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southbristolvoice June 2017 No. 20

www.southbristolvoice.co.uk

We Sell and Let Property Like Yours

LOCAL NEWS FOR LOCAL PEOPLE

FREE EVERY MONTH in Bedminster, Southville & Ashton

WHATEVER ELSE YOU DO ON JUNE 8, GET OUT AND USE YOUR VOTE

• As banks shut, the cafés move in Page 3 • WIN Fish and chips at the Magnet Page 4

Shed your crocodile fears ...

• We won’t be beaten by flytippers Page 10 • Watchdog ruling after man breaks leg in arrest Page 26

Ahoy: BrisCroc as he was seen on Vicky’s embroidered map of the city

Listen to the candidates: video interviews with all 6 contenders for Bristol South will be online at southbristolvoice.co.uk

General Election special: Pages 16-25

DO YOU wish the fabled Bristol Crocodile was real? Pick up your crochet hooks, then, and join in with BrisCroc – the latest idea from South Bristol arts entrepreneur Vicky Harrison. Launched at the SouthBank Arts Trail on May 14, BrisCroc will be a big beast, 4m long. But, as he will be made of crocheted material on a frame of wire and paper mache, with a seagull perched on his head, he won’t be very threatening. “I think people are taking him to their hearts,” said Vicky, who

runs the Paper Village art shop in North Street. “Within 15 minutes of putting the idea online, I had 30 people sign up to help.” BrisCroc will take about six months to create as volunteers crochet hundreds of panels. He will eventually be on show at locations around the docks, with a gorgeous coat of gold, brown, and copper, all colours recalling Bristol’s industrial past. To find out how you can be a part of making Briscroc, visit • southbristolvoice.co.uk • SouthBank arts roundup: page 30

WE’LL NEVER KEEP YOU IN THE DARK At Ocean you get your own dedicated Move Manager, so you’ll always know exactly what’s going on – the place for a smoother move…

• Who’s won our wildlife competition? Pages 27-29 • The Bemmie belly challenge Page 32

Southville Office Call: 0117 923 1866 Search: oceanhome.co.uk

IN


June 2017

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Paul Breeden Editor & publisher 07811 766072 paul@southbristolvoice.co.uk Ruth Drury Sales executive 07590 527664 sales@southbristolvoice.co.uk Editorial team: Beccy Golding, Alex Morss & The Wicked Witch. Deliveries: Greg Champion

You can find South Bristol Voice on Facebook and Twitter facebook.com/ southbristolvoice Twitter: @sbristolvoice

To To homes, not houses, homes, not houses, we’re here to get you there! houses here not to get you there!

... we’re to get o homes, nothere houses,

Intro

you we’re here to there! get you there! JUST DO IT (vote, that is)

To homes, not houses,

we’re here to get you there!

THEY always say elections are important, don’t they? But this time it’s true, for Bristol South in particular. Many will be assuming that the General Election on June 8 will return another Labour MP for our constituency. Well, not necessarily: the race is too tight to call, with the Conservatives tipped by some to take the seat. Traditionally Bristol South has given a sizeable vote to all the main parties: the Conservatives, UKIP, Greens and Lib Dems all polled many thousands at the last election in 2015 – though Labour’s Karin Smyth was way out in front. This time it’s different. What happens here, in Labour’s safest seat in the South West, will be watched nationwide.

Co. no. 09522608 | VAT no. 211 0801 76

Next month’s deadline for editorial and advertising is June 14th

Does Bristol South want to vote for change, to back the Conservative goal of a more united nation? Do we want to stick with Labour, who will argue that a vote for anyone else will let the Conservatives in? Or do we want to show support for a broad range of parties, as before? Turnout in Bristol South was the lowest in the city in 2015 (62 per cent, when Bristol North West managed 72 per cent). Let’s change that, at least.

CAFE CULTURE THERE’S no doubt BS3 is changing. Look at the number of new restaurants and cafés. Then turn to the Old Brewery plan for shops and homes, as well as Bedminster Green and dozens of smaller projects that will transform the area. We need new homes; but can the planners preserve the character of Bedminster?

How do I get in touch with ...

My MP? There is no MP for Bristol South until after the General Election on June 8.

Cllr.celia.phipps@bristol.gov.uk Mark Bradshaw Labour, Bedminster. By email: Cllr.mark. bradshaw@bristol.gov.uk By phone: 0117 353 3160 My councillor? Stephen Clarke Green, Southville Ask for a free valuation and Byis post: (all councillors) Brunel is 96%. By email: Cllr.stephen.clarke@ Ask forvaluation a free valuation and why satisfaction our customer satisfaction k for a free and see why our see customer 96%. House, St George’s Road, Bristol bristol.gov.uk see why our customer customer for our industry is 73%* Theaverage customer average for our industry is 73%* ee why ourThe customer satisfaction is 96%. BS1 5UY Charlie Bolton Green, Southville satisfaction is 96%. Celia Phipps Labour, Bedminster By phone: 07884 736111 By email: erage for our industry is 73%* Using our extensive local knowledge combined with our regional By phone: By email: Cllr.charlie.bolton@bristol.gov.uk The customer for local our industry is 73%*. Using ouraverage extensive knowledge combined with07469 our413312 regional

database of buyers, we match the person to the home.

database ofour buyers, we match theisperson to the home. knowledge combined with regional Ask Using for a free valuation and seelocal why our customer satisfaction 96%. our extensive knowledge combined USEFUL NUMBERS The customer average for our is 73%* we match todatabase the home. withthe ourperson regional ofindustry buyers, we match Bristol City Council Using our extensive local knowledge combined with our regional the person to the home. database of buyers, we match the person to the home.

www.bristol.gov.uk   0117 922 2000 Waste, roads 0117 922 2100 Pest control and dog wardens 0117 922 2500 TOWN & COUNTRY HOMES Council tax 0117 922 2900 Housing benefit 0117 922 2300 Besley Hill, Bedminster, 165 East St, Avon, Bristol BS3 4EJ Social services  0117 922 2900 TOWN & COUNTRY HOMES TOWN & COUNTRY HOMES *On average 96% of Besley Hill customers who responded to our customer service team between Jan-Dec 2016 Police Inquiries 101 Emergency 999 said HOMES they we’re happy with our services. 73% source: 2016 The Property Academy Survey. WN & COUNTRY Besley Hill, Bedminster, 165 East St, Avon, Bristol BS3 4EJ If you are under contract with another agent* You maybe still liable to pay their fee.

Fire Inquiries

Emergency 999  0117 926 2061

GREATER BEDMINSTER NEIGHBOURHOOD PARTNERSHIP The GBCP brings community groups, councilors and residents together. Council funding for the GBCP has ceased, but activities will continue. • bedminster.org.uk

Besley Hill, Bedminster, 165 East St, Avon, Bristol BS3 EDITOR’S NOTE: South Bristol4EJ Voice is independent. We cannot take responsibility for content or accuracy of adverts, and it is advertisers’ 165 East Avon, Bristol BS3 *On St, average 96% of Besley Hill customers who 4EJ responded to our customer responsibility service teamto between 2016 legislation. conformJan-Dec to all relevant *On average 96% of Besley Hill customers who responded to our customer service team between Jan-Dec 2016 said they we’re happy with our services. 73% source: 2016 The Property Academy Survey. If you are under contract with another agent* You maybe still liable to pay their fee.

said they we’re happy with our services. 73% source: 2016 The Property Academy Survey. Feedback is welcomed: call editor Paul Breeden on 07811 766072 or email *On average 96% of Besley Hill customers who responded to our customer o responded to our customer between Jan-Dec 2016 with If service you areteam under contract with agent* maybe stillpaul@southbristolvoice.co.uk. liable to pay their fee. service team between Jan-Dec 2016 said they we’reanother happy our You services. vices. 73% source: 2016 73% The Property Academy Survey.Academy Survey. All stories and pictures are copyright of South Bristol Voice and may not be source: 2016 The Property nother agent* You maybe stillIfliable to under pay their fee. with another you are contract reproduced without permission in this or any other plane of the multiverse. agent* You maybe still liable to pay their fee. South Bristol Voice Ltd | 18 Lilymead Avenue, Bristol BS4 2BX

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


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n NEWS Old Bookshop and Upfest among award winners SOUTH Bristol has several winners in the 2017 Bristol Life awards. The Old Bookshop in North Street, Bedminster, took the honours for best bar, with judges saying: “A highly appealing hybrid of what a bar/ café/restaurant should be. It’s done a very good job of evolving and expanding with live music and gin bar.” Best event was

Bedminster’s annual street art festival, Upfest, which has grown into a major attraction for overseas visitors every July. “This isn’t just an event, it is so much more and has a lasting impact. You don’t get much more Bristol than Upfest,” said the judges. The arts category was won by BraveBold Drama, the Withywood-based team who

create plays for children as well as working with teenagers. The judges said: “Brave Bold Drama connects with its audience and has a great outreach. A very impressive organisation.” Totterdown eatery The Eating Room took the café/coffee shop category, with the judges saying: “A small team of two that have put their heart and soul into this!”

Café culture steams ahead with more eateries planned Upmarket Hobbs House bakery is one moving in TWO former bank buildings are to be turned into food establishments in a further sign of the changing character of Bedminster. The derelict former bank at 31 East Street, Bedminster, has been granted permission to be turned into a substantial restaurant with tables on two levels, and flats above. Meanwhile the former HSBC bank in North Street, which only closed last year, is to become a branch of upmarket Hobbs House bakery, with a coffee shop as part of the business. A new use for the former NatWest bank on East Street will come as a relief for many. It was closed in 2000 and has been derelict ever since – except for a brief period of national fame in 2010 when police discovered it was being used as a £4m-a-year cannabis factory.KITCHEN Officers raided the bank and found 10 rooms equipped to

3

existing entrance doors with new glazed doors behind

KITCHEN

The old NatWest in East Street with deeper windows to lighten proposed new restaurant EAST STREET ELEVATION

900

(provision for restaurant bins)

store (old safe)

1000

1-2

550

staff

grow four crops of cannabis a year, each one worth about £1m. However, the two men they found tending the 2,000 plants claimed they had not received any of the money. Trung Vu and Hoang Dang had been living in a cupboard under the stairs. Vu, 28 was jailed for four-and-a-half years. and Dang, 30, received two years and nine months. The new plan for the bank involves building a new third storey, behind the decorative parapet wall which tops the second storey. It will allow three 550

900

provision for new bins for 5 x flats

new Barriers Direct wall bike rack system for 7 x cycles, fitted in accordance with manufacturer's recommendations.

RESTAURANT HUNDREDS of BS3 people took to social media as debate erupted whether Bedminster should be shortened to Bemmie or Bedmo. Most longterm residents plumped for Bemmie, and many new glazed inner doors existing doors had never heard of Bedmo. GROUND FLOOR Some users of Bedmo – seen by their critics as hipster trendies FEMALE

(double height)

EAST STREET MEWS

Is it Bedmo or Bemmie? MALE

flats to be built. The restaurant will take up the banking hall, with a mezzanine floor inserted to allow a total of 78 seats. The Voice understands there is no restaurant firm involved in the application and the owner of the building is likely to sell it now that planning permission has been granted. The plan also allows the front windows to be made deeper. Meanwhile in North Street, planners have also allowed Hobbs House bakery to have 26 seats in a small café section. SECTION A-A Hobbs House has branches in Chipping Sodbury, Nailsworth, Tetbury, and Malmesbury. Permission for the café tables was given on the basis the North Street branch will mainly be a bakery and won’t serve cooked breakfasts or lunches. It will serve coffee, items from the bakery, and panini and soup. • Flats plan for Old Brewery: page 9

new windows with extended height

750

OOR

June 2017

– have been attacked online. But the term has been used for years, possibly started by DJ collective Bedmo Disco. The Voice was talking to rugby icon Gareth Chilcott (see page 4), so we asked him for a definitive opinion. EAST STREET “Got be Bemmie,” he said. 33A

Campaign to clear the pavements PARKING on the pavement – is it a necessary evil, or a menace to pedestrians? A project that aims to clear streets in central Bedminster of unnecessary obstructions is getting under way in June. The area between North Street, West Street and Chessel Street will be targeted with leaflets during the month drawing attention to three issues: • Pavement parking • Bins blocking pavements • Overhanging vegetation. The aim is to make Bedminster’s narrow streets an easier place to walk – especially for children, people with buggies and people who are less mobile or who have poor eyesight. Later in the year, the police will start looking for obstructions, starting with serial offenders. They will target people who park on dropped kerbs or anywhere else that makes access difficult for people on foot, especially people who are less mobile. Pavement parking is illegal in London, but not in Bristol or many other cities. Bristol Walking Alliance is pushing for the London law to be extended, though this may take some time. The work is being led by Greater Bedminster Community Partnership with the city council, the police, Bristol Waste, RNIB, Bedminster Access Group and community organisations. If you can help distributing leaflets, please contact • greaterbedminster@gmail.com

new flue to manufacturers spec min 1.0m above ridge height

First

mezzanine

RESTAURANT

East Street

Toilets

RWP

RWP

SP

AVAILABLE APPOINTMENTS ONLY WEEK DAYS

OR THURSDAY EVENINGS FROM APPOINTMENTS WEEKDAYS 7am-4pm THURSDAY EVE 5-8pm SP

5PM T

New Flue

RWP

KINESIOLOGY • MASSAGE • FITNESS

position for collection of new flat bins (and restaurant bins on different days)

mezzanine

www.sarahlangfordfitness.co.uk FIRST FLOOR sarahlangford13@hotmail.com

07920 408013 www.sarahlangfordfitness.co.uk sarahlangford13@hotmail.com

Got a story or any other inquiry? Call Paul on 07811 766072 or email paul@southbristolvoice.co.uk 07920408013


June 2017

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n NEWS

Chilcott returns to childhood chippie ONE OF South Bristol’s most successful sportsmen, Gareth Chilcott, returned to his roots to wish his childhood fish and chip shop success under its new owner. Gareth is an old friend of the owners who have taken over the Magnet, and hopes it will retain the affection the landmark chippie has kept for the past 60 years. “I was born and bred a Bedminster boy, I lived just up the road here on North Street,” Gareth told the Voice. “If you say ‘the Magnet’ to anyone round here they know exactly what you are talking about. Me and my father used to come swimming in the baths over the road, and then we’d come here and eat our fish and chips walking home, straight out of the paper.” Gareth played for Bath in his

long rugby career, notching up 373 appearances as prop for the club between 1977 and 1993. He also played 14 times for England and toured with the British Lions in Australia in 1989. But it wasn’t rugby that toughened him up, he says: it was growing up in Bedminster. “Rugby is a game where you need to be aggressive in the right way, and I got plenty of that round here,” he said. Gareth has always been a keen Bristol City supporter and it was following the team in his youth that got him into trouble, even being banned from matches. “It was rugby that calmed me down,” he said, “along with the peer pressure in the team.” Gareth now owns several businesses, including The Tunnels music venue at Temple

The famous

WIN FISH AND CHIPS AT THE MAGNET!

Gareth Chilcott: Boyhood visitor Meads, as well as a sports travel company, and is a frequent sight in South Bristol, which he still loves, though it’s changed a bit since his childhood. “Bedminster has always been a distinctive community. It is quite a modern community now but it wasn’t always that way, it was very working class, very

MAGNET

To celebrate the relaunch of the famous Magnet fish bar in Dean Lane, we’re giving two prizes of fish and chips for two. That’s two lucky readers who will each win their choice of fish and chips for themselves and a friend. To win, just tell us: • Where did Gareth Chilcott go swimming with his dad? Email your answer, with name, addrerss and phone number, to paul@southbristol voice.co.uk by June 14. family-oriented, but quite a rough place,” he said. He’s delighted with the improvements to the Ashton Gate stadium, and delighted that his beloved City have “dodged a bullet” as he puts it, and stayed in the Championship League. “Hopefully we are going to be on the up and up,” he said.

Fish Bar is back!

UNBEATABLE VALUE COD & CHIPS FROM £4.90 CHIPS FROM £1 CLARK’S PIES £2.30 SPECIAL OFFER FOR PENSIONERS

OPENING HOURS Tues-Wed 4pm-9pm Thurs 12pm-9pm Fri-Sat 12pm-10pm 55 Dean Lane, Southville BS3 1BS Phone: 0117 329 0722

Bath and England rugby star GARETH CHILCOTT has been coming to the Magnet ever since he was a boy. Call in and find out why we’ve been famous for 60 years!

