Thur 7 Jan Fri 8 Jan Sat 9 Jan Mon 11 Jan Tue 12 Jan Wed 13 Jan

DON’T FORGET You can take trees to your nearest Recycling Centre. Garden and bulky waste services pause over the Christmas period. For top tips and festive hacks visit: bristolwastecompany.co.uk/festive

Thur 14 Jan Fri 15 Jan Sat 16 Jan

Normal collections from Mon 18 Januar y

Why not cut out and keep this advert as a handy reminder

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December 2020

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Redcatch Community Garden

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The current marquee, left, and how the new building will look, right

Replacing our old marqueee 2020 has not been at all what anyone expected and at Redcatch Community Garden it has been no different. Like many other organisations around us we have struggled to keep going to maintain our fantastic community resource and safeguard roles for our staff and volunteers. We had ambitions to replace our poor old marquee with a new structure which has electricity, lighting, heating and does not fall over in the wind! We know from those who visit that what we provide in terms of offering a great place where people can come together, learn, relax, try new activities and enhance their physical health and mental wellbeing is so very important, now, more than ever. With this in mind, we decided to press on with our plans. We needed to raise ÂŁ40,000 and applied to Enovert Community Trust for grant funding. To apply we needed to raise 10 per cent of the funding ourselves. For this we turned to the community for their support and they responded generously by donating ÂŁ6,500 through our comedy night, Belly Laughs, and our Crowdfunder, with rewards provided by our suppliers and local businesses: Mad4Tools, Extract Coffee Roasters, Tarr's Ice Cream, Cakesmiths, Happymess, Mindful Crafts and Musu Barber Shop. Our Enovert funding bid was successful and, together with the funding from the community, we can now start to build our new structure. This means so much to the project and what we can offer for everyone: all year activities, workshops, events, indoor eating space, working with groups and schools. We would like to say a massive thank you to everyone for your support and we hope for good things to come in 2021!

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Schools feature - Parson Street Primary School

I

n times like these it is very easy to become very inwardlooking as we try and establish routines around school, making sure that children and staff are safe while on our site. However, alongside all of this, we are very conscious of our need to look outwards to our community and make sure that we are continuing to build up strong links with our families and local area. Our curriculum at Parson Street is very focused on these local links, with lots of emphasis on where we live and who we connect with. Recently we have held both a local history week and an inter-faith awareness week, as these are important aspects of who we are as a school community. Some examples of how classes engage with our community include: • Our local history week included some creative Bristol artwork to see how our community has been built up, and looked at photos from when our parents were at school. • In inter-faith awareness week, we had a former teacher come and teach a Hindi dance to our Reception and Nursery

December 2020

Linking with our community

children – they had a fantastic time learning this and getting physical! • We have recently voted on which local charity to support as a school over the year from any fundraising we are able to do - we are glad to have chosen the Grand Appeal - Bristol Children’s Hospital Charity, and look forward to being creative in raising some money for them over the year. We continue to have a great time connecting with places that children know, and some that they are becoming aware of, as well as celebrating the varied lives of people who live near and attend Parson Street. Headteacher Ms Louise Hopcroft, We would love for you to find out more about what our children are learning, so do give us a follow on @parsonstreet or check our website for more information. We are also very keen to show off our wonderful school to parents applying for Reception places next year – do contact the office to find out more, on 0117 9030226. Pictured, art from local history week and below, a Hindi dance

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December 2020

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Discover our EYFS Department

The Hive: Nursery Pre-School

A year-round, educaaonal care provision, from 8.00am-6.00pm ‘It is evident that you have the needs of the children at the heart of all you do.’ (Quote from QIF Inspeccon, November 2020)

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www.cliionhigh.co.uk | 0117 933 9087 | admissions@cliionhigh.co.uk Got a story for South Bristol Voice? Call Rich on 0777 555 0607 or email news@southbristolvoice.co.uk


December 2020

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Covid-19 news

Cemetery is a 'boon' - and it must be kept alive In response to the hundreds of events cancelled at Arnos Vale Cemetery this year, the charity running the local amenity has launched an appeal to raise funds to reduce the shortfall. As a working cemetery, there can be an assumption that Arnos Vale receives regular council or government funding. However, this is not the case. Arnos Vale Cemetery Trust is hoping to raise £12,000 during the appeal. Arnos Vale CEO, Ellie Collier said: "As a small charity the impact of Covid 19 cannot be underestimated. After a hugely difficult year, it’s really uplifting seeing our visitors having a lovely time on site. "But we would normally generate over 70% of our income through our events, shop and room hire so the financial impact on us has been huge. "The whole team takes huge pride in looking after and sharing

An aerial view of Arnos Vale Cemetery, in Bath Road

this special place. I would like to thank all those who have donated and supported us so far, your support has been essential during these incredibly difficult times. "The pandemic has shown us just how important it is to have access to green spaces in the city; many people have found comfort in beautiful places."