FISH & CHIPS & MUSHY PEAS ONLY £3.50 LUNCHTIMES THURS, FRI, SAT

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


June 2017

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n NEWS

Taking axe to tree budget risks council being sued COUNCILLORS and Bristol’s Tree Forum have slammed a cutback that they say makes no sense and could cost the council much more than it saves. In a little-noticed move as part of plans to save £100m over the next five years, the budget for managing street trees is to be cut by nearly 78 per cent, from £240,000 to £53,000 a year. This means street trees won’t be pollarded to keep their growth under control. Epicormic growth around the base of trees will also be left uncut – potentially blocking pavements. The Tree Forum fears this could lead to street trees being felled if they start to decline. The forum said: “Tree management will be limited to felling to address safety risks. As a result, Bristol’s street tree population will rapidly fall into decline as they are steadily removed, never to be replaced.” Trees allowed to grow unchecked will spread their roots and may cause buildings to shift or subside. It’s believed that this is why

We will watch for safety issues, says City Hall, but no pollarding this year the council pays tree surgeons to pollard mature trees on many South Bristol roads every year. On Knowle roads such as Crowndale Road and Lilymead Avenue, several houses have suffered subsidence in the past. If it happens in future because the trees are neglected, residents could choose to sue the council – wiping out any cost savings. Forum members are also upset that no more trees will be planted – even if they’re paid for. Currently anyone can pay £295 to sponsor a tree in a park or a street, but that’s not enough to cover costs. Developers who are forced by planning rules to plant trees are charged more – £765. Cllr Charlie Bolton, Green councillor for Southville, backed the forum’s complaints and the

New link aims to cut HGVs on Winterstoke Rd A NEW road connecting Ashton Vale industrial estate to the South Bristol Link that will help South Bristol businesses is now open. The new link at Brook Gate gives access from South Liberty Lane to the South Bristol Link. It’s aimed to reduce congestion by removing HGVs from Winterstoke Road. Previously, HGVs could only get to the industrial estate either by the narrow light-controlled railway bridge on South Liberty Lane or the height-restricted under-bridge on Ashton Drive. The South Bristol Link is claimed to bring up to 2,500 jobs and £224m of economic benefit to the south of the city, by cutting business costs, reducing congestion, and giving better access to employment and education for local people.

party is opposing the cut, though it has little chance of reversing it if it continues to be backed by the council’s Labour majority. “These decisions will threaten Bristol’s reputation as a green city,” said the forum. The Voice asked the council how the cuts to the street tree budget were possible without leaving the authority liable to legal action if the trees caused damage to properties. A spokesperson for Bristol City Council said: “Pollarding is not currently programmed for this financial year with the existing budget constraints. However, inspections will continue and any health and safety issues, including presenting danger to property, will be addressed. “As part of our ongoing review we will also be engaging with local communities, organisations such as the Tree Forum and elected members to consider how we can all contribute to the future management or trees and green spaces in Bristol.”

Leading the toys SOUTH Bristol Toy Library is looking for a new chair as founder Annie Berry is moving on. Nearly 150 members are now able to borrow from a stock of 450 toys. • southbristoltoylibrary.co.uk

Growing in park  Vote for us while you’re shopping Jewel of a class JOIN in as volunteers help to improve the Dame Emily Park community garden on Sunday June 11 from 2-4pm. The friends of the park are working with Incredible Edible Bristol to create produce for all to eat.

COMPASS Point primary school is appealing to shoppers to back its bid for cash from Tesco’s Bags of Help scheme. The school, in South Street, needs money to run Play and Stay sessions for children, families

and the local community after school every Friday throughout the summer term in South Street park. Anyone buying items in a Tesco in south or central Bristol can vote for a charity project, including Compass Point.

FREE jewellery-making courses for young people over 16 are being offered by Knowle West Media Centre. They’re on Thursdays in June from 10am1pm. Details from 0117 403 2306 or thefactory@kwmc.org.uk

SPARE ROOM?

Looking for some extra cash for the summer holidays?

Wednesday, June 14, 10.15am-2pm

Fun and relaxation for over-55s living with and beyond cancer Songs, Zumba, wellbeing information, stalls, free lunch & more Location: AXA PPP Healthcare, Nightingale House, Redland Hill, Bristol, BS6 6UT (top of Blackboy Hill)

FREE but you need to book on 0117 353 3042

EARN EXTRA CASH JUST IN TIME FOR THE SUMMER HOLIDAYS

FRIENDLY, FRIENLY,

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LOCAL FAMILIES NEEDED TO WELCOME A SPANISH STUDENT

24th JUNE TO 15th JULY

In return, we offer £390

For more details tel: 07989 712619 or Email: ol.cornish@gmail.com

Registered Charity No.1143816 in England and Wales. Company number: 07403291 Registered Charity No.1143816 in England and Wales. Company number: 07403291

Got a story or any other inquiry? Call Paul on 07811 766072 or email paul@southbristolvoice.co.uk


June 2017

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n NEWS Garden havens grace the city

School warns parents class sizes may rise due to cuts The number of subjects on offer may also have to be reduced

Secret Gardens: creative ideas WANT inspiration for ideas to transform your small BS3 garden? More than 25 people in Bedminster, Southville and Windmill Hill are showing off their Secret Gardens on the weekend of June 10 and 11. A programme costs £2 and gets you in to all the gardens, which are open from 12-5pm. All proceeds go towards local gardening-related projects; last year £1,200 was raised. Programmes are now on sale from various BS3 shops and will be available on June 10 from a stall on North Street (at the Tobacco Factory end) and the Tobacco Factory market on Sunday. Thanks to Whapping Wharf for sponsoring this year’s event. To find out more: • southvillecentre.org.uk/ bloomingbedminster.html

A LETTER from the head and chair of governors of one of South Bristol’s biggest schools has underlined the impact that funding cuts could have on education in the area. Class sizes could increase and the number of subjects be reduced as more savings become necessary, head Nick John and governors’ chair Mark Williams have wanted parents at Ashton Park School. The school, which has more than 1,200 pupils, has an idyllic location on the edge of the Ashton Park estate. It has an £18 million new arts centre and a sixth form, and is rated Good by Ofsted. An analysis of the changes in funding expected by 2019 at schoolcuts.org.uk predicts that Ashton Park School will lose more than £500,000 a year. This is about 10 per cent of its annual budget of £5.5m. If the cut was applied to staff, it would reduce teacher numbers by 13, and is a reduction of £471 per pupil per year. The figures were complied by an alliance of teaching unions.

In their letter, Mr John and Mr Williams point out that because the school is popular and oversubscribed, pupil numbers are rising, which puts further pressure on costs. “The situation will inevitably affect the decisions we make and the education we can offer, particularly in terms of the range and viability of the courses we can afford to run at Key Stage 4 and Sixth Form, as well as the knock-on effect on class sizes. “It is simply no longer possible to run every course we offer each year if the take-up is low. “This is not a lack of ambition or aspiration on our part, but rather the stark economic reality of the current funding challenges facing the school,” says the letter. Mr John and Mr Williams

THOUSANDS JOIN PROTEST OVER SCHOOLS FUNDING OVERALL, schools in Bristol could lose around 1,000 teachers, parents and teachers heard on May 18 at a meeting at Parson Street primary school to discuss education cuts. A protest march in the city centre the folowing Saturday attracted about 5,000 people. Conservative plans aim to even

reassure parents that the school is committed to providing a high quality education including “a broad, balanced and challenging curriculum”. “We are a fully inclusive comprehensive school and proud to be so,” they say. “We are increasingly having to make difficult decisions, but you can be assured that these decisions will be made in the best interest of all of our young people.” • Ashton Park School is in talks about forming a multi-academy trust with Redland Green secondary school and two South Bristol primaries, Luckwell and Compass Point. The Government is keen for more schools to join alliances in large academies, which could help reduce running costs. out school funding across the country. Bristol is set to be one of the biggest losers, with school budgets cut by £33 million by 2020. The website schoolcuts.org.uk, funded by the teaching unions, predicted that the equivalent of 283 teachers in South Bristol could lose their jobs if the savings are used to cut staff costs. The Conservatives say no school will face a budget cut, but opponents say funds per pupil will decrease.

ASK A VET: How should I look after my rabbit’s teeth?

A

RABBIT’S teeth are open rooted, meaning they are constantly growing. If not worn down or treated regularly, this can cause some serious problems for your rabbit. Diets high in fibre – that is, high in grass and hay, high-fibre forage and a pellet-based food – are best. Diets that have inadequate hay, or too much fruit, veg or muesli mixes will allow the overgrowth and eventual malocclusion (when the teeth do not meet properly). Overgrown teeth can lead to spur formation (spikes on the teeth). These spurs dig in to the soft tissues of the mouth causing pain.

Maloccluded teeth apply abnormal pressures on each other which often leads to inflamed and sometimes elongated roots. These can be painful and can eventually lead to the formation of dental abscesses. There are a number of telltale signs to look out for that might mean your rabbit has dental disease. These can include subtle symptoms such a change in eating habits, grinding of the teeth (bruxism) or bad breath. More obvious signs can include dribbling under the chin and inside the front legs, runny eyes, runny nose, faecal clagging around back end, lumps

on the face due to dental abscesses and overgrown front teeth. Once teeth are maloccluded and have spurs, a rabbit is unlikely to have normal teeth again. However, they can have a good quality of life if they receive regular dental treatment and pain relief. Dental treatment should be performed under general anaesthesia by an experienced, rabbit-savvy vet. Dental disease in rabbits should never be ignored and regular check-ups are recommended to catch problems early. If you notice these changes or see the above signs you should contact your rabbit-savvy vet as

Sonya Miles BVSc MRCVS Ashton Veterinary Surgery, Ashton soon as possible. Book your rabbit in for a free health check during Rabbit Awareness Week from June 17-25. Call Ashton Veterinary Surgery on 0117 953 0707.

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


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n NEWS

Chance to have your say on Bristol’s grotty quality of air RESEARCHERS want to hear from people in South Bristol about how air pollution is affecting their lives. A series of events in the south of the city will be held by ClairCity, a Europe-wide project that’s working with the University of the West of England to find out what people want to do to achieve a cleaner city. A series of presentations in Hartcliffe and in the city centre will end with a presentation to community group Tresa in Totterdown on June 21. It’s reckoned that 300 early deaths are caused by poor air quality in Bristol each year. Roads in the city centre – such as Rupert Street – are the worst affected, but local hotspots include the Three Lamps junction, Parson Street, and Bedminster Parade. In Bedminster Parade, some of the new flats being built in the former tobacco offices near Asda will have their windows fixed shut on the street side because

AIR POLLUTION EVENTS WITH CLAIRCITY June 10-11 Festival of Nature, Millennium Square (UWE tent) 10am-5pm June 15 Hartcliffe Gatehouse Centre 10am-12noon June 21 Tresa, location tbc, Totterdown 7.30pm

the pollution from vehicles there is so bad. A similar planning condition was going to be imposed on a planned block of flats on the Parson Street gyratory, but that plan was refused for other reasons. Dr Corra Boushel, who is working on the ClairCity project at UWE, said: “Shockingly, air pollution in Bristol is linked to the deaths of around 300 people every year due to heart attacks, strokes and cancer. The main cause of air pollution in Bristol is the traffic, and people inside cars can be exposed to as much – and sometimes more – air pollution than pedestrians or cyclists.”

New West mayor is Tory CONSERVATIVE Tim Bowles was elected the first metro mayor for the West of England in the election held on May 4. Labour’s Lesley Mansell was the runner-up – though she was a clear winner in Bristol (see below). The Lib Dem contender Stephen Williams was third. Mr Bowles heads Weca, a new authority, working with the leaders of South Gloucestershire, Bristol and Bath & North East Somerset councils to plan housing, transport and training. All the authority members are

Conservative, apart from Bristol’s Labour mayor, Marvin Rees. Weca has a £30 million-a year investment fund. It will manage a Key Route Network of local roads, and has wide powers over bus and rail services. It will also draw up a plan for housing across the region. North Somerset council did not want to join the new authority. It is seen as a vital part of many discussions, though, such as improving transport to Bristol airport, and possible new homes in the Green Belt.

THE VOTING Across the region

Bristol First preference votes Lesley Mansell Labour 29,676 Stephen Williams Lib Dem 20,675 Tim Bowles Conservative 18,146 John Savage Independent  14,467 Darren Hall Green   13,857 Aaron Foot UKIP   3,354 Turnout Across the region 29.7% Bristol  31.1%

First preference votes Tim Bowles Conservative Lesley Mansell Labour Stephen Williams Lib Dem John Savage Independent Darren Hall Green Aaron Foot UKIP Second preference votes Tim Bowles Con Lesley Mansell Labour

53,796 43,627 39,794 29,500 22,054 8,182 70,300 65,923

The events will enable people to ask questions about the issue, as well as give their own views. A link to a survey is given below. Alternatives such as electric vehicles and other less polluting forms of transport will be on the agenda. “The project aims to draw up a policy package for politicians to identify the best options to really tackle this issue in a way that works for local people, and can make a difference,” Dr Boushel said. ClairCity is working with Bristol city council and Weca, the new West of England authority. Bristol is the pioneer leading the project – ClairCity also plans to work in five other European cities, including Amsterdam and Genova. • Survey: bit.ly/bristolsurvey • claircity.eu

Something for all at the library THERE’S lots going on at Bedminster library during June. On Thursday June 1 there will be a Chat Back show from 2-4pm, the results of work by Wyldwood Arts in Bedminster. The group works with older people, young people from disadvantaged backgrounds, those with disabilities and special educational needs. On Monday June 5 there’s a new Board Game Club for adults, meeting once a month from 4.30-6.30pm. Email Tom to book in: tjdurrant@hotmail.co.uk Saturday June 10 sees a Bordeaux Arts Workshop from 11am-1pm for children to explore the art and culture of Bristol’s twinned city, Bordeaux. And starting on Saturday June 24 there’s a Comic Book Club from 2-3pm – a monthly chance for 8-12 year-olds to draw, doodle and have fun. • Email: bedminster.library@ bristol.gov.uk

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June 2017

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n NEWS Cycleway plans to be unveiled to public NEW plans for a cycleway through Victoria Park will be explained at a public meeting at St Michael’s church, Windmill Hill, at 7.15pm on June 19. Members of Forward Together, the pressure group set up in the wake of a controversial plan for a “cycle superhighway”, are hoping their concerns have been taken on board by the city council’s Cycling Ambition Fund team. The council’s application for a 4.7m wide cycle lane in the park was withdrawn in January after hundreds of objections from local people, and many letters of support from cyclists. The new plan is expected to include most of the requests made by Forward Together. The path will be shared, and will be just 3m wide. It will follow mainly existing paths from the corner of Hill Avenue and Nutgrove Avenue, to go through the centre of the park and past the adventure play area, with some new sections to avoid trees. It will not be lit except for the section alongside the railway, between St Luke’s Road and Windmill Close. Barriers will be kept at the entrances, but altered to make access easier for cyclists and disabled people. Consultation on the plan starts on June 12. A planning application is expected in July. All work on the £2.3 million Filwood Quietway, of which the park route is a part, has to be finished by March 2018 or government funding will be lost.

City Farm votes for nursery, not footie WINDMILL Hill City Farm looks likely to pursue a plan to build a new nursery on part of its land – providing 32 childcare places and securing the financial future of the community farm. If it happens, the 13 teams who use the farm’s five-a-side pitch will have to find somewhere else to play. The farm’s trustees delayed a decision last month to consider the arguments put forward by the teams, and consult the farm’s membership. Members voted 15-2 in favour of the nursery plan, with two abstentions. Farm chief executive Steve Sayer told the Voice there would now be a feasibility study. A planning application is likely to be submitted to the council in the next few weeks. In order to get government funding, the nursery needs to open in the autumn. The project offers the farm the prospect of a steady income of £300,000 a year, which could secure its future. The pitch earns about £7,000 a year. “Changing the use from a pitch to a nursery will be a difficult decision for the trustees,” said Mr Sayer. “However, at 13 years old, the pitch is beyond its expected lifespan. If the project goes ahead the farm will work with the teams and the council towards finding alternative provision. “There are more than 400 families on the waiting list for the existing popular nursery at the

Now five-a-side players say they’ll object if planning application follows farm. In a world where grants are getting harder to win, the farm needs to generate more of its own income to ensure it is still here for future generations to enjoy.” Many of the football players, however, are not happy. Nikki Tillett, who has been playing on the pitch as part of a women’s team, Windmill Hill Dynamos, for more than 25 years, believes the farm isn’t looking hard enough at other places to put the nursery. “I feel the farm have been put in a very difficult position,” she said. “There is no time for them to make sensible choices.” Other places considered for the pitch are the new garden space at the farm entrance; one of the paddocks; and an outside play area. Mr Sayer told the Voice none of them were suitable. Nikki said the farm has only paid “lip service” to the alternatives. She warned that if a planning application is made, it will be opposed not only by the players but by Sport England and the Football Foundation. So far neither the farm nor the council has been able to suggest another pitch which the teams could use in the vicinity.

Are you game for a bike ride? HENGROVE’S Family Cycling Centre is asking Are you Game? As part of Bristol’s year as a European City of Sport, it’s offering free sessions on Wednesdays (1-2.30pm) or Fridays (1-3pm). The centre will provide bikes and helmets and lots of encouragement to help people regain their cycling confidence or build up their fitness on a bike. The centre in Bamfield is also hosting a free community fun day to help South Bristol Community Hospital celebrate its five-year anniversary. On Saturday June 10, from 10am to 4pm, there will be cycling taster sessions using the centre’s two-wheelers, all-abilities bikes and bike trailers and tag-alongs; Nordic walking sessions; bike rides organised by Life Cycle;  sales of refurbished bikes, swaps of children’s bikes and more. • betterbybike.info/ familycyclingcentre

Bug hunters SUNDAY July 9 sees a search for creepy crawlies picnic in South Street park, as well as a bug hunt as part of My Wild Bedminster. Any bugs experts that can help the Friends of the park with identifying their finds can email sarahhorsell1104@gmail.com. They can also try the South Bristol Voice’s special iSpot page, where experts will identify any wildlife finds made in BS3: • www.ispotnature.org/projects/ my-wild-bedminster-alexmorss • My Wild Bedminster: pages 27-29

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June 2017

n NEWS Objections roll in to Rollo plan for Malago energy centre

southbristolvoice SO FAR 67 objections have been made to the plan for an energy centre by Rollo Hoomes next to its proposed 10-storey block of 217 flats on Malago Road. Neighbours voiced worries about possible noise and pollution, and several asked that the plan be considered together

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with the flats, as they will bring more traffic and further harm air quality. WHaM, the Windmill Hill planning group, said the plans were not clear enough: they do not show the gas-powered plant’s 32m-high chimney in relation to the proposed flats. The chimney

is lower than the flats, and lower than parts of Windmill Hill, meaning that both could be affected by exhaust from the plant, said WHaM. The group questioned the viability of the plant: rival developer Urbis is also drawing up plans for an energy centre.

Courtyard shops and 113 flats in plan for Old Brewery, but what about jobs? Toll House

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Right, development site shaded in grey council on whether the scheme will need an Environmental Impact Assessment. It’s not clear why the site would need an environmental study – perhaps because of its historic use in industry stretching back over 200 years, which may have caused pollution. The Ashton Gate Brewery was founded there in the 1820s, at first called Bayntons after its founder, Thomas Baynton. The new plan does not appear to be connected with George Ferguson, the former mayor of Bristol and owner of the Tobacco Factory and the Bristol Beer Factory, which is next to the

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Major scheme to open up the end of North Street

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NORTH Street could be set for a radical transformation if plans being drawn up for the Old Brewery come to fruition. A large site behind the Bristol Beer Factory, including the premises of auctioneers BCVA, is proposed for redevelopment with 113 flats and two courtyards – one of them surrounded by shops. The plan could extend the appeal of North Street and bring more shoppers to the area. The shops would be in a courtyard opening opposite the Toll House. It is designed to create a gateway into the busy shops and cafés of North Street. It’s unclear how many businesses would be affected or whether jobs would be lost. The buildings would be up to six storeys in height. They would reduce to three storeys fronting North Street, on the corner opposite the historic Grade II-listed Toll House, which dates from about 1820. No details have been published of the plans. All that has been made public is a request to the

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development site. Neil Sellers of BS3 Planning Group appealed for the developer to start a dialogue with local people before plans are submitted. The group has been shown a pre-application plan which shows 47 underground parking spaces for the 113 homes, accessed off Baynton Road. Some residents living nearby are likely to fear this will mean more vehicles on the already-crowded streets. Mr Sellers said other areas of concern likely to be raised include the absence of larger flats suitable for families, and the impact on employers. Residents would have a private courtyard

off Baynton Road. Charlie Bolton, Southville Green councillor, said the plan adds to worries that so many people moving in to the area will need extra services such as doctors and schools. “My other concern is that there’s employment there, what’s going to happen to that?” he said. “We need to see the detail.” The current site is described by the developer’s agent, GVA, as “low quality warehouses” of two storeys, with about 2,090 sq m of employment floorspace. The new plan includes 1,050 sq m of commercial space, which may include industrial space for small firms.

THE DEVELOPER THE DEVELOPER behind the plan is called The Old Brewery MCC LLC, a partnership between Change Real Estate and Cannon Family Office. Both are behind the £180m redevelopment of Redcliffe Quarter which includes a 185-room Radisson Red hotel, and the £13m Redcliffe Parade.

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June 2017

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n NEWS Students keep Playing Out their perfect spreads word record in the across the UK THE PLAYING Out group – tough Ten Tor which has helped hundreds of streets across Bristol ban vehicles challenge in favour of children for a few hours, is on the move. The group is moving from its shop at 148 North Street to a new shared workplace in Bankspace, the old Lloyds Bank building on East Street (opposite Wilko). Playing Out began in 2009 when two BS3 neighbours applied to close their street to cars for a couple of hours after school one day so that children could play freely and safely outside their own front doors. The idea quickly spread across Bristol and beyond. Playing Out is now a Community Interest Company aimed at restoring children’s right to play outside. To date, 150 streets and estates across Bristol have ‘played out’ (many on a regular basis) and the idea has spread to over 40 other towns and cities across the UK. A spokesperson said: “In our East Street space, our small team will be focusing on getting more streets and children playing out across the UK. However Bristol is still our home patch! “As well as supporting residents here, we try out new ideas. Recently we’ve been working with residents in high-rise estates and supporting children in Hartcliffe to make a film about the impact of speeding traffic on their lives. “We’re also working with others to make Bristol a Child Friendly City, where children are free to move around independently and enjoy the city, and where they are valued as citizens in their own right. ” For help in setting up a Playing Out season, email hello@ playingout.net, phone 0117 953 7176 or call in at Bankspace. • playingout.net

A DOZEN students from Bedminster Down School have all completed the tough Dartmoor Ten Tors challenge – an overnight trek covering a minimum of 35 miles across tough terrain. “We must be doing something right, with three consecutive years of 100 per cent completions,” said Matt Eagon, deputy Ten Tors team manager at the school. “This event has a very high drop out rate.  The majority of schools who take part are from the private sector and we’ve held our own despite having far less financial backing and resources.” Students from years 9, 10 and 11 underwent months of selection and physical training, organised by Steve Friday, the school’s leader for outdoor education. They have to train for an overnight walk – always held on the second weekend in May, when temperatures can be

Very moor-ish: Members of the 35-mile team from Bedminster Down freezing, or hot and sunny, with the added risk of torrential rain. Mr Eagon said: “Both our teams did very well.They came in with very safe times, with hours to spare, as they managed to stick to the plans we had in place perfectly. “The benefits of taking part are life-long for our students and I believe we’ve got good enough that success is now entrenched at the school at getting through Ten Tors.” Student Alex Trowbridge, in his final year at Bedminster Down, tried twice to make the team before succeeding this year. After completing the 45-mile route, he said: “The mood at the end was a strange

blend of happiness and exhaustion. “I think we did our school and ourselves proud and although it’s the toughest thing I’ve ever done, I wouldn’t change a thing.”  The 35-mile team finished at 12.41pm on the Sunday, more than 29 hours after they set off at 7am the day before, while the 45-mile team finished at 2.31pm.  The Ten Tors Challenge is organised by the Army, aided by helicopters and manpower from the Royal Navy, Royal Air Force and the Dartmoor Rescue Group.  Each year 2,400 teenagers take part. Over the last 20 years the temperature has ranged from -2 C to 20.7 C and rainfall has reached 18.6mm in a day.

Flytippers won’t halt clean-up VOLUNTEERS are appealing for help to carry on the clean-up at Malago Greenway – undaunted by the fact that fly-tippers are continuing to dump mattresses and other rubbish. An event on Saturday June 10 will mark a year since the residents started to transform Brixham Road and Marksbury Road open spaces. The volunteers will tackle the last bits of heavy rubbish from the river bank and move into Marksbury Road open space. Just a few days after the last

clean up in March, a fridgefreezer was abandoned in the river. A few days later, a couple of mattresses and bags were thrown onto the recently-cleaned banks. Sara Worth, one of the volunteers, said: “It is maddening. Most [people] really appreciate what the volunteers do, though.” The volunteers will also go from door to door to speak to people living around the parks, trying to understand where the problems stem from and what solutions can be suggested, in

conjunction with Bristol Waste. The energetic Greenway team have already raised the £3,500 needed to plant a Berry Maze of soft fruit, starting in the autumn. Backers of that project include developer Redrow, which is building homes on Bedminster Road, and Good Gym, a group of keep-fit fanatics who jog from one community project to another. Businesses giving free food for the volunteers include East Street Fruit & Veg and Greggs. Get more details by emailing malagocommunity@gmail.com

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June 2017

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n NEWS

Anger over self-store plan It’ll block our light, it’s too big, and it’s not needed, say terrace residents PLANS to build a large self-storage unit on the site of the old Mercedes garage in Winterstoke Road have met a tide of protest. More than 100 objections have been made – many of them at the loss of housing that was previously part of the brief. Many are also upset that the building is much larger than on previous plans. Residents of Bower Ashton Terrace, a row of houses which sits behind the former garage, are furious and believe their gardens will be robbed of light. “Not only does the facility build right up to the boundary (5m closer than previous plans), it completely overshadows the

Blanked out: Residents say this is how high the new store will be, right in front of their windows houses. The view of the back of the warehouse is what the residents will be able to see and the loss of light to the front gardens will be massive,” wrote one of the terrace’s residents. The developer has promised to rebuild the historic art deco features of the old garage –

which was a rare survivor of pre-war motoring architecture. A previous plan – agreed after years of argument – had 14 homes facing Bower Ashton Terrace. Now these have been dropped in favour of a larger, 9,085 sq m warehouse for Access Self Storage. Two residents of the nearby terrace believe their homes have already suffered cracking during drilling by the contractors. Several dispute the developer’s study of how much daylight they would lose, and want the council to do its own checks. One called it “an extremely ugly excessive eyesore”, and many agreed it would be out of keeping with the surrounding Victorian architecture. Others objected to the 24-hour access to the storage units. They also protested the store is not needed: there are two others within less than a mile.

Appeal for firms to back the Lanterns THE BEDMINSTER Lanterns team has launched its appeal for sponsors. The South Bristol Voice is putting its name forward as a sponsor for the first time but dozens of local businesses have been backing the event for years. Three levels of sponsorship are available: Supporters, who donate up to £100; Sponsors, paying upwards of £200; and a special category known as Leading Lights. Each supporter will be featured in the parade’s publicity and social media, which is seen by thousands of people from the BS3 area through the year. And Leading Lights will have a special position in this year’s Parade in early December. You can get in touch with the #bemmylanterns team by email: • info@bwlp.org.uk

Got a story or any other inquiry? Call Paul on 07811 766072 or email paul@southbristolvoice.co.uk


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June 2017

n NEWS

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June 2017

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n FEATURES

Freelance mums aim to boost their businesses while the kids get crafty

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AYE Dicker is a South Bristol girl through and through, proud to have grown up in Whitchurch. “I was born in Keynsham hospital on Boxing Day, 1975. My family didn’t have a car so my dad came to visit the hospital on his tandem! That tandem was a big part of my life - we used to cycle up to Dundry and all round Whitchurch on it.” And now Faye has a cargo bike (where the kids sit in an upfronttrailer), replicating those happy memories with her two children, Jemima, 5, and Suki, 3. “On Saturday mornings we’d be up the allotment in Whitchurch, playing in the wheelbarrow – it was an idyllic childhood. I went to Bridge Farm primary school – the same school my daughter goes to now.” Faye was “always into drama. I went to the HTV Drama Workshop,” in the building which is now Bath Road Studios, “and at 18 I went to Dartington College of Arts to do a degree in theatre.” She returned to Bristol in her mid-20s, working at BBC Radio Bristol, later adding freelance voiceover work too. “I was living in the Dings when I met my husband. We were trying to decide where to live and a house came up in Whitchurch village. When we went to see it I thought ‘I played in this house as a child! I know this house!’ It turned out it was

NEXT EVENTS AT FREELANCE MUM St Paul’s Church Tuesday June 13, 10am-12noon This Mum Runs founder, Mel Bounds, shares her incredible story of how she set up a community of running mums all over the country, encouraging them to get happier and healthier, while juggling her family in South Bristol.

Faye’s big idea was to bring work and childcare together, finds Beccy Golding the house which used to be occupied by the curate of St Augustine’s church when Faye was a child, and she’d been to play there frequently. They bought it – and later got married in the new church (rebuilt after the old one became dangerous). Faye has always worked in broadcasting. “I was balancing working on the early morning breakfast show with voiceover work.” But when she had her first child she realised “the 4am starts are not going to fit any more!” Continuing as a voiceover artist she felt “something was missing – the connections, the outlet that a workplace offers. I thought ‘I can’t be the only freelance mum’.” So she set up a blog, with podcasts offering advice on freelancing for parents. “And, born off this, networking events – and these have really flown!” Faye’s first Freelance Mum event was in 2013. Now she runs monthly sessions at two venues in South Bristol – St Paul’s Church on Coronation Road, on the second Tuesday of the month, and, new this year, Windmill Hill City Farm on the Windmill Hill City Farm Friday June 23, 10am-12noon Getting energy from what you eat and how to ditch the baby brain (even though they’re now toddlers!) Nutritionist Claire Stone suggests realistic ways you can give yourself more energy, to make up for the fact you’re running after other people and never have time for yourself! “A nutritionist, not food dictator, with a love of chocolate.”

Work and play: Faye and friends talk shop and juggle their offspring fourth Friday of the month (and there’s a possible third venue on the cards). That’s every month except August (holidays) and March, when Faye runs an event, Brave, Bold & Bonkers, to mark International Women’s Day. Each monthly event sees 20-40 mums (or dads – welcome too), plus their children, attend; sessions begin with a walk – a ‘netwalk’ – followed by a speaker, rounded off with tea or coffee and a brownie for everyone, and networking, of course. Previous speakers include Andy Day and Katy Ashworth, both from CBeebies, Rob Lowe (MD of children’s suitcase maker Trunki) and Tristan Hogg, co-founder of Pie Minister. Freelance Mum sessions are an affordable £7.50 plus booking fee, including your drink and brownie. Starting with a walk “is key – fresh air brings fresh thinking.

Mums can talk while the kids are scooting, or walking with them.” Afterwards mums can concentrate on the speaker while for the kids there’s always a craft activity available (though it’s not childcare – everyone is still responsible for their own offspring). It all happens in the same room. “It’s a slightly bonkers space, juggling business around babies, but it just works,” says Faye, “It’s effortless and child-friendly. No-one minds if you’re breastfeeding or have to change a nappy. And people do business. “I’ve made friends with people who live round the corner, who I didn’t know until I met them at an event. My own kids sometimes join me – they love it and they always want to come. There’s a whole network of kids who’ve met at Freelance Mum!” Now that’s next level networking. • freelancemum.co.uk

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June 2017

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n NEWS

Everyone’s a dancer inside A STORY of triumph over adversity made a resounding success for the annual show by Dance Voice – a group based in Wedmore Vale. Titled Dare to be Different: Asha’s Story, it was performed by people who attend groups at the charity, using dance and movement to create a colourful, professional-level show in the theatre at City Academy Bristol in Redfield. “It is so moving to see people expressing their potential and to see how they have blossomed since the last show. I love the fact that each group does a piece on

stage and everyone is included. It was very colourful and I was singing along!” said one audience member. Dance Voice has spaces for adults with learning difference s to join sessions at the Quaker Meeting House in Wedmore Vale on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 10am-12noon. The group also works with people with mental health issues and recovering from addictions. “We use movement, dance, colourful props and wonderful music with our sensitive therapists to help people grow and change,” said a spokesperson.

To find out more, search Facebook for dancevoice, email admin@dancevoice.org.uk, call 0117 953 2055, or visit the website.