Hugh, a regular visitor to Arnos Vale, said: "Being able to visit has had such a positive impact on me, my health and outlook... It's been a great boon in an otherwise dark year." Fundraising officer, Sophie Kinsman said: "Day to day, we rely on a very small team and our many dedicated volunteers

to maintain the space for our communities. "We rely entirely on the generosity of the public - and the income from our private and public events, which are currently all cancelled - to keep this historic gem open. "By supporting our Christmas Appeal, you will be helping bring comfort and joy to the many people who rely on the cemetery for walks, reflection, wellbeing and those whose loved ones are remembered here." To show your love for Arnos Vale, the team, volunteers and visitors, you can do so in one of two ways: donate online or hold a virtual Christmas fundraiser. Find out more by visiting the campaign page virginmoneygiving.com/fund/ arnosvalechristmasappeal. Arnos Vale also plans to sell Christmas trees on site and asks people to phone 0117 971 9117 in advance to place an order.

News

The Voice reviews 'UK's first' pizza vending machine by Charley Rogers When it comes to takeaway pizza, most of the time, convenience is key. So right off the bat, Pizza Bella’s West Street vending machine, dispensing freshly cooked, hot pizzas in three minutes, is at the top of the leaderboard. But of course getting pizza quickly is one thing; getting good pizza is often something quite different. I was not disappointed. I ordered the vegan veggie pizza, which came with tomato sauce, vegan cheese, sweetcorn, red onion, mushrooms and red

pepper, and had a garlic herb mix on top. First of all, the vending machine is very easy to use. The large touchscreen has easy-tofollow instructions and large buttons (there is nothing worse than a tiny touchscreen that makes it impossible to pick the right button). There are also a number of different topping choices, including a good range of vegan pizzas – complete with vegan cheese – which impressed me, as sometimes it can be difficult to find vegan pizza at a restaurant, let alone a 24-hour vending machine. The pizza base is thin-crust, and feels freshly baked. The outer crust is crispy and appears stonebaked, while the centre of the pizza is soft and has that oh-so-satisfying sag under the weight of the toppings and melted cheese. The vegan cheese was great. It was smooth and mellow, and had melted perfectly over the whole pizza. Topping coverage was also impressive, with a good amount of veggies evenly distributed, which for me is essential. If there

was one element of the pizza I had to criticize, it would be the tomato sauce. It was tasty, but a little tangy for my taste – it didn’t taste as fresh as the crust and toppings, and was more like puree than passata. But still, not half bad. I very much enjoyed the addition of garlic and herbs, too. It really took the pizza over the edge from ‘simple convenience food’ to ‘delicious treat’. You could be forgiven for thinking that vending machine pizza would taste like the frozen kind you can get from the supermarket. But – astonishingly – these three-minute wonders really do taste like ‘real’ pizzeria pizza. It certainly has a lot to live up to, being located in a city famous for its pizza choices, and I’d be lying if I said it was the best I’d had

The Voice reporter Charley Rogers with her 3-minute pizza

here. It certainly isn’t the best, but for a reasonably priced snack you can get in three minutes at literally any time of day or night, it’s pretty great. Would recommend. Price: £10 (average) Size: Approx 12” Location: 102-106 West Street

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December 2020

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ADVICE FROM A PHARMACIST

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with Ade Williams

Lantern parade will bring us light and joy during these dark and difficult times

T

he Bedminster Pharmacy Team are all really looking forward to the one-off BEMMY LANTERNS LIGHT UP! We have all seen close up darkness and despair this year; it is good to remember and experience how light gives all of us joy. As we reflect, we picked three examples. Firstly, the generosity and selflessness in our community. The BS3 COVID-19 story is not pasta hoarders or loo-roll speculators; even their anxious behaviour is excusable. The remarkable BS3 COVID-19 Response Facebook group has shown how we are mutually dependent and valued. Secondly, people. During the lockdowns, our team has missed seeing the characters and individuals who pass through our lives daily. Yes, we will soon be complaining about the parking, anti-social behaviour, but the thought of all those vulnerable people, part of us, alone and scared for their wellbeing tore our hearts. Thirdly, hope. This has come in many ways, and still in short supply for many. Money