All stars: Members of the Dance Voice group at last year’s show • Dancevoice.org.uk

Ashton Gate station still on the cards HOPES of a railway station for Ashton Gate are not dead, says Bedminster councillor and former Bristol transport chief Mark Bradshaw. The re-opening of platforms at Ashton Gate seemed further off than ever this spring when it emerged that Network Rail had hugely underestimated the cost of the Portishead line. Amazingly, a £58m estimate of the Portishead project had been produced from paperwork alone. When engineers inspected the existing freight track to Portbury, and realised the difficulty of working in the Avon Gorge, the bill ballooned to £160m or more. That appeared to push an Ashton Gate station – already at least five years off – even further down the track. Ashton Gate

Bradshaw says a simple station design is feasible would be en route to Portishead, along with Parson Street. Cllr Bradshaw was cabinet member for transport until he was relieved of his job by mayor Marvin Rees in late March. He told the Voice he was sorry to lose the job, because he wanted another year to see through the opening of the Metrobus routes and a series of improvements to local trains, known as Metrowest. Before he left, he set up a “solutions group” to look at the Portishead problem. If the line can be built to a lower standard that allows trains to go at 30mph,

meaning an hourly service to Portishead, there could still be more frequent trains to Ashton Gate, he said. Improvements at Parson Street would mean some trains could turn around without going to Portishead. And a simple station, with a long platform, ticket machines and bus shelter-type buildings, would mean that Ashton Gate could have the capacity to be used on match days but still cost £3-4m rather than the £10m for a more elaborate station. Plans

being drawn up for council housing on the Alderman Moore’s site at Ashton Vale include space for a new station. Cllr Bradshaw pointed to Cranbrook station, near Exeter, opened in 2015, as an example of the kind of station that could be built at Ashton Gate. Cranbrook has a single platform 150m long which can take six-carriage trains. It cost £5m, but it has a 150-space car park – which will not be needed at Ashton Gate. • Your councillor: page 37

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June 2017

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n GENERAL ELECTION A great debate, but with only 4 of the 6 candidates Karin Smyth accuses Tory of ‘running scared’; he says he got too little notice

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ABOUR’s candidate for Bristol South accused her Conservative rival of running scared when he did not take part in the only scheduled debate between the constituency’s candidates before the General Election. The hustings, on May 18, held by Bristol Women’s Voice (BWV) at The Park Centre in Daventry Road, Knowle, featured only four of the six candidates – Labour’s Karin Smyth, Tony Dyer for the Greens, Ben Nutland of the Liberal Democrats and UKIP’s Ian Kealey. Conservative Mark Weston did not appear, citing a prior

engagement. And John Langley, an independent, was excluded from the meeting, apparently over concern about his former career as a porn star. Ms Smyth, Labour’s MP for Bristol South from 2015 until the election was called, told the meeting she was very disappointed she couldn’t debate with Mark Weston, the Conservative candidate who is her main rival. “It’s hugely disrespectful to the people of Bristol South that the Tory candidate has not turned up. It would have made for a wider debate,” she said.

Tony Dyer, Green party: Praise for Bristol’s work against FGM

Ian Kealey, UKIP: ‘Why are all the best schools full of posh kids?’

She tweeted: “Shame the Tory was too scared, or perhaps embarrassed by his Gov’t, to show up and debate.” BWV told the Voice they had informed Bristol Conservatives of the date several weeks previously, before Mr Weston was chosen as the candidate. Mr Weston told the Voice he learned of the hustings only four days before, when he had already committed to attend an event in Bishopsworth the same evening. The hustings was the only one organised in the constituency and it’s unlikely there will be another opportunity for the

public to meet the candidates together before the election on June 8. The four candidates present were questioned on issues including foreign aid, support for working mothers, the pay gap between men and women, help for refugees, and air pollution. The meeting was open to men, though few were present, and the questions were focused on women – though as the organisers pointed out, most political issues affect both sexes. Unsurprisingly, all the candidates declared themselves against air pollution, which Mr

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June 2017

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n GENERAL ELECTION

John Langley, Ind: Excluded, he made a silent protest outside

Ben Nutland, Lib Dem: ‘Teachers shouldn’t have to buy pupils pens’

Karin Smyth, Labour: Tory’s noshow was ‘hugely disrespectful’

Mark Weston, Conservative: ‘It was simply a case of short notice’

Dyer said kills 400 people a year in Bristol. The Greens had got all parties in Bristol to start a study into a Clean Air Zone, he said. All wanted action to clean up Bristol’s air. Ms Smyth accused the Government of offloading responsibility for the problem on an already overburdened council. Mr Nutland gave a passionate plea for a Clean Air Zone for the city: “We should address this, and address it now,” he said, to a flash of green cards from the audience – the evening’s way of showing approval. Mr Kealey said he had long been against “disgusting, filthy, diesels,” but admitted it was unlikely to be a top issue in his party’s manifesto. Mr Weston told the Voice he wants air pollution tackled by scrapping older diesels and the dirtiest buses and taxis, but not by penalising private motorists – like himself – who bought diesel cars thinking they were more sustainable. Mr Kealey faced heckling and red cards from the beginning, accused by one woman of issuing bigoted tweets. (After the Westminster terror attack in March, he tweeted “Hard to believe @Karin Smyth MP is on Westminster Bridge still not getting it. #multicultural is bad”.) Only 15 minutes in, Mr Kealey got up and said he was leaving due to “the hostile nature of certain questions.” But he was persuaded to stay by members of the audience and by Ms Smyth, who said: “I commend you for coming, and I think you should stay.” And it was a member of the audience who later walked out, disgusted by Mr Kealey’s accusation that too little was being done for women who were at risk of genital mutilation (FGM) or not allowed to leave their homes or vote. “Bristol is at

the centre of the fight against FGM. You cannot say that,” retorted a woman in the audience. Another accused him of being insulting. The other candidates all said Bristol’s communities were working together to heal divisions. Ms Smyth warned of further divisions in society, and said the Conservatives were becoming more right wing. “My commitment if I’m re-elected is to continue the healing process in our constituency and our city,” she said. Mr Dyer also praised Bristol’s pioneering work against FGM, and said,”If you don’t know about it, I suspect it’s because you don’t want to know.” On refugees, too, there was a a split between UKIP and other parties. Ms Smyth said the problem was massive cuts affecting the city’s ability to help people, while Mr Nutland said there was a complete lack of interest in the issue from the Government. Mr Kealey said “economic migrants” were not refugees – “It’s not their fault, I would do the same,” he said. Ms Smyth said she was “not massively in favour” of new laws to boost equality of pay between men and women. But Labour is committed to tackling the pay gap, and to extending the rights of full-time workers to part-timers. Mr Nutland and Mr Dyer both said legislation would help solve the problem, while Mr Kealey said “naming and shaming” of employers was a better way. Asked what they would do to support women victims of sexual abuse and domestic violence, Mr

Dyer said there needed to be much more investment, and compulsory education for boys and girls on acceptable behaviour. Mr Kealey blamed the absence of “proper male role models” for young men. Ms Smyth said her surgeries were “dominated” by young women trying to find help dealing with domestic violence, especially somewhere they can stay close to their families. Mr Nutland took issue with Mr Kealey, saying he saw no difference between his friends who had grown up with one parent or two. “I’m disappointed that the Tory candidate couldn’t come here tonight to say how cuts in support services will benefit women who are faced with abuse and violence,” he added. Mr Weston later told the Voice that the Tories had pushed the council to ensure that women fleeing domestic violence are given the highest priority on the council’s housing list. The candidates were mostly alarmed at the prospect of deep cuts to the amount schools receive per pupil. This could mean 283 teachers’ jobs lost in Bristol, said Mr Dyer. The Greens are committed to reverse those cuts, and tackle the admin pressures on teachers, he said. Mr Nutland said he had seen teachers buying books and pens for their pupils from their own pockets, which he did not think was defensible in one of the richest countries in the world which is giving “huge tax breaks to the wealthy”. Ms Smyth said Labour (like the Lib Dems) would also reverse the schools cuts. When in government, Labour investment had raised school attainment in Bristol South. Her work as part of the Commons’ public accounts

committee had found that recruitment and retention of teachers was now “a bit of a mess,” she said. “We must encourage people back into the profession.” Mr Kealey, a former teacher, asked: “Why is it that all the best schools are full of posh kids?” UKIP is the only party to give everybody the right stream of education, whether that is training, the possibility of private schooling, or higher education, he said. Mr Weston told the Voice he supported the idea that the school funding formula should be fairer, but he had lobbied the Government against cuts to Bristol schools. He said he welcomed a commitment to increase school funding by £4bn in real terms by 2022, and to make sure no school has its budget cut. • The other candidate who was not at the Bristol Women’s Voice hustings was John Langley, an independent, ex-Lib-Dem and ex-UKIP member, also known as porn filmmaker Johnny Rockard. Mr Langley told the Voice that attending hustings was not a priority for him anyway: “The people I want to work with are not the kind of people who go to hustings,” he said. He said he didn’t think his career in adult films would hinder his campaign, except with people who are “very closeminded”. It showed people that he was only human and he had his faults, he said.

SEE THEM TALK Video interviews with all six candidates: online from May 27 • southbristolvoice.co.uk

ELECTION FOCUS We talk to the candidates Pages 19-25 Their messages to you Pages 19-25 What the bookies say Page 19 The poll predicted  Page 24

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June 2017

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n WEDDING GUIDE   Advertisement feature

Billions more for the NHS after we leave the EU Higher wages for hard-working Bristol families when immigration is controlled Ban the burkha. Stamp out oppression of girls and women in Sharia courts

ukip.org

Access to grammar or private schools for children in Bristol South, not just for rich families in other parts of the city

Bristol South residents have been led along by Labour for too long. UKIP is the only party to understand. We will ban the abuse of workers with zero hours contracts We will ensure care visits at home are of meaningful duration and by properly paid staff (paid for travel time as well as the visit) UKIP will halt cuts to services like Symes House in Hartcliffe Only UKIP cares about the tragedy of deprivation in Bristol South. Under Labour and Tories social mobility in the UK is at a 50 year low. For generations some Bristol families have failed to break through the ‘glass ceiling’ and access ‘middle class’ jobs, higher education, and healthy rewarding lifestyles. We will assist these families, not just pay lip-service like other parties. We will ensure that all children have access to free, appropriately streamed relevant education. We will relieve the poverty of local families that comes from wage compression; we are the only party that accepts local families lose out when we have mass un-skilled immigration. We are the only party to have a measured, controlled, colour-blind sensible policy on immigration. While other parties hide from the truth, UKIP helps.

UKIP candidate Ian Kealey asks for your vote in Bristol South

Other policies include: Reform the House of Lords - Fund 20,000 nurses and 8,000 doctors -Scrap hospital parking fees - Recruit 20,000 police - Honour our war veterans - One legal system for all - Defend hard-won equality

Vote UKIP on 8th June

For more info on how you can help UKIP in Bristol South ring 07881 381309 email office@ukip-bristolsouth.uk or visit www.ukip-bristolsouth.uk

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June 2017

southbristolvoice

n GENERAL ELECTION In alphabetical order of party

Green: Tony Dyer

‘Whether it’s teachers, council workers or junior doctors, people are being pushed to the edge of what they are capable of delivering’

F

OR the Green party, candidate Tony Dyer wants to get into Parliament so he can free councils to build homes again. “Local authorities are not allowed to invest in social housing”, he said, and private developers cannot be relied upon. Bedminster Green, he said, has highlighted the tendency for some developers to push up land prices to a level they know will not allow them to build any affordable homes. The Green group on the city council has forced a rule change that means developers will have to show their figures in future if they claim that social housing is not affordable in a certain development. The next step Tony Dyer, Green Age: 50. Married with a daughter IT training professional. mayoral candidate for Bristol, 2016

which Mr Dyer would like to see is to set a fair value for the land which would allow affordable homes to be built and still allow the developer to make a profit. More widely, he warns of the scale of cuts to hit Bristol’s schools and public services in the name of cutting the national deficit. Former chancellor George Osborne added more to the national debt than all other post-war chancellors combined, while pushing austerity: “This approach is not working,” said Mr Dyer. The way funding is allocated to councils must change, he said. South Bristol’s schools will lose around £10m from their budgets. “Any cut is bad enough but in Bristol South the average cut in primary schools is 50 per cent higher than the national average, and in secondary schools it’s double the average. Why is South Bristol being penalised? This is going to have a massive impact. “Whether it’s teachers, council workers or junior doctors, people are being pushed to the edge of what they are capable of delivering,” he warned. “It’s ruining their quality of life and at some point it’s The candidate’s pitch

T

HE SON of a Bedminsterborn postman and a Knowle West housewife, Tony is very proud of his Bristol heritage. His political views have been shaped to a large degree by his family roots among the Bedminster coalminers and Bristol dock workers, and in particular by the experiences of his grandfather who grew up in slum conditions in the Old Market area. Tony says: “Year after year, decade after decade, Bristol South misses out on major investment as funding goes elsewhere. We have some of the worst levels of deprivation in the country despite living in one of its most successful cities. Bristol South needs an MP willing to stand up and demand to know why that is so - regardless of whether that might be uncomfortable for Labour or Tory party leaders alike. Bristol South needs an MP willing to stand up for them, not just their

party. This election isn’t about the next five years. It’s about the next 50 years. “The Green Party is offering real opposition to this Government’s extreme Brexit. Only the Green Party has the vision to deliver an alternative future for our country, and our place in the world. And only the Green Party offers a different kind of politics. “Every Green vote on June 8 will help make that vision a reality. “To shape an economy for everyone while preserving a safe environment. To build affordable homes and provide properly funded public services. And to put power back in your hands through a citizens’ democracy.” • tonydyerforbristolsouth.org.uk

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We talk to the candidates going to impact on the quality of the service they can deliver to us. I have a friend who works a a porter in the NHS doing 14 hours days. It’s ridiculous.” “There is an element of anger [among people] but it’s more despair. There’s a feeling that the safety net [of the Welfare State] no longer applies. “I have a couple of cousins who are sofa-surfing at the moment. If it wasn’t for the fact that we have a large family, they would probably be among the people sleeping in tents in South Bristol.” He understands why politicians are viewed with cynicism by people who think they don’t change anything; the MPs’ expenses scandal didn’t help. But he says Green policies could help change the landscape in South Bristol. On paper, the constituency has quite a high rate of employment – 74 per cent – but many of those jobs are elsewhere. Major investment in affordable, well-insulated homes in South Bristol, and in sustainable energy, would not only create jobs and skills locally, but provide new homes, and cut Ian Kealey, UKIP Age: 58 Former teacher and nuclear engineer, now runs a guest house in Somerset.

THE BOOKIE’S ODDS

Bristol South, General Election June 8 2017 Labour Karin Smyth

8/13

Conservative Mark Weston     6/5 Green Tony Dyer

100/1

Lib Dem Ben Nutfield

100/1

UKIP Ian Kealey

 100/1

Independent John Langley   200/1 Source: Ladbrokes, May 25 the fuel bills of the people who live in them, he says As Mr Dyer knows very well, having grown up in Hartcliffe, there are two South Bristols – the relatively affluent Victorian streets, and the council estates of Filwood, Hartcliffe and Withywood. Here as many as 25,000 jobs were lost, including the supply chain, when the Wills cigarette factory closed in 1990. It was in these areas that the vote for Brexit was highest.”I think there was an element of ‘we don’t trust politicians’,” he said. But he strongly believes that Continued overleaf The candidate’s pitch

M

Y CAMPAIGN puts Bristol South families first and foremost. Take education for instance. For decades, schools in Britain and in much of Bristol have achieved results below those of countries poorer than us. Too many families in Bristol South have been held back for generation after generation because of a glass ceiling that stops them getting their children into university. I want local families to get a leg up in life with government-funded places in grammar schools, like I had all those years ago. Ever wonder why so many families work hard but can’t afford good holidays? It is a fact: wages have been crushed by easy access to cheap labour from abroad. None of the other parties take immigration seriously! We don’t blame the immigrants seeking a better life (so lefties, don’t try the racist

card on us), we blame the lazy self-serving politicians. Only UKIP will ensure sensible levels of immigration – and ethnic minorities agree with us! To people tempted to vote Labour, consider what a disaster that would be. Their leader refused to sing the national anthem, he makes friends with terrorists, he wants to disarm the nuclear submarines. Above all, Labour has taken Bristol families for granted for decades. To people tempted to vote Conservative, remember, Theresa May is a Remainer! She campaigned to stay in. That is why we must get at least a few UKIP MPs in, to keep up the pressure. Only UKIP will ensure hard-working Bristol families reap the full benefit of Brexit. • ukip-bristolsouth.uk

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June 2017

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General Election 8 June 2017

Mark

WESTON

THE STRONG VOICE FOR BRISTOL SOUTH

THERESA MAY BACKS MARK

Mark Weston is standing with me to secure strong and stable leadership for our country, and the best Brexit deal possible for you and your constituency of Bristol South.

Mark Weston will be a strong voice for your community in my Government, and together we will always stand up for you and your interests. It’s important to remember that a vote for anyone other than Mark Weston here risks Jeremy Corbyn becoming Prime Minister of a shambolic coalition government. So back me with a vote for Mark Weston here in Bristol South on 8th June, and together we can get on with the job of making life in Britain better for everyone. Theresa May, Prime Minister

FIGHTING FOR BRISTOL SOUTH

STICKING UP FOR LOCAL PEOPLE - Labour has taken the area for granted for over 80 years, it’s time for a change.

GETTING BRISTOL SOUTH MOVING - fighting for new rail investment, opposing unneeded 20mph zones and sticky-out bus stops. PROTECTING OUR ENVIRONMENT - cleaner streets, 'green lungs' and delivering the Hartcliffe Way Recycling Centre. FIGHTING TO PROTECT LOCAL SERVICES - campaigning to protect vital local services such as the Jubilee Pool.

BUILDING NEW AFFORDABLE HOUSING - new powers and grants to Bristol City Council to build the next generation of council houses.

MARK WESTON and THERESA MAY STANDING UP FOR BRITAIN Promoted by Kris Murphy, on behalf of Mark Weston, both of 5 Westfield Park, Bristol, BS6 6LT.

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June 2017

southbristolvoice

n GENERAL ELECTION Continued from page 19 “leaving the EU is going to be bad for Bristol South.” Mr Dyer would wait for an exit treaty to be offered to Britain, and then give the people a chance to vote on it. “People need to have the option to say yes, or to say no, that’s not going to work for me and my family.”

‘I want good trade terms with the EU but I don’t want to be run by them. We trade perfectly well with countries like the US without a trade deal’ Conservative: Mark Weston

M

ARK Weston is in with a good chance of winning Bristol South for the Conservatives for the first time in 82 years, according to the pollsters. But he is not taking anything for granted. “My position is that it’s going to be a hard fight and we’ll give it everything we have got,” said the Brentry resident and leader of the Tories on Bristol city council. He presents the battle as one between a Labour party with a weak leader and a confused position on Brexit, and the Conservatives with a clear Brexit message and a strong leader. “I still have no idea what Labour’s European policy is,” he said. He believes that though a majority of people in Bristol South voted to remain in the EU, now the process has begun, most want to see it through. As well as the 47 per cent who voted for Leave in the Brexit poll last year in Bristol South, he believes another quarter of voters “just want us to get on with it.” He “completely rejects” the idea that the country will want a second referendum when people see the terms offered for Brexit. “Would we have voted to be in the EU 42 years ago , knowing what we know now?” he said. “I want good trade terms with the EU but I don’t want to be run by them. We trade perfectly well with countries like the US without a trade deal.” Asked about the fear some European citizens in South Bristol have felt since the Brexit vote,

and the hate attacks on some of them, he said: “There is no excuse for hate crime and no excuse for racism. I would say to European citizens here that the British government wants you to stay, and we have been trying to hold discussions with the EU on this. “We are not going to stop foreign students coming here, and we’re not going to stop companies like Imperial Tobacco and Airbus from recruiting the brightest and the best staff.” A keen fan of railways, he is eager to make improvements on local lines despite the huge rise in the cost of the Portishead line. On the roads, “we shouldn’t be pretending that if we make it worse for the motorist they will get out of their cars.” He wants a review of bus lanes, 20mph zones on main roads, built-out bus stops and junction changes that restrict traffic. He is part of Bristol mayor Marvin Rees’s congestion task force, but says he would walk out if the group tries to recommend a congestion charge for Bristol. He would like to see more competition on Bristol’s buses, letting firms like Abus and Wessex have the chance to run more routes against the dominant First Group. He backed Marvin Rees on rejecting a deal to build the arena, and hopes a new contractor can be found. “I think Bristol wants an arena, but I don’t think we can have it at any cost.” If previous mayor George Ferguson had pursued more car parking this could have helped fund the project, he said. He wants to see more housing in South Bristol but says he is not sure about the high-rise blocks proposed for Bedminster Green and Bath Road – or about the expanded housing plan for Hengrove Park, now upped from 1,000 to 1,500 homes. Asked about his party’s record on austerity, at a time when many South Bristol citizens are suffering from benefits cuts or delays, demand at food banks is at record levels and some people are reduced to sleeping in tents, he said: “We cannot keep spending more than we earn – you can’t in your home, and we cannot as a country.” He pointed to increases in the minimum wage and cuts to tax thresholds as measures which help ordinary people. “We have done what we can to

21

We talk to the candidates try to help. [The other parties] tell you what’s wrong; they are not offering a solution.” On the NHS, he says “The Conservative government has increased funding on the NHS every year since 2010. We have provided an additional £10bn to the NHS, and since 2010 there are now 11,000 more doctors and more than 12,000 additional nurses. This stands in stark contrast to the Labour-run NHS in Wales where spending has been cut by 8 per cent (it’s risen by 9 per cent in England).”

‘People have to feel that they are being included, and not just when the MP holds a surgery every month. Let’s try it my way and see if it works’ Independent: John Langley

I

T’S THE issue of housing that made John Langley decide to stand for election to Parliament. He says he wants to John Langley, Independent Age: ‘irrelvant’; one son Political campaigner; former Lib Dem branch chair, former vice-chair Bristol UKIP, adult film actor and producer

T

HE main reason for me standing is due to the Tory austerity cuts Marvin Rees and his Labour MP colleagues have imposed city-wide, and in particular in Bristol South. The mayor buckled under Tory pressure when the going got tough, instead of showing leadership and telling the Government exactly where to go with their austerity measures. In my estimation the sale of City Hall would have raised somewhere between £150m -£200m and Bristol would have been a more prosperous city with no cuts. I have long said that City Hall is well past its useby date, and Temple Street at least does go some way towards presenting the council as more modernistic in its outlook. It may not be the most attractive of buildings, but at least it looks corporate in 2017 and not

reach out to the mass of people who are almost disengaged from any contact with politics – but who are the ones who needs their politicians the most. He stood in the 2016 election for mayor of Bristol, a process which drove home to him the level of deprivation in places like Filwood and Hartcliffe – on some measures the worst in England and even Europe. It was the huge need to combat this deprivation that made him chose to fight Bristol South, though he lives just outside the constituency in Brislington. Labour mayor Marvin Rees has not kept his pledge to build 2,000 homes a year, he says, and as a member of the same party, former MP Karin Smyth should be held to account too. He has a simple answer to the council’s funding crisis: he would sell City Hall on College Green. (formerly the Council House). “If they sold it for £150 million or whatever it’s worth, perhaps as a hotel, that money could be invested and the services wouldn’t have to be cut.” He also believes Labour, and Continued overleaf The candidate’s pitch

entrenched in the past. Instead of which the poorest and most vulnerable have seen valuable services they rely on either cut to the bone or closed entirely, with children, the elderly and vulnerable adults left in limbo. Manifestos can never, ever be trusted. The personal manifesto of Marvin Rees pledged the building of 2,000 new homes a year, which turns out to be nothing more than a vote-catching Labour scam. In his campaign the mayor stated the following: “I see a party that is about standing beside people who have been left out by the establishment.” Funnily enough, so do the people of Bristol South. Which is why they will turn away from Labour on June 8. • thinkdifference.co.uk

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n HISTORY

June 2017

Re-elect Karin    Smyth The first Bristol airport as your great local MP

Here in Bristol South it’s a straight choice between me - a communityfocused Labour candidate with a great track record of hard work - or a Tory, pushing NHS and school funding cuts... and a hard Brexit.

@KarinSmythforBristolSouth @KarinSmyth 0117 902 0290

P P P P

A strong active local campaigning Labour MP fighting your corner, focusing on your community every step of the way. Fighting to improve access to GPs & pharmacies, and services at South Bristol Community Hospital. Labour promises an additional £30 billion for our NHS. Securing the best Brexit deal possible, with access to trade and good quality job opportunities. Day 1 protection for EU citizens here & UK nationals abroad. A commitment to reversing Tory cuts to our schools and free lifelong education enabling everyone to upskill or retrain at any point in life.

Thursday 8 June

FOR THE MANY NOT THE FEW To advertise, contact sales@southbristolvoice.co.uk or Ruth on 07590 527664 Promoted by Robert Massey on behalf of Karin Smyth both at 74 Chessel Street, Bristol, BS3 3DN

Bristol S Voice Advert FINAL.indd 1

17/05/2017 15:15:43


June 2017

southbristolvoice

n GENERAL ELECTION Continued from page 21 Mr Rees, should refuse to implement Tory cuts. “He caved in when he needn’t have done,” said Mr Langley. “Labour has made the city worse rather than better.” He reels off a list of cuts he believes are damaging the services most needed by the poorest, like the sudden closure of the Symes Avenue council service point in Hartcliffe, and cuts to local sexual health services, which he says could lead to teenage pregnancy rates, which have been falling, going up again. This is an area with the lowest internet use in the UK, meaning people can’t so easily get help with things like paying their council tax.” How many people are going to get county court judgements against them, he asked. Mr Langley believes he would be failing people if he was elected as MP and then spent most of his time in Westminster. “I don’t believe that you can do anything for an area that’s going down and down if you are working remotely,” he said. He would set up a local base with a community worker to listen to people’s concerns and then set priorities for dealing with the areas’s social issues, “to give people hope and aspiration, looking at skills, how to engage with employers.” He wants to see older people who have skills pass them on to the young: retired carpenters, for example, “and what about the boy racers who might want something from really excellent mechanics?” He would employ someone in Westminster but would only go to Parliament if it was essential. If, after 18 months, people felt he wasn’t succeeding, he would hold a referendum which could call for him to resign. “The crime rate is going up. It’s not a pretty picture for South Bristol,” he said. “The kind of people I want to work with are those who are worried about how they are going to pay their electricity bill and how they will feed their families. It’s about engaging with people who are hardest to engage with. “People have to feel that they are being included, and not just when the MP holds a surgery every month. “Because I’m not from a

political party, it’s the community who are my bosses, my employers.” He has no manifesto: he believes they create only a list of promises that won’t be kept. Instead he pledges to listen to people to find out what their problems are, and to be judged on how he acts. “Let’s try it my way and see if it works; if not I will resign.”

‘Theresa May wants Bristol South to have a Tory MP so that she can do whatever the hell she wants’ Labour: Karin Smyth

K

ARIN Smyth has a message she wants to get   across: vote for me, or you’ll elect a Conservative MP. “The Conservatives have always been the main challenger here,” she said. But she believes many voters don’t understand this, or that there is a sizeable UKIP vote in Bristol South too. “There are pockets of the patch that think the Tories aren’t the opposition.” So the (unspoken) message is clear: if you’re a Labour voter tempted to make a protest vote, perhaps about Brexit, you won’t be helping the Lib Dems or the Greens, you will be helping to elect a Conservative. She doesn’t mention her party leader. Even here, in Labour’s strongest seat in the whole South West, Jeremy Corbyn is political Marmite. It’s clear she won’t be inviting him on the campaign trail: “I wanted a different leader. I lost that vote, I rolled up my sleeves and got on with it. “I told people I would work hard on apprenticeships and housing, and my own passionate expertise, health – the first thing I did was to get a campaign going for South Bristol Hospital, which I think is so important for the area.” She’s aware that some of her natural supporters are upset that she voted to trigger Article 50 to leave the EU. “I have been very clear. I have campaigned for the EU in every election since 1988. I wanted to stay, I lost that vote, I rolled up my sleeves and got on

23

We talk to the candidates with it, the same as I did with the [party] leader.” Karin is parliamentary private asecretary to shadow Brexit secretary Sir Keir Starmer, and is proud of the work they have done to hold the Conservatives to account. “I want to get across to those very passionate remain voters who feel that I haven’t done my job, I have heard that anger.” The Government has said we will get the same deal as we have now on trade terms from Europe after Brexit, she said. “In Labour we have set our six tests for a deal. If they are not met then we cannot vote for it.” But this isn’t the same as the Lib Dems’ promise of a second referendum, which she calls “nonsensical”. “Theresa May wants Bristol South to have a Tory MP so that she can do whatever the hell she wants. She said she wants the exact same benefits, so let’s have them, and see what it looks like. “Our job is to bring her back and scrutinise her time and time again. I’m not stopping the PM negotiating, I’m making sure the PM gets the best deal for the people of Bristol South. I will be Ben Nutfield, Liberal Democrat Age: 25 MD of food company, UNICEF UK Children’s Champion

welcoming Kier Starmer to Bristol South to talk to people about that.” She condemns Theresa May for calling an opportunistic General Election with the aim of greater unity at Westminster: “It’s quite shocking. It’s arrogance to assume that she needs a united Westminster. That’s not my job – it’s my job to speak up for the people of Bristol South. “It’s a divided constituency, socially and economically, and one of my tasks is to represent everybody and bring them together.” As evidence of this, she cites the first South Bristol jobs and apprenticeships fair, which she organised; her efforts to boost services at South Bristol hospital; and her Money Entitlement events to help people claim what they are due. Karin was not keen for Bristol to have an elected mayor, seeing it as an extra layer of bureaucracy, and she thinks the new role of West of England mayor is even worse: “People don’t want it, they don’t understand it.” She welcomes developments Continued overleaf The candidate’s pitch

B

EN is a committed campaigner, working hard to represent the people of Bristol South. He was inspired to join the Liberal Democrats by Charles Kennedy and his opposition to the Iraq War – since then he has been a passionate advocate for local people, working hard to make sure their voices are heard at the local and parliamentary level. As a UNICEF Children’s champion in the South West, Ben is working hard to ensure the Government understands the plight of the people of Syria. On a national level, Ben is working with the US Embassy in London as a member of its Young Leaders UK initiative, helping to foster stronger relations between our countries. The programme has involved President Barack Obama, US Secretary of State John Kerry and the Rev Jesse Jackson. Ben was born in Bristol and moved to the nearby village of

Chipping Sodbury at a young age. Since leaving school, he has worked in the food industry and is now managing director of a locally-based international export company. When he is not knocking on doors, Ben enjoys spending time with his family in the Cotswold countryside. In Bristol South, Ben wants to see more affordable housing and action on rising rent and house prices; our treasured parks looked after and protected; improved transport links and investment in sustainable transport; a clean air zone in Bristol to cut dangerous air pollution; and jobs and housing placed at Hengrove Park in a way that leaves enough parkland for local people to enjoy. • bristollibdems.org

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n GENERAL ELECTION A PREDICTION FROM ELECTORAL CALCULUS • electoralcalculus.co.uk PREDICTED VOTE SHARE JUNE 2017 LABOUR 37.4% CONSERVATIVE 38.5% UKIP 6.3% GREEN 7.7% LIBERAL DEMOCRAT 9.4% OTHER 0.7% Majority CONSERVATIVE

June 2017

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CHANCE OF WINNING, JUNE 2017 LABOUR 41% CONSERVATIVE 50% UKIP 1% GREEN 2% LIBERAL DEMOCRAT 7% INDEPENDENT 0%

1.1% Electoral Calculus claims to be the longest-running predictor of UK general elections. It uses poll data and survey information about the strength of support among a party’s voter base. It claims to be more often right than wrong but like all predictions this one is, at best, an educated guess.