Ade Williams of Bedminster Pharmacy discusses how pharmacies can help people with a variety of health conditions, and ease pressure on the NHS

essential part of our fight against Covid-19. Flu kills an average of 8,000 people every year in the UK. A spike in respiratory illness caused by influenza will bring the NHS to breaking point. Household contacts of persons on the NHS shielded patient list, unpaid carers, immune compromised persons, and their close contacts? Just come in and get your flu jab today. People aged 50-64 years can now get the free NHS flu jabs too, so call us on 0117 9853388 to book your appointment now. We can answer any questions you have. As you take part in the lantern event think of the children, volunteers and groups who have created them. They have brought us joy through their creativity, gifting us new colourful memories. We must all choose to cherish light so darkness does not overwhelm us. Hope is ever precious.

worries, business insolvency and the trauma of this time will leave lasting scars that need healing. Yet, hope comes through actions, many simple. Please be kind enough to share hope. Support and be part of any action; shopping local, giving up time, donating to support social action. The news about Covid vaccines soon becoming available is another example but let us still remember that having your flu vaccination is an

0300 323 0700 info@wecr.org.uk www.wecr.org.uk

Award winning family-run independent pharmacy

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Got a story for South Bristol Voice? Call Rich on 0777 555 0607 or email news@southbristolvoice.co.uk


December 2020

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Advertising feature

Welcome to our school - a great place to learn Strong relationships are the key to success at Luckwell Primary School in south Bristol. We know every child really well and strive to meet each individual's needs. We have a new Head of School, Lilly Byers, who is supported by a dedicated and committed staff team and by our experienced Executive Head Stuart McClelland. The school also benefits

from being part of the Gatehouse Green Learning Trust, working together to provide the best opportunities for children in our community. In less restricted times, we would be conducting regular tours of the school at this time of year to show prospective parents the great environment we offer in which their children can learn and grow.

It is important to us to work in partnership with families from the start and throughout their child's time with us. For now, if you'd like to learn more about our lovely warm, caring and successful school, please take a virtual tour of our reception class and check out the videos on our website, www. luckwell, brisol.sch.uk

Look at Luckwell!

• Talented teaching staff • Caring and engaged community • Refurbished classrooms

• One site with lots of outdoor space to support learning and play • Before and after-school clubs

Luckwell Primary School, Breach Road, Bristol BS3 3ET www.luckwell.bristol.sch.uk

0117 353 3382 Part of Gatehouse Green Learning Trust

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December 2020

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southbristolvoice

THE WICKED WITCH OF KNOWLE

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In witch it's all Hocus Pocus

bviously, witches believe in magic and spells, and we know there’s no such thing as coincidence. So when I hear a tale of supposed happenstance (great word) I wonder what mischief lies behind it. Back in the 80s when Himself was young and lived up North, he had driven his brother, John, to the video shop in their mum’s bright yellow Mini Metro. He double-parked outside, John jumped out and ran into the shop. A space became available by the kerb and Himself pulled into it. As he did so, an identical bright yellow Metro pulled up and double-parked in the same spot Himself had just left. John emerged from the shop, jogged up to the Metro, flung open the door and threw himself in. Banging his palms on the dashboard he shouted 'let's move'

then sat, staring In the evening THE WICKED forward. After a I was flicking WITCH OF few seconds, John through the telly KNOWLE glanced to the side channels when and recoiled. The I recognised St driver was sitting Peter’s Church, the frozen, wide-eyed camera zoomed and speechless. A onto that very brilliant example of same plaque. mischief making. The hairs on I have a new set my neck prickled of doggy familiars as my routine – spooky. has changed. I now stroll around My friend, Mrs Warm, Arnos Park most mornings with recounted a bizarre moment of my crew of yappy dog walkers coincidence. Some years ago and their followers of terrifying she had bumped into one of the terriers, a grumpy Pekinese and a Mums from her son’s school string of sausage dogs with Darcy in Brislington. The Mum cried being the queen of them. “Mrs Warm, I have something for Mr Darcy was telling me you” and produced a photograph. about a plaque at St Peter’s It was a picture of Mrs Warm Church in Castle Park which is and her son sitting on the kerb dedicated to all the people killed watching a street busker in in the Bristol Blitz. Covent Garden, London. On that plaque are the names Turns out that the Mum of Mrs Darcy’s relatives, two had gone to visit a friend who brothers, killed when home from had recently got married. The the war on leave, their house friend had given the Mum a pile took a direct hit. Just tragic. of photos of her wedding but

warned they had got mixed up with other pictures. The Mum had started flicking through them when she came across the picture of Mrs Warm. She stopped and frowned, asking her friend how she knew Mrs Warm and her son. The friend peered over her shoulder and said that she didn’t know them at all, she had taken the photo of the busker. A very weird quirk of fate. I wondered how many strangers’ photos I must be in. Actually, I do know I’m in one picture somewhere out there: two young women were taking a selfie when I was sitting behind them on a plane to Barcelona. As they pouted, preened, and agreed the perfect pose, I pulled myself forward, pushed my face between the seats, wrinkled my nose and crossed my eyes. They took the picture, looked at the screen to admire their beautiful selves and…. Ha! Gottcha.

CLEVE HOUSE SCHOOL & LITTLE CLEVE NURSERY

For boys and girls aged 2-11 years WISHING YOU ALL A VERY HAPPY CHRISTMAS!

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December 2020

News

No lanterns, but there will still be light in BS3

d

s

Welcome to Ashton Sixth Whether you're already at Ashton Park School or studying elsewhere, Ashton Sixth could be the gateway to your future.

There will be no Lantern Parade in BS3 this year - but bad old 2020 hasn’t stopped the Bedminster Winter Lanterns team coming up with a new idea to light up local streets this month. Big and small, illuminated lanterns are being created in schools, community groups and streets throughout the neighbourhood. Thanks to support from the Bedminster Business Improvement District and local traders, they will be lighting up shop windows to deliver some pre-Christmas cheer along North Street, Cannon Street, East Street and British Road for the evenings of Thursday 10th, Friday 11th and Saturday 12th December.

Local people are invited to get their masks on, stay socially distanced and enjoy. At the Bedminster Winter Lanterns AGM on October 22, Ade Williams of Bedminster Pharmacy, pictured inset, and a popular South Bristol Voice columnist,was elected chairperson. He takes over from Malcolm Brammar, who was thanked for his commitment and dedication to this well-loved community event over the past 10 years. Pictured, Juno Swain, of Hengaston Street, with the beginnings of her star lantern

With small class sizes and a personal approach, we support you through every step of your journey. Our virtual open evening is available on our website now. Visit www.AshtonSixth.co.uk to watch our latest video, discover the range of courses we offer and meet our students and staff.

Apply via our website until January 15 for 2021 entry www.AshtonSixth.co.uk 0117 3772742 info@AshtonSixth.co.uk @AshtonSixth Part of Gatehouse Green Learning Trust

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December 2020

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News

Kathleen and Michael celebrate 65 years of love and devotion

A couple from Bamfield Lodge care home in Knowle have recently celebrated 65 years of marriage. Kathleen and Michael Burke, now both aged 89, met when they both lived in Church Hill Brislington. They honeymooned in the Isle of Wight and went on to have three children. They now have eight grandchildren and 10 great grandchildren. Kathleen has always been a keen baker, whilst Michael would spend Saturday afternoon’s watching his beloved Bristol City. General Manager Thomas Roche at Bamfield Lodge said: “The couple have not long moved in with us after being apart for almost four months due to a hospital stay for Kathleen. "We are overjoyed that they have picked Bamfield Lodge to

be their forever home and stay together after all these years. "It’s exactly where they should be. "It’s so wonderful to see two people still very much in love after all these years!” Michael said: “It was horrible being apart from Kathleen for all that time. "When we knew she was going to move in, there was no place I would rather be.” Bamfield Lodge care home is run by Barchester Healthcare, one of the UK’s largest care providers, which is 'committed to delivering personalised care across its care homes and hospitals'. Bamfield Lodge provides residential care, nursing care and dementia care for residents, from respite care to long term stays.

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December 2020

News

Have your say on the future of our region The West of England Combined Authority is asking people living and working in the region for their views to help shape the Spatial Development Strategy, a plan to make sure homes, employment spaces and vital transport links are planned in the right places over the next 20 years. As the region’s population grows and as people live longer, the amount and type of housing that is needed across the West of England is changing. Covid 19 has also altered the way many people are working, travelling and spending their leisure time. The strategy will help make sure residents have the homes they need, where they want to live with the connections to get to job opportunities, education and leisure across the region. It offers an opportunity to plan for a cleaner, greener recovery, ensuring new development is resilient,

contributes towards reducing carbon emissions, and brings improvements for nature and sustainability. Residents and businesses can give their views via a survey on the West of England Combined Authority website. West of England Mayor Tim Bowles said: “This Spatial Development Strategy will make sure that over the next 20 years, we are building homes in the right places so that the West of England remains a great place to live and work. Importantly, it will also make sure we are building sustainable communities that are less reliant on cars, improving our environment and connecting our residents to jobs, education, businesses and leisure facilities right across the region. “Whether you are a resident, business or other organisation based in the West of England, I want to make sure you have your chance to get your voice heard

at this early stage of the process, so that as the work progresses it reflects the priorities of the people who live and work here.” The West of England Combined Authority is working with Bath and North East Somerset, Bristol and South Gloucestershire councils, stakeholders and residents to develop the plan. Nicola Beech, Bristol City Council Cabinet Member for Spatial Planning and City Design, said: “As we plan how to build a more sustainable and inclusive Bristol it’s really important that we hear what people value most. "This plan will shape the West of England for years to come and so we want everyone to share what is important to them, whether that’s improving travel links, protecting green spaces, building homes, or anything else that will help us to create a more equal, sustainable and diverse region that reflects