BRISTOL SOUTH RESULTS, GENERAL ELECTION 2015   VOTES SHARE LABOUR Karin Smyth 19,505 38.4% CONSERVATIVE Isobel Grant 12,377 24.3% UKIP Steve Wood 8,381 16.5% GREEN Tony Dyer 5,861 11.5% LIBERAL DEMOCRAT Mark Wright 4,416 8.7% TUSC Tom Baldwin 302 0.6% Majority LABOUR

Karin Smyth, Labour Age: 52, married, three sons NHS manager, MP for Bristol South 2015-2017

7,128

14.0%

The candidate’s pitch

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hen I was elected in 2015 I promised to work hard for local communities, focusing on my priorities of health & social care; jobs and skills; and housing. And I promised to listen hard to local people, representing your interests in Bristol and in Westminster. I’ve been working hard to honour my promises: • Organised the first South Bristol Jobs and Apprenticeships Fair: over 400 people got career and skills support; • Campaigned to improve services at South Bristol Community Hospital, Hengrove; • Worked with Bristol mayor Marvin Rees to start building more housing for local people; • Arranged popular Money Entitlement events, to help residents get their financial entitlements; • Campaigned in Parliament to improve safety of towed trailers and air rifles after

We talk to the candidates Continued from page 23 in South Bristol, particularly around Temple Meads and Bedminster Green, partly because she sees the need for new homes as the biggest priority “by a country mile”. She says it is up to the council to decide whether the buildings are high-rise or not. But she is concerned to ensure that community benefits, such as doctors’ surgeries, are planned from the beginning. “At Bedminster Green there’s a concern about how it’s approached –its a very important area for the whole consituency. “I would like the council to have someone in charge to look at the entire area, in totality, not have these little pockets [considered individually]. She hopes Bristol gets its long-awaited arena, but she wants residents’ concerns listened to about parking, congestion and pollution.

‘There’s a whole new generation of young people who are committed to public service because they want to make a change’ Liberal Democrat: Ben Nutland

residents who’d experienced tragedies asked me for help. I’ve been using my position as your MP to make progress on all these things and more. And because I’ve held regular advice surgeries, and frequently listen to residents’ views on their doorsteps, I know there’s so much more to do. I want to carry on fighting for local people. I can only continue to do this if you re-elect me to carry on this vital work. In Bristol South it’s a straight choice between me – a Bristolfocused Labour candidate with a great track record of hard work – or a Tory candidate, pushing a hard Brexit. I’m asking you to please use your vote on June 8 for Labour so I can carry on making our area better. • karinsmyth.com/election-2017

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EN Nutland believes he is one of a new breed: a generation of young people who are entering politics out of commitment to public service. At 25, he’s the youngest of the candidates standing for Bristol South by a long way. Already the managing director of his own company (Britannia Foods, which exports British food brands to ex-pats around the world) he decided to enter politics because he believes Britain must change. Like so many of his generation, he’s working hard but still lives at home with his parents (in Yate). He said: ”There’s a whole new generation of young people who are committed to public service because they want to make a change. “We are the most educated generation in history yet we cannot afford our own houses. “We have seen university

graduates come out with the best degrees they could get and they cannot get a job. “I belong to a generation which I believe will change the direction of this country.” But despite being an idealist, he hasn’t turned to extremes of left or right. “I think the Lib Dems are the only really sensible party out there. “The Green party aren’t strong enough. The Tories have lurched far to the right – they are not One Nation Tories any more, while Labour have gone to the left of Michael Foot.” He claims decades of Labour MPs have let down Bristol South, which still suffers deprivation, poor educational attainment, and a lack of local jobs. It is set to be hit even harder by massive cuts to school funding and an NHS “at breaking point”. He believes a hard exit from the EU will make matters even worse for South Bristolians. He rejects criticism that the Lib Dem’s promise of a referendum on the eventual Brexit deal is trying to replay a decision that has already been decided by the British people. “It’s not a second vote, it’s our first vote on a deal,” he said. “I think we are heading for a hard Brexit, and that will affect families, working class and middle class people in Bristol South. It’s got to be signed off by the British people, not by Theresa May.” The irony for the Lib Dems is that the people in Bristol South who voted decisively for Brexit were those in the more deprived areas – the people the Lib Dems say will suffer most from its consequences. “There is a big campaign to cast the EU as the evil empire. But when I start to talk to people in Bristol South about how it [Brexit] might affect their lives, they are really worried. The trouble is the Government haven’t told people how they will be able to cope with rising food prices and rising fuel prices, and how we will be able to trade with other countries. “When you explain the consequences to them, they say they might have done something different,” he claims. He’s realistic about his chances of winning this time, though he points to last month’s West of England mayoral

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n GENERAL ELECTION election, in which the Lib Dems came second in Bristol South. If he did become MP, he says he will get straight on with forging alliances in the traditional Lib Dem away and work with councillors, the mayor and with business. He wants to bring actions on housing, protect the area’s parks, invest in sustainable transport, bring in a clean air zone in Bristol, and build at Hengrove Park in a way that leaves enough green space for people to enjoy.

‘If I can get South Bristol families to stop and think what the Tories and Labour have achieved for them, I think they will look at UKIP in a more favourable light’ UKIP: Ian Kealey

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AN Kealey is keen to tackle the perception that his party is a prejudiced one, or that it tolerates racism. “UKIP’s policies are clear – as far as racism is concerned, we are the least racist party. We are the only party which has a points based policy for immigration, which is colourblind. That’s better than the current system – at the moment the door gets slammed in the face of people from India, for example, in favour of people from Estonia or another part of Europe. “There was the I word – immigration – which we were warned we weren’t allowed to discuss, we were slapped down as racists for even mentioning it. But it affects people’s lives. “Now the ‘I’ word is integration. We want the UK to be a tolerant nation and make sure everyone shares that and

NO CANDIDATE FROM THE TUSC THERE will be no candidate for the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) in Bristol South this year. This time, the TUSC is backing Labour candidates in an attempt to get Jeremy Corbyn as Prime Minister. Tom Baldwin, former TUSC Bristol mayoral and Bristol

works together with a clear set of values. Racism in the party is not tolerated, he said. “What can you do about it? When we find out we kick them out. You have nasty people who are in the Tories and in the Labour party and when they mouth off they don’t get the publicity that our cuckoos do. I think people were confused 10 years ago what UKIP stood for, there were problems, but I don’t think we have that problem now.” Ian was a member of the Conservative Party when he lived in Bishopston, but joined UKIP in 2010, frustrated at Conservative and Labour policies on Europe. “The EU is doomed because it raises two fingers at people and at democracy. It ignores what people want. It has a terrible record on holding referendums on various issues and ignoring the result and carrying on. There’s been virtually no public referendum that voted for the EU. The UK referendum in 1975 was not for a political union. “Democracy works best through national governments,” he said. “It’s so frustrating when people say that UKIP’s work is finished. It’s really gratifying that so much of our policy has been adopted, and if anyone wants to know what the Labour or Tory policies will be in five years time they only have to look to us! “If I can get South Bristol families to stop and think what the Tories and Labour have achieved for them, I think they will look at UKIP in a more favourable light.” His favoured topic is education: he was a mathematics teacher from 1995 to 2003. He taught in Hartcliffe briefly, in Bishopston, Fishponds, Badminton and elsewhere, at state and private schools. “The best schools around the country are packed with the children of the wealthiest South parliamentary candidate said: “I’ve stood for TUSC in Bristol South at the last two general elections but I won’t be putting myself forward this time. “This is the first election I‘ve been able to vote in where there is a chance of electing a prime minister who will actually look to change the direction the country’s going in and put forward policies to help ordinary people.”

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We talk to the candidates families, you look at the legal profession and even our Olympic medal winners and you see they were dominated by private school people. “It’s because families like those in South Bristol have been kept back, there’s no one helping them. “They need access to private or grammar schools. We have Sidcot down the road. We would look at what grammar provision we could have in every city. I had a very good grammar-type education at a direct grant school and I think that should be available for hard-working families in Bristol South. “I won’t be lectured to by the Tories or Labour about education. You have to stream the kids to succeed at education, and put the appropriate material in front of them at every level. “I admire our local UKIP people who are very switched on to local concerns. “My own survey on traffic on my website found that people voted two to one for reducing congestion and getting the roads moving, against the view that cars are a menace. I’m not against cycleways as long as they don’t forget the private motorist.” Mark Weston, Conservative Age: 36, married, two children. Conservative leader at Bristol city council

PREVIOUS ELECTIONS IN BRISTOL SOUTH THE constituency of Bristol South has been a Labour seat since 1935, but not always by a large majority. Karin Smyth’s margin of victory in 2015 was more than 7,000 votes over the Conservatives. Her predecessor, Labour Cabinet minister Dawn Primarolo, won by just under 5,000 votes in 2010, beating the second-placed Lib Dems. In 2005 Ms Primarolo had a margin of more than 11,000 over the Lib Dems. Before that, in every poll back to 1935, Labour beat the Tories into second place. The narrowest margin of victory was in 1987, when Ms Primarolo first won Bristol South, taking 1,400 more votes than the Conservative contender. The Tories won the seat just once in the 20th century – in 1931, when Noel Ker Lindsay won 9,500 more votes than Labour’s Alexander Walkden. Before that, the Liberals won all six elections back to 1906. The candidate’s pitch

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BELIEVE that Bristol South has been let down by Labour and needs a new voice at Westminster. Locally I will be campaigning to expand our public transport network and improve traffic flow in our communities. I will be opposing the over-development of Hengrove Park, fighting to protect local amenities (like Jubilee Pool), seeking to deliver the Hartcliffe Way Recycling Centre and securing investment to improve our local shopping centres like Filwood Broadway. This election, more than any other I think in my lifetime, matters because of the international ramifications and I think that before casting their vote residents in South Bristol have a series of questions to ask themselves about who they want to be Prime Minister: • Who do you trust with our national security? Jeremy Corbyn, a man who described terrorist groups as ‘friends’, or

Theresa May who has already proven her mettle as Home Secretary? • Who do you trust to run the economy? Jeremy Corybn, a leader who praises Marxist economics or Theresa May, who as part of the Government has grown the economy? • Who do you trust to be in charge of Brexit negotiations? Jeremy Corbyn, who has no clear direction and a divided party, or Theresa May, who has a clear strategy and has the grit and drive to get a good deal? A vote for me is a vote for Theresa May, a vote for anyone else makes it more likely that we could have Jeremy Corbyn in Downing Street with dubious friends, outdated economics and no plan for Brexit Britain. • markweston.org.uk

Got a story or any other inquiry? Call Paul on 07811 766072 or email paul@southbristolvoice.co.uk


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June 2017

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Officers were right to grab man off his bike and cuff him, says watchdog A PROBE by the police watchdog has ruled that police did nothing wrong when an officer dived at a man on a bike in an Ashton street in order to arrest him. Two Avon and Somerset Police officers have been completely cleared after a 12-month investigation into claims of gross misconduct. The man broke his shinbone as the tumbled to the ground with the policeman PC B, and he had to be taken to hospital. He later alleged another officer, PC A, had stolen his mobile phone. But a staff nurse at the Bristol Royal Infirmary confirmed the police account that the man had raised his fist at a female police office, and called her a c***. The man was so abusive she told police she wouldn’t treat him unless officers were present. The drama began at 11.30pm on April 8, 2016, when three police officers, on patrol in a police carrier, saw a man cycling on the pavement in Hendre Road. He had no lights, he was wearing dark clothing and had gloves on. There had been burglaries in the area and the officers decided to stop the man. But he managed to cycle down a side street, and they lost him. Ten minutes later they caught sight of him in Sturdon Road. They tried to stop him, but he rode off and PC B grabbed at his rucksack, pulling him off his bike. The man claimed the officers held him face down and handcuffed for several minutes even though he shouted that they had broken his leg. He told the IPCC he had been riding around looking for scrap wood. He had been stopped by the police before, and didn’t want his privacy invaded, so he had avoided them. In a statement, he said: ”I appreciate that PC B wished to stop me; however, the unacceptably high risk of my suffering a serious injury by

No case to answer, says IPCC, even though man broke his leg in arrest being dragged from my bike should have been obvious to him. “I was on my bike whilst the officers were in a van. There is no reason why they could not have followed me until it was safe to detain me.” The investigator from the IPCC did not accept any of the man’s allegations: “As the complainant had continued to cycle away from officers despite being chased and asked several times to stop, it is my opinion that PC B had no other means of getting him off his bike other than to lay hands on him and take him off in the way he did.” Witnesses to the arrest made no mention of any brutality. And a statement from the nurse at the A&E department at the BRI said the man had been very abusive. Supt Richard Corrigan said: “We referred this matter to the IPCC immediately, in line with national procedure. “The IPCC’s report concluded the complainant’s behaviour was suspicious and the officers were entitled to stop him and use force when he failed to stop for them. “We welcome the IPCC’s findings, which ruled our officers had no case to answer for misconduct and confirmed they carried out a lawful stop search arrest in difficult circumstances.” The man also claimed that PC A had stolen his phone when she returned his bike to his house while he was in hospital. But, the IPPC investigator said, he offered no evidence. His account of the events that took place while he was in hospital was not supported by anyone else. “Therefore, Complainant A’s reliability as a witness is in issue.”

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27

n MY WILD BEDMINSTER

WILDLIFE SPECIAL

There’s such a lot of wildlife out there on our doorstep

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ELCOME to all nature lovers of South Bristol. You are invited to join 2017’s biggest, easiest and most fun community wildlife project for all residents, schools, community groups and visitors here in BS3. If you live, work in, or visit the BS3 postcode areas of South Bristol, we are inviting you to go on a wild adventure in your local green space, send us your records – and have fun taking part in our wildlife art and photography challenge. We are interested in all wildlife sightings in Bedminster, Ashton, Southville, Windmill Hill and elsewhere in BS3. Our aim is to find, identify and celebrate local wildlife, and, while out on our urban safari, look closely at our local patch, and think about how we can improve habitat to welcome and support better biodiversity. We are visiting schools to give advice. More fun ideas and links for getting involved are given below. DIFFERENT WAYS TO GET INVOLVED • iSPOT: Take photos of any species found in BS3 and share them on our free My Wild Bedminster iSpot page use the website or phone app, where experts will help you identify anything. Simply upload your

OTHER FUN WILDLIFE PROJECTS YOU CAN JOIN JOIN WILDLIFE RECORDING GROUPS: Several charities would like your wildlife records to help with science and conservation. Most offer excellent online advice and resources. Check out: KIDS’ FUN WITH CATERPILLARS • munchingcaterpillars.org MAP YOUR HEDGEHOG! • hedgehogstreet.org GO BATTY • bats.org.uk GARDENING TIPS FOR POLLINATORS • avonwildlifetrust.org.uk/ getbristolbuzzing

TV presenter Andy Day is backing our My Wild Bedminster appeal, writes Alex Morss. Overleaf, entries to our photo competition photos with a date, your name and the location of the sighting (i.e. which green space or road name). Do not worry if you are not sure of the identification we will help with that. You will be able to see everyone else’s sightings too, and compare wild discoveries from other neighbourhoods with your own. You can also comment on here or have a go at identifying any of the species photographed, if you wish. • ispotnature.org/projects/mywild-bedminster-alexmorss • FACEBOOK: post your sightings on the South Bristol Voice Facebook page: • facebook.com/ southbristolvoice/ BUTTERFLY RECORDING FOR ALL AGES • butterfly-conservation. org/279/somerset-and-bristolbranch.html GARDEN BIRDWATCH • bto.org/volunteer-surveys/gbw VOLUNTEER • avonwildlifetrust.org.uk/ volunteer HELP MONITOR WILDFLOWERS • npms.org.uk And finally ... • HOW GREEN IS MY ALLEY is a fun recording activity pack designed for Bristol residents; you can download it: • brerc.org.uk/downloads/ HGIMA_print.pdf

Andy Day: Children’s TV presenter will judge children’s art. Inset, some of the photo entries: find out who’s won this month’s prize on p29 • SEND RECORDS: If you prefer to just send a list of wildlife records, without photos, please email the records (including who, what, where

and when it was seen) to: benbarker@blueyonder.co.uk • MORE IDEAS OVER THE PAGE – AND OUR PHOTO WINNERS

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n MY WILD BEDMINSTER Photo contest RUNNER-UP

WILDLIFE SPECIAL

Photo contest RUNNER-UP

Fox: Snapped by Olly Glover, using his phone, out late in Windmill Hill Continued from page 28 • CHILDREN’S ART COMPETITION: All children (under 16s) are invited to submit their artwork of wildlife they have found in BS3 to us at the address below. Perhaps something you’ve seen in your garden, park, alley, school, allotment or church yard for

example. Tell us where you found the plant or animal and include any interesting information about your chosen species too, if you wish. Children’s wildlife TV presenter Andy Day will be helping to judge the winners. There are prizes and a chance to have your work shown at a public exhibition later this year.

Toad: Not so common in cities but seen by Claire Smith, Stackpool Road • PHOTOGRAPHY: Our monthly wildlife photography competition is open to all ages – not including professional photographers – inviting you to share your wildlife photos. They have to be taken in BS3, and they must have been taken this year. There’s a £10 prize for the best entry every month. Both

The very best in retirement living The St Monica Trust holds regular open days at our unique Monica Wills House retirement community where you will be escorted on a guided tour by one of our residents. Offering all the advantages of independent living, but with a strong feeling of community spirit, these well-appointed 1 and 2 bedroom apartments are situated in the heart of Bedminster and provide social activities when you want them, and access to care and support when you need it.

pool, a roof terrace with panoramic view of the Bristol skyline and a host of other facilities.