the priorities of those who live and work here.” Cllr Steve Reade, South Glos Cabinet Member for Regeneration, Environment and Strategic Infrastructure said: “It is really important that we work together across the West of England to plan for a future, in terms of growth, transport and infrastructure, which will help maintain the wider region as a place people want to live and do business. I would like to encourage residents, businesses and others to contribute to this process so that we can move forward together, with shared aims and understandings of what should be protected, maintained and improved, and what we all value as important for our shared future.” The survey closes on December 14. For more information and the survey visit www.westofengland-ca.gov.uk/ future-of-the-region/

e p a h s Help RE

U N T U F THE R REGIO U O F O We’re developing a Spatial Development Strategy to create a greener, more connected and inclusive place to live and work. Have your say to make sure new homes, employment spaces and transport are planned in the right places at www.westofengland-ca.gov.uk/future-of-the-region For a paper copy or information in an alternative format, contact 0117 428 6210 or planning@westofengland-ca.gov.uk.

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December 2020

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Nature focus ... Sophie Clark discusses how we can all help our spiky neighbours By Sophie Clark @ashtons.urban.nature – Instagram account As a lot of you are aware, the hedgehog population in the UK has declined. Whilst the exact figure is uncertain, the worst case estimate is by about 97 % since the 1950s, from 30 million to less than 1 million today…..but hope is not lost – we can all help! Frobisher Road – a Hedgehog Street! When I first moved to Ashton four years ago I had no idea there were hedgehogs here in the city….. but when my neighbour said they used to be a common sighting (and I confessed to being a hedgehog enthusiast and a volunteer at Prickles Hedgehog Rescue), we decided to join our gardens with a hedgehog hole. However, two gardens connected just isn’t enough – those little legs can roam up to two miles a night, to forage for enough food and meet mates for breeding. So after posting leaflets through the rest of the doors on

55

The secrets of BS3's hedgehogs Frobisher Road, with a “Slow Down Hedgehog Area” sign and a “Nature Notice Board” in the background.

connecting streets to streets, we get guaranteed hedgehog sightings every night - either in person as they scurry past us at dusk to the feeding station we have set up or from footage captured on our wildlife camera!

the street we soon had nearly 20 gardens connected! And, being the curious little foragers, they are, soon enough we began to get the occasional spiky nocturnal visitor! Fast forward 4 years, with 100s of leaflets posted on 10 other neighbouring roads (Dampier Rd, Drake Rd, Smyth Rd, Gerald Rd to name a few) and hedgehog highways

How can you start a “Hedgehog Street”? The best advice I can give you is to start by talking to your neighbours and spread the word. Just one hedgehog friendly garden isn’t going to work. They need to visit as many gardens as possible, so work together as a community. Once your gardens are connected, they form part of a wider nature reserve – the perfect city wildlife habitat! You can get great advice from Hedgehogstreet.org and check out the Big Hedgehog Map. It’s great to see how well South Bristol is doing!

Are there any downsides to having Hedgehogs? A question I often get asked is 'will my pet catch fleas off hedgehogs?' Hedgehogs do have fleas, they are host specific, so will not survive on any species other than hedgehogs. But of course, as with all wild animals, avoid touching them. Some dogs can attack hedgehogs – which often leaves the dog worse off. One downside is that as our hedgehog population has increased, so has the number of hedgehog deaths on local roads. But the benefits of having hedgehogs are far greater! It has been lovely to see our hedgehog population grow and the excitement spring brings, with nest building followed by the arrival of hoglets in June! STOP PRESS: The BS3 Hedgehog Task Force is up and running! @BS3.Hedgehog.Task.Force on both Facebook and Instagram

Holy Cross RC Primary School A place for everyone If you are still deciding on the best school for your family, please visit Holy Cross RC Primary School Be part of our small, diverse, nurturing school with lots of outdoor space where the focus is on safe, happy children who are valued and make good progress

Wrap around care from 7.45am - 4.30pm Please contact the school for more information on 0117 377 2199 or email holycrossp@bristol-schools.uk

www.holycross.bristol.school Dean Lane, Bedminster, Bristol, BS3 1DB

Rated ‘Good’ by Ofsted

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December 2020

News

Eclectic influences in former philosophy lecturer's first album The lockdown has prompted a Totterdown man to produce his first CD - at the age of 65. Paul Stevens, a former Philosophy lecturer, took up playing the guitar at the age of 10 but says he has never been professionally recorded before. The rock songs, in an album called Victoria Park, (named for the local park where Nick enjoys walks) include a "mash-up" of The Beatles' I Feel Fine, She's a Woman and DayTripper, were recorded in his bedroom but then sent to a studio near Cambridge where they were professionally produced. He said: "I'd been in bands before but, with the help of a 'looper' device I was able to

record myself playing the guitar over a drums and bass track. "There are some interesting "mash-ups" in there I think, including a Gerry Anderson theme mixed with some Janacek! "I actually recorded the tunes over the course of about a week on my mobile phone before sending them as attachments to a friend over the other side of the country for him to produce them to a professional standard. "I'm very pleased with the ultimate result and I'm already working on a follow-up which will include a Led Zeppelin/ Beethoven mash-up!" To obtain a CD download, email Paul at ps4147@gmail.com

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CHRISTMAS PUZZLES for all For younger readers

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The FIEND


December 2020

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News

Vaccinations to kick-off at Ashton Gate stadium Continued from page 1 tracked as we expect then we are gearing up to be able to start vaccinating staff and any other priorities that are advised to us nationally in December.” A report to the board – issued by Healthier Together, the region’s partnership of health and social care organisations – said Ashton Gate had been identified as a potential site for the mass vaccinations and that it would be open 12 hours every day. It was the only site named in the papers. North Bristol Hospitals NHS Trust, which runs Southmead, will oversee the programme. Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire CCG head of primary care development Jenny Bowker told a council meeting that everyone over 50 and other high-risk groups

would receive it first, although over-80s and care home residents and staff were front of the queue. She said details were being finalised but that the priority groups would be similar to those for flu jabs and that GPs should be ready within weeks, although it was not yet known which vaccines would be available first. “There is a lot of work locally to develop our mass vaccination model,” she told South Gloucestershire Council health scrutiny committee on Wednesday, November 25. “There are different vaccines coming on line. ““There will be priority cohorts of patients and we are expecting those to be similar to the flu groups. “That will come to those at the highest risk in the first instance and those over 50.”

Mark Bradshaw Labour Bedminster As councillors, we are available all year round to deal with issues our constituents raise with us. Whatever the issue, and, although we cannot hold surgeries due to ongoing Covid restrictions, we are here for you and can be contacted in several ways: by email, phone, Facebook etc. Two examples. There is an area of community green space which is being used as an informal car park, undoing the wildflower planting done there by residents. We are working with council enforcement officers and the landowner to rectify this. Community green space is in short supply in Bedminster and we don’t want to lose this space. We have been trying to persuade a major residential provider at another location to sort out bins, dumped items

and a general mess. This has been a long running issue and some progress was made, but now there is pressure from us, officers, and other local people to get this sorted for good. On traffic matters, we continue to lobby for the highway improvements we agreed last year to be installed along Duckmoor and Luckwell Roads, particularly near the school. This includes wider pedestrian refuges as there is no formal crossing on either road and also extensive junction protection. We are also directly supporting residents calling for evaluation work on low traffic neighbourhoods in Bedminster. At the time of writing, Bristol was placed into Tier 3 Covid restrictions. Please follow the government advice: gov.uk/ guidance/local-restriction-tierswhat-you-need-to-know Celia and Mark wish all our constituents a peaceful and healthy Christmas holiday. Let’s hope 2021 is a brighter year for us all.

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Views from your local councillors Chris Davies Lib Dem Knowle First, I would like to thank all those people who have been working so hard on the 'Save Jubilee Pool' campaign. The Mayor has now run out of lame excuses and needs to get the pool reopened before Christmas. Another area that has been of concern is the new secondary school at Daventry Road. Delivering a new secondary school is a long and expensive operation and sometimes they arrive and open later than would be ideal. As an example the new school in Lockleaze was in temporary accommodation for a limited number of pupils before it fully opened. The council planned to do the same at St Phillips, but they were unable to obtain permission as the site was unsuitable. However, the site at Daventry Road has room for early opening

and questions at council provided the proof that there is a significant shortfall of secondary places in south and east Bristol. There will be a peak shortage next year which temporary accommodation could address. In discussions with education officers options have been mapped out. We put down a motion for debate at council calling for an opening in temporary accommodation in 2021 instead of waiting until 2023 when all the buildings will be ready. This has yet to be heard, as Labour have dominated debate time. I also asked a specific question to the mayor which received a neutral unhelpful reply, referring to 2022. We have been working for 20 years to get this new school and I know how much damage it does when our youngsters are scattered to the four winds at the age of 11. Gary and I will keep pushing to get the local secondary education for our children which is so long overdue.