Located just off West Street, Monica Wills House has a fully licensed restaurant, gym/

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competitions end on September 15, 2017. • HOW TO ENTER: Just send your artwork or photographs of the wildlife you spot on your wild adventures anywhere in BS3 to: paul@southbristolvoice.co.uk or post them to: South Bristol Voice, 18 Lilymead Avenue, Bristol BS4 2BX.

Why not come along to our next open day on Tuesday 11 July? Call 0117 919 4267 for details.

To book your place, or to join our re-sales mailing list, call 0117 919 4267. Or type ow.ly/a39s307mSEP into your browser to find out more.

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n MY WILD BEDMINSTER

29

WILDLIFE SPECIAL

What else has been seen in BS3?

PHOTO WINNER

WHY ARE YOUR WILDLIFE SIGHTINGS IMPORTANT? As highlighted by Sir David Attenborough and the authors of the State of Nature Report 2016, urban wildlife populations have suffered serious declines. Bedminster appears to be particularly poor for wildlife, yet we can choose to change this.

Reader Sandra Lee saw this nest of wriggling caterpillars in Bedminster. She thought they would grow into moths; and the wonderful online community at iSpot identified them as caterpillars of the Lackey moth. It’s common in the UK, found in woodland, hedgerows and road verges. Sandra wins our £10 monthly prize – congratulations!

BUTTERFLIES Sightings complied by Ben Barker Osborne Road Holly Blue First seen on April 6. Flies quickly and quite high around bushes. Several seen (the same one?) in later days and one netted on April 8. Released unharmed. Maximum number seen at one time was two. Still around on 22 and 23 April. Speckled Wood In the garden on April 9. And 10 and 11. Orange Tip Male flying through garden on April 9. In a hurry. Acta theatre garden, Gladstone Street Probably Holly Blues, April 18. Windmill Hill City Farm April 22 Brimstone: very yellow probably a male. Possible Small White. Definite Green-veined White, Orange Tip (male) and Holly Blues. Hoped to see a Speckled Wood, but no luck. May 7 Brimstone (several or the same one flying around), male. Several whites flying at a distance: Small White and Orange Tip identified. Probable Holly Blue. May 10 Brimstone, Orange Tip (female) and Holly Blue. May 19 Brimstone, Holly Blue, Green-veined White, Red Admiral and possible Wood White. BIRDS

From the BS3 Winter bird survey, by 23 residents Common species (no. of sightings) Sparrow (104), Dunnock (59), Starling (29), Wood Pigeon (104), Feral Pigeon (58), Wren (26), Blackbird (92), Great tit (51), Crow (19), Robin (83), Collared dove (36), Blackcap (11), Blue tit (82), Long-tailed tit (36), Jackdaw (11), Magpie (69), Goldfinch (35), Coal tit (10). Infrequently seen species Greater Spotted Woodpecker (9), Willow tit (3), Jay (8), Marsh tit (2), Pied Wagtail (8), Chiffchaff (2), Goldcrest (6), Garden Warbler (2), Grey Wagtail (6), Green Woodpecker (2), Sparrowhawk (6), Rook (1). • More on the BS3 Bird Survey at southbristolvoice.co.uk

Could you see yourself as a student? “I left school at 16. It never would have occurred to me to go to university. I loved the course. It opens your mind to what you can get out of a book.” Come along for an informal chat on Tuesday 13 June 2017 6pm to 8pm School of Humanities University of Bristol 3/5 Woodland Road, Bristol BS8 1TB

BA in English Literature and Community Engagement (ELCE) This course runs part time, one evening class per week. Tel +44 (0)117 954 5960 Email gareth.griffith@bristol.ac.uk

bristol.ac.uk/ELCE Got a story or any other inquiry? Call Paul on 07811 766072 or email paul@southbristolvoice.co.uk


June 2017

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n FEATURES

SOUTHBANK ARTS TRAIL

Crowded house: Venue 46, in Upton Road, had 400 visitors a day. ‘We were once again overwhelmed by the success of the trail and all love being part of this excellent event’, said textile artist Angie Parker Hat’s amazing: Some of the creations made with found materials at Let’s Make Art sessions run by Karen Louise Davies at the Tobacco Factory

Stephen Quick: Returning to the Tobacco Factory yard for live painting

On the trail of good art BLESSED once again with a sunny weekend, the Southbank Arts Trail attracted thousands of visitors on May 13 and 14. The variety of activities had to be seen to be believed, as well as the novel way they were presented. At craft shop Paper Village, people got together to start crocheting BrisCroc – the mythical Bristol crocodile, being reimagined under the leadership of Vicky Harrison. In the back garden of a house in Hamilton Road, visitors sat under the trees in a pocket-sized acoustic music venue. St Francis’ church welcomed all who wanted to raise their voices in a community choir. And South Bristol’s acclaimed drama company BraveBold Drama took over Margot May tearoom for a series of original performances – not long after winning the Arts category in the

Bristol Life awards. Meanwhile, 150 artists had their work on show in 25 houses and other venues from the Tobacco Factory to Acta theatre. Children had lots to do, from junk modelling at St Aldhelm’s church to chapati-making sessions run by Let’s Make Art at the Thali café. Trail co-ordinator Ruth Ander said the variety of events was deliberate. “We are a very broad arts trail, perhaps because it’s a community event and we get a really broad spectrum,” she said. No one knows how many people are attracted to the occasion, though some home venues in Southville record 400 or 500 visitors a day. Ruth is stepping down as the trail co-ordinator – if you’d like to get involved in next year’s event, go to: • Facebook: SouthBank Arts

Flat out: Chapati making, Thali café

Mary-ann: A drama by BraveBold

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LETTERS

Send letters to paul@southbristolvoice.co.uk or to 18 Lilymead Ave, BS4 2BX

Wrong place for Memories of a bookish café the old airport I NOTE your piece on the proposed bookshop/café at the Old Fire Station in Raleigh Road (South Bristol Voice, May 2017). You mentioned the co-owner describes herself as a bookseller. Well, that company is now dissolved and under her current directorship (see Companies House) she describes herself as a publican. It’s also stated they have dropped a plan to sell alcohol ... but what do you do when you drop something? Yes, pick it up, especially when A3 permission is being sought for a café; eventually you’ll need an alcohol licence like their other pub/café. No, I’m afraid it’s entirely in the wrong location for a multitude of reasons which Charlie Bolton suggests, along with (at the time of writing) over 25 other objectors. In any case aren’t there enough cafés/coffee shops/bars in staggering distance? Frank Evans, Bedminster

I MOVED to Salcombe Road in about 1950, so Whitchurch Airport was still active (Bristol’s first airport, South Bristol Voice, May 2017). I remember cycling along the perimeter road (now Bamfield) and watching aircraft coming into land, almost clipping the houses in Walsh Avenue. At that time the main service was provided by Cambrian DC3-s, but also Aer Lingus De Havilland Doves, Herons and Dragon Rapides. Sometimes Bristol Freighters came in. The most exciting thing was to watch a DC3 revving up at the end of the runway and then roaring over, seemingly a few feet up! I passed the Happy Landings many times over the years, but sadly never thought to take any photos of the sign. I remember, though, that the Brabazon featured for some years (probably in the 1950s), then the Britannia (possibly in the 1960s/70s). I never got to fly from Whitchurch, but did fly to Jersey

in 1964/5 from Lulsgate, in Cambrian DC3s (or as the airline called them Pionairs). My late father worked at the north side on engine repairs from about 1950 to closure. This was probably the reason for our move to Knowle. Dad worked on the Bristol Hercules engines used mainly on transport aircraft such as the Bristol Freighter and Beverley. The Freighters at Whitchurch were operated by Silver City. Malcolm Williams, Knowle

Memory trail ST GEORGE’S Bristol was a church for over 160 years until 1984. Now it is a concert hall, and, as foundations are laid for the venue’s two-storey extension, staff are keen to know more about the building’s past. If you attended St George’s Brandon Hill and have an interesting story to share, please get in touch with me on 0117 929 4929, or email doreen.pastor@stgeorgesbristol. co.uk Doreen Pastor St George’s Bristol

POLICE REPORT We’re trying to support street drinkers, but you can help too

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F YOU’RE being affected by crime or anti-social behaviour, make sure you report it. All too often, people will assume we already know about an issue or someone else has called us, but it’s not always the case. The more information we have, the better. We’re getting an increasing number of complaints about street drinking, begging and rough sleeping in and around East Street and North Street. Our Streetwise team, which consists of a dedicated police officer and council officer, has been visiting the area but needs more information from local people. The officers know and work closely with many street drinkers and rough sleepers across the city, to assist them in accessing

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the treatment and support they need while balancing the needs of local residents and businesses. Please report locations and individuals to us so we can target our patrols – the more specific the better, including locations, timings and descriptions. Remember, if you’re concerned about the welfare of someone who is sleeping rough, you can report it using the Street Link service: • streetlink.org.uk Or, in an emergency, call 999.

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f you took part in the Bristol 10k, you may have suffered the humiliation of a team of nine Broadbury Road-based officers overtaking you in full riot gear! The team, equipped with shields and helmets, each dragged round 30lb of kit to raise money for Mind’s Blue Light Programme and Macmillan Cancer Support.

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e’ve relaunched our Safe Places service, a 24/7 number to help people with communication difficulties stay safe when they are out. Once

Cyclists need a wider path YESTERDAY I cycled home through Victoria Park. I always go at a slow speed in the park. I rang my bell to alert a jogger up ahead, but they had earphones on and obviously didn’t hear because as I passed they swerved and almost hit me. Had we collided, that would have been their fault. Then a little further on, a dog on a lead ran towards me and the owner was unable to control it. This gave me a fright, as I had been attacked by a dog in a park last year and ended up bloodied. Had we collided, that would have been the dog owner’s fault. If there is a wider path, with more space for people to safely pass, then neither of these problems would arise. Victoria Park needs a better, wider path, for the benefit of all. It’s only common sense. I hope this can come to pass with the revised scheme. It is very much needed! Fred Smith, Knowle

With Sgt Caroline Crane Broadbury Road police station

Riotous behaviour: Nine officers ran the Bristol 10k in full riot gear registered, an individual can call the Safe Places number if they find themselves in a crisis, such as if they are lost, feel scared or upset and don’t know what to do, or if they have been a victim of crime. The number has a direct link to the police control room. If this could help you or someone you know, find out more here: • avonandsomerset.police.uk/ safeplaces

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can’t let the June edition pass without a reminder not to let the warmer weather make you

complacent about security at home. If you go out, ensure your doors and windows are closed and locked. Also, if you’re in the back garden, lock your front door and close the windows. Finally, the Bedminster neighbourhood team holds beat surgeries at the beginning of each month at Ashton Vale community centre. The details are on our website – do take the chance to pop along and discuss any policing issues affecting you. Until next time, Sergeant Caroline Crane

Got a story or any other inquiry? Call Paul on 07811 766072 or email paul@southbristolvoice.co.uk


June 2017

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32

ADVICE FROM A PHARMACIST risk. Belly (or abdominal) fat Go on, take the ataround our midriff is also known as subcutaneous fat. If you can pinch an inch it’s a major health risk Bemmie Belly because belly fat also gets down deep and surrounds your vital Challenge! organs, like the liver, pancreas and

T

HIS year, Men’s Health Week 2017 starts on June 2, with a focus on belly fat. Why? Because it’s the type of fat that’s bad for your health, and men are more likely to have it. Muffin top, spare tyre, blubber, beer gut, belly fat, beer belly – a multitude of names but they all mean the same. It is, however, no laughing matter. This body shape is known as “apple-shaped’’. The problem isn’t just the way it looks on the beach. It could be a sign that your health is

intestines. Regardless of your overall weight, a large amount of belly fat increases your risk of: • Cardiovascular disease • Insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes • Colorectal cancer • Sleep apnea • Premature death from any cause • High blood pressure • Alzheimer’s disease. The main cause of this body shape is low physical activity and consuming a lot more calories in

meals and drinks than the body needs. Drinking too much alcohol increases belly fat because of the excess calories consumed and the additional strain it puts on the liver’s ability to process fat. The #bristolsugarsmart campaign is raising awareness of the risks and how to combat excess sugar consumption. A common but false myth is that spot exercises like sit-ups, crunches and abdominal exercises will get rid of fat around the stomach. It will strengthen the muscles, but it will take a lifestyle change to wave them away. At Bedminster Pharmacy, we can help you bust the belly fat in a healthy and effective way. We offer free Slimming World and Weight

Watchers vouchers. We can also screen for sleep apnea and take your blood pressure. Come in today for confidential and professional advice at no cost. We are aware that being overweight in this way can rob one of confidence and lead to a lot of isolation. The jokes may be funny but they can hurt too. Marvin Rees, Bristol’s mayor, is lending his personal support to our initiative. Take the Bemmie Belly Challenge and receive a goody bag! Men’s Health Week will not do a fat lot of good without your participation. • This column by Ade Williams of Bedminster Pharmacy aims to show how pharmacies can help with a range of conditions

Down on the Farm News from Windmill Hill City Farm, Philip Street, Bedminster

Nursery news AS YOU will have read elsewhere in the Voice [see page 8], Windmill Hill City Farm is considering an opportunity to increase its places for pre-school nursery children. If it goes ahead it will give an additional 32 places for 3-5 year-olds in an area that is desperately in need of more provision – and secure the financial future for the farm as a free community facility.

Tickling the keys Bristol-based artist Luke Jerram, who created such memorable installations as the Park Street water slide and the Museum of the Moon, is bringing his decorated street-pianos back to Bristol, and one of them will be at the city farm. Play Me I’m Yours Bristol 2017 celebrates 10 years of pianos installed in public spaces for anyone to play and enjoy. There’ll be a piano at the farm from August 17 to September 7. Farm Foods Farm-raised pork will be on sale in June. It always sells out quickly so keep an eye out for details on Facebook, the website, or visit the farm shop in the new café. Would you like to shop less in supermarkets, and avoid endless packaging? The farm has joined Bristol’s Real Economy

Tinkle town: A piano in North St Cooperative to offer you a great alternative. Just sign up on the website, place your order online, then collect your fruit, vegetables and other goods from the farm café. First delivery is July 1. Farm events Let’s Make Art – new weekly art and storytelling sessions for pre-school children and their grown-ups, themed around popular children’s books, with time to make things together, inspired by the story. Every

Tuesday, 10.30-11.30am in the farm café. £6. Woodworking Day - make your own hand-crafted woodland products and explore the ancient art of green woodworking in this one day workshop. Sunday June 11, 10am-4pm. £60. Open Mic – join a host of lovely local musicians in the brand new monthly open mic night in the brand new café! All styles and abilities welcome! Bar and snacks available. Starts Friday June 23, 6-10pm. Free entry. More information and event bookings via the website. Summer holidays at the farm It may seem a long way away, but the farm will have lots of great activities running throughout the summer holidays – including the Wild Outdoors Club. Details will be up on the website soon. • windmillhillcityfarm.org.uk

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RSPCA UPDATE

33 From Bristol Dogs & Cats Home

If you want your bunny to be happy, you need more than just a little hutch

J

UNE 17-25 is Rabbit Awareness Week, and we are using the week to highlight the importance of good and responsible rabbit ownership. Rabbits are now the fourth most popular pet in the UK, which is why it is so vital that we keep reinforcing the messages about appropriate welfare for our furry friends. Did you know that a wild rabbit’s territory is equivalent to around 30 tennis courts? That is why traditional small hutches are not appropriate. We recommend a minimum area of 10ft x 6ft x 3ft high (3m x 2m x 1m) for a pair of average sized rabbits. It is important that your rabbits have space to hop, jump and stretch! Around 80 per cent of your rabbit’s diet should consist of hay and fresh grass, with 10 per cent

There’s more to looking after rabbits than meets the eye, but we can offer help Rabbits need a varied diet – rabbit food alone is not enough; they need plenty of greens veggies, 5 per cent healthy pellets, and 5 per cent healthy treats. Constant access to clean water is also, of course, vital. Sadly many rabbits spend their entire lives living alone in a hutch. Rabbits have complex social needs and are at their happiest when paired with another friendly bunny; every bunny needs somebunny! Our small animal unit is the perfect place to begin your search for a new rabbit playmate. We can provide expert advice on rabbit

welfare and pairing suitable rabbits – just chat to us! Rabbits can be prone to some health conditions that are often difficult to spot: “Sometimes rabbits can hide pain and illness very well because they are prey animals. That is why good care and regular veterinary check-ups are so important to keep them healthy. Myxomatosis and VHD are two serious diseases that are preventable by vaccination,” explained Emily Maughan, an animal care assistant in the small

animal unit at the home. If you are interested in rehoming a rabbit or other small animal please visit our website, or call us on 0117 977 6043 for some advice.