Lucy Whittle Labour Windmill Hill This was my statement to the planning committee explaining why I believed they had grounds for turning down planning permission for the Windmill Pub to be converted into flats. I felt there were three relevant criteria that hadn’t been met. Firstly, planning guidelines state that permission should not be granted if it has been shown that “The loss of the pub would be a loss of community facility:” The local people are telling you the pub’s closure would be a loss of community facility. The fact that over £170,000 was raised in a few weeks, during financially unstable times, rising unemployment, and a worldwide pandemic, shows the strength of local feeling. Secondly, “The owner has proved it cannot be a viable business.” Although it was closed before lockdown, the pandemic

must be taken into account when considering whether the lack of buyers proves lack of viability. Hundreds of new homes are on the brink of being built over the road, and their closest train station is yards away. It has been proved that an alternative business model could be viable, but it is currently impossible to test this. Thirdly, “The applicant has demonstrated that there are numerous other public houses within the local area, many of which serve food and host various events.” There may be another pub at the top of the hill but The Windmill provides an active frontage in a unique position in the locality. And The Windmill’s position at the entrance to our neighbourhood makes the area feel like a community rather than a dormitory. The firelight glow and friendly chatter on a dark night, used to be a warm welcome on the way home. But to quote Joni Mitchel “You don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone.”

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December 2020

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BS3 Community - the south Bristol charity and community development organisation

Social enterprise award delight

BS3 Community has been concerned about the site and named Social Enterprise of the wanted to ensure that it was used 2020 southbristolvoice Year 2020 in an awards scheme for the benefitMarch of the community. for small and medium sized Following that meeting, BS3 organisations. Community was born. The awarding body, SME The vast majority of the News online, recognised the company’s income is generated 'passion for community-driven by their nursery provision. Every Pregnancy Pilates classes a Park change that is still present in penny earned is reinvested into Sylvia strengthen your core and ease the group today, and which now the community. It means that inster and help manifests through their charitypregnancy local aches parents canniggles, financially and onths), prevent longsupport term diastasis recti work'. reliably their community onths) Mondays 6.50pm Keynsham. The group was founded development by choosing one of hs) and in 1991 with the purpose of BS3 Community’s sites as their onths) Postnatal Pilates classes improving the lives of people early education provider. bring baby! living in the BS3 postcode and - feel free Thetocompany runsRestore two thville your core,venues, safely regain ab surrounding area. The company community the thville condition body. is a registered charity and have strength, Southville Centrewhole and the Chessel onths), meaningfully bettered the Centre. As a socialand business, Wednesdays 9.45am 11am, onths) community. It started when a all surplus generated from Keynsham. onths) group of residents approached profitable is booking reinvested Parking services available, onths) Bristol City Council to discuss essential. into education, artistic, www.bwellpilates.co.uk the future of a former school environmental,07984 health582228 and which was now lying empty and wellbeing projects. redundant. The residents were Dawn Lockhart, Head

Milk

61

Pregnancy pilates

Relaxation for parent and baby

of Communications at BS3 Community said: “Bristolians’ March 2020 natural state is to think radically. Why do things the way they have always been done if that method is no longer fit for purpose? We embrace uncertainty. It can be uncomfortable, but it is an opportunity to reassess and shake up the status quo for the benefit of the whole.” Simon Hankins, CEO of the charity said: “This award has come at exactly the right time. My team have pulled out all the stops to continue supporting our community at a very challenging time, they have all made personal sacrifices and I am extremely proud of them. Being awarded Social Enterprise of the Year reflects their dedication and has raised morale in this our 30th of operation as a local charity.” l BS3 Community has been

chosen by Bristol actor Joe Simms to receive £500 as part of his 500 Reasons project. 500 Reasons is a "fundraising concept devoted to making the world a better place, started by an initial group of 500 people each donating £1/week. Each week, anyone from the group can nominate a good cause to be the beneficiary of £500. It might be a local library that's in danger of closing, a lady living near you who's raising money for blankets for the homeless or a family raising funds for their child to have a life or death operation." This time BS3 Community was chosen as the worthy cause and the charity is grateful for the donation. The money will be used to continue its community development work in Ashton, Bedminster and Southville. www.bs3community.org.uk

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07592 003 Tel: 07592 506 003003 Tel: 07592 506 Tel:Tel: 07592 506506 003 1/4 Load 1/4 £89 1/4 Load Load £89 £89 Half Half £139 Half Load Load Load £139£139 3/4 Load 3/4 £179 3/4 Load Load £179£179 Full Load Full £199 Full Load Load £199£199

www.junkmonsters.co.uk www.junkmonsters.co.uk www.junkmonsters.co.uk

D. ATTWELL LANDSCAPING & TREE SERVICES All Garden Works Undertaken All Foliage Removed – Roots Destroyed Patios Laid – Slabbing – Decking Block Paving – Graveling – Wood Chippings Fencing – All Clearance Jobs Undertaken General Building – Garden Walls etc Drives & Patios Jetwashed & Resealed

• FULLY INSURED • LICENSED WASTE CARRIER

For a FREE quote call 07960 681 921 d.attwellgardenservices@hotmail.co.uk

To advertise, contact sales@southbristolvoice.co.uk or Ruth on 07590 527664


December 2020

southbristolvoice

n LOCAL SERVICES

Advertising on this page is very cost-effective. Call Ruth on 07590 527664 ROOFING SERVICES

GARDENING SERVICES

Four Seasons Gardening Services Give your garden some TLC and call us today! No job too small!

Advertise your business here it's effective and COST effective. Call Ruth on 07590 527664

Good Grounds & Gardens

Good Grounds & Gardens Specialists in wildlife ponds

and gardens

Regular maintenance or one-off garden One-off maintenance or bigger re-designs Specialistspruning in wildlife&gardening Seasonal tidying & wildlife ponds Call to discuss your garden’s needs work Private & commercial

07923 447362

07923 447362 info@goodgroundsandgardens.co.uk info@goodgroundsandgardens.co.uk www.goodgroundsandgardens.co.uk

www.goodgroundsandgardens.co.uk OVEN CLEANING SERVICES

SINGLEPLY FLAT ROOFING SPECIALISTS

PLEASE CALL FOR A FREE QUOTE TODAY

07922804129 email: info@bs3roofing.co.uk

Call 07905 364353 for a free quote GARDENING SERVICES

63

Tiling/Slating Lead work Zinc roofs Copper roofs Sheeting & cladding Timber cladding Timber frame work Felt | Liquid |GRP Green roofs PVC guttering & fascia Roof maintenance Velux windows Chimney repairs Render Roof surveys

SPRAY PAINTING FOR CARS

PLUMBING

LOCAL PLUMBER • TAPS • WASHERS

••REPAIRS/BURSTS REPAIRS/BURSTS • STOPTAPS STOPTAPS • DRIPS • LEAKS • REPAIRS •• TANKS, TOILETS TANKS, • TOILETS • BALL VALVES TAPS, WASHERS VALVES ••TAPS, WASHERS • BALL VALVES • LEAD PIPES ETC LEAD-PIPES •• LEAD-PIPES

0117 9564912 0117 **NO VAT** **NO VAT** **O.A.P. DISCOUNTS** DISCOUNTS** **O.A.P.

l Accident repairs, car body repair & spraying in Bristol l 30 years’ experience l Private or trade l Contribution to the excess on all insurance claims (max £200) Tel: 07730 100 388 E: Sprayline01@hotmail.com W: www.sprayline.co.uk Open: Mon-Fri: 10am-6pm

TREE SURGEON

PLUMBING

Taps, Washers Toilets, Cisterns Leaks, Blockages Tanks, Overflows Lead Pipes, Stopcocks….etc… OAP DISCOUNTS and NO VAT

 

0117 PEST CONTROL

Advance Pest Control HAVE YOU GOT RATS OR MICE? WE’LL SORT THEM OUT

ALSO•Pigeons •Moles •Squirrels •Gulls •Bed-bugs •Ants •Fleas •Flies •Moths •Wasps

07771 503107

www.advancepestcontrolbristol.com BEST IN BRISTOL says threebestrated.co.uk

956 4475

RENOVATIONS

WINDOW SERVICES

SnugSash.co.uk Sash window specialist • Renovation • Draughtproofing • Double glazing • Repairs • Painting We can fit double glazing to your sash windows! www.snugsash.co.uk 07736 229727 SnugSash

Got a story for South Bristol Voice? Call Rich on 0777 555 0607 or email news@southbristolvoice.co.uk


INVITATION

CJ Hole Southville invite you to accept our offer of a free sales or lettings valuation. To arrange an appointment, please telephone the office or call in personally. If you have instructed another agent on a sole agency and/or sole selling rights basis, the terms of those instructions must be considered to avoid a possible liability to pay two commissions.

MEDIUM SOUTH WEST

268 North Street, Southville, Bristol BS3 1JA

t: 0117 963 4373 southville@cjhole.co.uk With 17 offices covering Bristol, Gloucester and Somerset

OPENING HOURS Monday - Friday 9am - 7pm Saturday 9am - 5pm

SOUTH WEST

MEDIUM AGENCY ESTATE AGENCY YEAR 2011

The Multi Award Winning Agent

Profile for South Bristol Voice

South Bristol Voice December 2020  

South Bristol Voice December 2020

South Bristol Voice December 2020  

South Bristol Voice December 2020

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