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Winners: The Bedminster Down girls team are the county champions

Girls are 5-0 triple champs BEDMINSTER Down School’s girls’ football team brought home the County Cup after a 5-0 win. The team are Gloucestershire County Champions, having already won the Bristol and South Gloucester final. They dominated the final match on May 2 against Katharine Lady Berkeley’s School, Wotton-under-Edge. Most of the girls play competitive football outside school and are mainly students in their final year, with one from Year 7 and one from Year 10. PE teacher Claire Liddell said: “It’s been a fantastic five years of

football with this special team. They are a talented sporting group of young ladies and have become role models for other girls.” Year 11 striker Rhianna Ben-Carew scored a hattrick in the final game. She said: “I was really proud to represent Bedminster Down after the disappointment of an early exit from the National Cup.”  Goalkeeper Shawna Hannam (also in Year 11) added, “We’re leaving school soon so it’s been great to win just about everything going before we say goodbye!”

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n PLANNING APPLICATIONS 138 British Road BS3 3BZ Single storey rear extension to extend beyond the rear by 6.0m, of maximum height 3.4m with eaves of 3.0m. Refused 4 Rownham Close BS3 2JN Fell two eucalyptus, one fig and one magnolia tree. Granted Lounge, 227-231 North Street Bedminster BS3 1JJ Replacement of existing shopfronts. Installation of three illuminated fascia signs. Granted 45 Hebron Road BS3 3AE Hip to gable roof extension, enlarge dormer window in north elevation and new dormer window in south facing roof. Refused

Castlemead House, St John’s Road, Southville BS3 1AL Change of use from offices (Use class B1a) to residential accommodation (Use class C3). Pending consideration 65A North Street Bedminster BS3 1ES Retention of use of first floor flat (Use Class C3) to ancillary storage space for the ground floor bookshop and café. Pending consideration 18 Parson Street BS3 5PT Change of use of ground floor hot food takeaway (Use class A5) to a 2-bed self-contained flat (Use class C3). Granted subject to conditions

The Chessel Centre, Chessel Street BS3 3DN Details in relation to condition 5 (Further details) of permission 16/04853/X (Day nursery and community venue). Granted

46 South Liberty Lane BS3 2SY Variation of condition No. 12 (List of approved plans) for planning permission 17/00204/X: rear roof dormer and increased accommodation from two to three bedrooms. Pending consideration

3 Vauxhall Avenue BS3 1SU Extension to terrace to provide two flats (Use class C3). Granted subj. to conditions

1 & 3 Merrywood Road BS3 1DY Roof extension to 1 and 3 Merrywood Road. Pending consideration

Sainsbury, Winterstoke Road BS3 2NS Four replacement totem signs and four new panel signs. Granted subject to conditions

1 Dalston Road BS3 1QQ Single storey rear and side extension. Granted subject to conditions

7 Stella Grove BS3 2LT Erection of hip to gable and rear dormer window roof extensions. Insertion of obscure glazed first floor window and roof lights in front roof slope. Granted 13 Allington Road BS3 1PS Two storey rear extension, roof extension and annexe. Refused Lombard Service Station, Brook Road, Southville BS3 1AJ Demolition of vehicle repair/MOT garage building and erection of 3 x 3-bed two storey houses and two storey apartment building with two 2-bed flats. Withdrawn 39 Langton Park BS3 1EQ Two storey rear infill extension. Granted subject to conditions 16 Upper Perry Hill BS3 1NH Single storey rear extension. Granted subject to conditions

Ferodo House, Willway Street, Bedminster Change of use from offices (Use class B1a) to 14 units residential accommodation (Use class C3). Refused 132 Coronation Road BS3 1RE Basement and ground floor rear extension and new roof dormer. Granted subject to conditions

Bedminster, Ashton and Southville

reserved by condition 5 (Contamination) attached to permission 15/03837/X (as amended by 16/07012/X): Four 4-storey townhouses and a 4-storey block containing seven flats (Major application). Pending consideration 95 Ruby Street BS3 3DW Single storey rear extension. Pending consideration 215 North Street Bedminster BS3 1JH Change of use and first and second floor extension of the office/store to provide two 2-bed flats and one 2-bed maisonette. Pending consideration 32 Smyth Road BS3 2BU Rear and side single storey extension to provide wheelchair accessible bedroom and shower room. Hardstanding to front garden and extension of drop kerb for wider parking area. Pending consideration 86 Bedminster Parade BS3 4HN Details in relation to

condition 2 (Interior recording) of permission 17/01106/LA: Remove modern, demountable partitions from ground floor and remove modern ventilation system from banking hall. Granted subj. to conditions 21 King William Street BS3 1HH Single storey rear extension to extend beyond the rear by 4.6m, of maximum height 3.5m with eaves 2.6m high. Pending consideration 72 Bedminster Road BS3 5NP Two storey side and single storey front and rear extension. Granted subject to conditions 27 Greenbank Road, Southville BS3 1RJ Loft conversion with hip-to-gable conversion and rear dormer. Pending consideration • The status of these applications may have changed since we went to press. Check for updates at planningonline.bristol.gov.uk

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36

n YOUR COUNCILLORS

W

E HAVE met with officers a couple of times re residents parking over the last few weeks. Charlie Our request to Bolton extend the zone to Green selected streets Southville south of North Street (in the Southville ward) has been disallowed. There will either be a whole new zone, or no change. We have appealed because we disagree. A new zone is likely to take years to put in place, if it ever happens. The criteria for such a zone are unknown to us, but may be set to an extremely high bar. Given such a zone would mix terraces (where we think demand is higher) and houses with off-street parking, it is also likely to be highly controversial. We do hope there will be the opportunity to extend the hours of operation of the zone, subject to further consultation. An alternative might be a match day

Southville

parking scheme but we believe this is also likely to be some years away. There are numerous other smaller changes which have been requested. Some are contradictory, such as requests to both add and take away parking bays on the roads off North Street. There are also simpler more obvious requests which we do expect to be implemented. We will publish these when we can. Meanwhile, Steve Clarke and I have both objected to the idea of a licence for a take-away stall on North Street Green. Thanks are due Given that I am fairly happy to criticise the Labour Party for all sorts of things (such as parks, trees, libraries, implementing austerity), then it is only right and proper to thank them – in this case thanks to Paul Smith (cabinet housing supremo on the city council) for his help with an issue concerning a local family in BS3 who suddenly faced being forced out of the area. Cheers, Paul.

I

WAS writing this as details of the Manchester bombing started to come in and it really put all Stephen of our political Clarke posturing leading Green up to the General Southville Election into perspective. Rather like Jo Cox’s murder in 2016, it made me pause to think about what we are doing as councillors. Are we actually doing anything useful? As they used to say on the radio; “Answers please on a postcard ...” Seriously; email me and tell me what you think a councillor’s role should be, what we should be doing differently and how we can be more useful. • The General Election and the metro mayor election have stretched your local politicians’ resources to breaking point. They were two elections that didn’t need to happen. Naturally I was disappointed to see a Tory elected as metro mayor but I

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How to contact your councillor: p2 hope he can work with Marvin for the greater good of the area. • Parking is on the menu again; we are trying to agree the details of the RPS consultations in Bedminster East and Southville with officers. They seem amenable to small changes suggested by the community but less so to larger structural changes such as an expansion of the areas. We shall see. • Ashton Gate stadium. Talks are continuing to try and lever open the gates of the Ashton Gate Park & Ride. Readers with a long memory of my columns will remember that these 1,500 parking spaces sit empty or half used on a weekend matchday, while convoys of cars cruise Southville and Ashton looking for parking. When they can’t find anything they seem to just dump their cars wherever they can and run for it. Some of the photos sent to me of this parking are quite hair-raising. I still expect that progress will be made on this issue but your pressure on decision makers can help.

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n YOUR COUNCILLORS

W

E THOUGHT it would be useful to recap on some of the local rail projects and the prospects for making further progress. Mark is grateful for all the kind messages following his stepping down from the Bristol cabinet after the mayor decided to make changes to member roles. Rail remains a crucial part of efforts across the Greater Bristol area to provide alternatives to everyday car use. The new mayor for the West of England will lead on this work by identifying opportunities and funding. In the Bedminster area there are several projects. Parson Street has seen some of the largest increases in passenger numbers locally, but the station remains inaccessible to many people with mobility issues, pushchairs and heavy luggage. The steep staircase has been repaired, with better lighting and surfacing; yellow safety lines are now painted on platforms and more proposals are coming forward thanks to the Friends of

Mark Bradshaw Labour Bedminster

Bedminster

Celia Phipps Labour Bedminster

Parson Street Station. It is also good to see Bristol Sport making more use of the station for match days and the support of GWR and British Transport Police in this is very important.

T

his leads onto the need for a station at Ashton Gate. Despite setbacks with the earlier business case, hardly anyone disagrees with the need for a station. Celia and Mark fully support the Friends of Ashton Gate Station who campaign on the subject. The Bristol local rail study, which was held up by the mayor’s spending freeze, is now an opportunity to ensure that the

37 How to contact your councillor: p2

full economic case for Ashton Gate station is made, including matchday use, other visitor events and the growth in homes and employment nearby. The potential to create a muchneeded travel hub for this area is waiting to be realised, with the Long Ashton Park & Ride, South Bristol Link, Metrobus route and stops all in close proximity. The forthcoming planning application for the Alderman Moore’s site in Ashton Vale will show the outline for a future station. Getting rail projects completed is a massive challenge, whether major national schemes or local ones. The government decision to defer electrification of the mainline into Temple Meads, and the huge cost increase for the Portishead line from £58m to over £160m, are two examples. What is needed is a fundamental change in how Network Rail, train operators and the Department for Transport work with promotors (usually local councils). There are examples where this has been done, for

example near Exeter, where functional stations are being developed to meet local demand. The Portishead line would connect 30,000 people to the national rail network. It would also support the extra tracks and signal improvements elsewhere, including at Parson Street, and, of course, Ashton Gate station would be on this line too. The reasons for the greatly increased costs are varied, but they can be reduced and an expert group was set up by the then Joint Transport Board (at Mark’s request) to look at this. Meanwhile, service frequency improvements on the Severn Beach line and towards Bathampton, plus extra tracks at Parson Street, can go ahead (these were also part of Phase 1). This would make full use of the newer trains being reallocated to our area from the Thames Valley. The new metro mayor has a lot of scope to help get the rail investment we need, as the Bristol area has been underfunded for many years.

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n HISTORY Bristol’s most influential doctor It was a revelation The doctor who D that disease could be caused by tiny recognised the living organisms wriggling horrors that brought death to the Bristol slums R WILLIAM Budd was a man with a burning desire. Like many of the prominent Victorians who are buried in Arnos Vale cemetery, he had a zeal for his life’s work – which was principally to save as many lives in Bristol as he could. He worked so hard that he was reckoned to have shortened his own life by his effort – often running, it was said, from his home in Clifton to the Royal Infirmary because he was so anxious to see how his patients were doing. His talents were badly needed: it has been said that in the 1840s Bristol was the third most unhealthy town in England. In fact there’s some dispute about this – it turns out that Bristol was actually fourth on a selected list of 10 large towns, and its high death rate was achieved by excluding the healthy suburbs of Redland and Clifton from the figures. But that’s to trifle: in the city centre, Bristol was a mass of unhealthy tenements, where life was short and disease rampant. Budd was a key figure in helping to eliminate many of those diseases, not just in Bristol but across the world. Among many honours he received was a letter from the eminent doctors of New York congratulating him on his discoveries. The irony is that Budd did his best work, and saved probably thousands of lives, in Bristol. Yet if he hadn’t been the son of a country doctor, and had been forced back to his Devon village to practice there, he would not now be so famous.

W

illiam Budd was born in 1811 in North Tawton, Devon. His father was a doctor who taught his skills to his sons: seven of his 10 boys studied medicine. William spent four years studying in France, where doctors were trying to find the cause of diseases such as typhoid fever. There was an assumption that such diseases were connected with foul living conditions. But what connected the patients? One theory was that “foul air” was to blame. Pierre Louis, later to become know as the father of evidence based medicine, discovered inflammations on the small intestine. Budd remembered this: he was also impressed by a

New world: Dr Budd used the latest microscopes to reveal the true cause of cholera: a living, multiplying organism, seen for the first time country doctor, Brettenau, who found that the typhoid appeared to have travelled with several students who were sent home from a military school in Tours. Budd asked, what if foul air wasn’t to blame? What if the disease was passed from person to person, and there were unmistakeable physical signs that would identify the disease? Budd was to return to this idea. First he went to Edinburgh, where his studies earned him a

gold medal, and then to the naval hospital HMS Dreadnought, where he worked only briefly before himself succumbing to typhoid fever. He nearly died, but pulled through, and while recovering, returned home to work with his father. It was in Devon that he made his real breakthrough. Typhoid fever broke out in a village of 1,300 people. North Tawton was thought a healthy place, without tenements and

with clean air all around. But in July 1839, two girls developed typhoid fever. Within four months, more than 80 inhabitants had fallen ill. But what connected them? In a big city like Bristol there was little hope of a single doctor keeping tabs on all the victims, and trying to find out how they become infected. In the village, Budd and his family were the only medics, and Budd recorded every occurrence. “At first the people involved did not seem to have connections. However, the fourth case, a sawyer, removed to his home nine miles off as soon as he began to droop. Two days after his return home he was laid up with fever of which he died at the end of five weeks. Ten days after his death his two children were laid up and both had it severely. The widow remained well.” The personal connection between the victims was becoming clear. The case of another sawyer was “still more instructive,” Budd wrote. “A friend who visited this man when he was at his worst, and was called upon to assist him in the bed … was seized with rigour which was followed by typhoid fever. This person now became a new source of contagion. Before he was convalescent, two of his children were laid up with fever, and also a brother, living at some distance, but who had repeatedly visited him.” The case had its medical fascination for Budd. But such a fateful outbreak in his home village had personal effect too. In the introduction to his later book, Typoid Fever, he wrote: “At a time when cholera is destroying hundreds of our fellow creatures daily, and filling the land with mourning, it is the duty of every one who believes himself to be in the possession of any observations which throw the smallest light on the cause of, and the means of controlling, such an awful visitation, to give them, without delay, all the publicity possible.” With the help of other country doctors, he was to prove his case

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39

n HISTORY Bristol’s most influential doctor Dr William Budd: “How often have I seen in past days, in the single narrow chamber of the day labourer’s cottage, the father in the coffin, the mother in the sick bed in muttering delirium, and nothing to relieve the desolation of the children?”

that personal, intimate contact was responsible for the spread of typhoid. Dr William Cook, from Worcester, wrote in the Lancet how he had traced a small epidemic over a wide distance in the countryside. But it was in Bristol that Budd was to make his impression. He became a doctor at St Peter’s Hospital in 1842. (The hospital was then a pauper’s workhouse; it stood behind St Peter’s church in what is now Castle Park and was destroyed in the Blitz in 1940. St Peter’s Hospice was named after it.) In 1847, when Budd had moved to work at the Bristol Royal Infirmary, he was called to a patient with fever in Richmond Terrace, Clifton: the wealthy end of town, constructed so that the middle classes could move away from the foul airs of the harbour, which were in the summer a mass of stinking sewage. Budd found that 13 of the 34 households in Richmond Terrace were stricken by the fever. What did they have in common? One thing: a well. The other 21 homes had a different source of water. Evidence is a slippery thing in medicine, however, and the ground rules of evidence-based medicine had yet to be agreed. Theories were based on observations; and where there were many possible causes of a disease, as there often were in a city, there was disagreement

among doctors. There were the contagionists, who believed that typhoid was spread from person to person; and anticontagionists, who blamed “miasma” – the spread of disease through bad air or bad drains. The “immense majority” of country docors, Budd said, were “decided contagionists”. Most medics in large towns were miasmists. If the country doctors should be proved right, he wrote modestly, the credit must be given “not to superior insight on their part but to their possession of a better point of view.”

B

udd was soon to gain the influence to put his ideas into effect. The filth and degradation in Bristol were there for all to see. The city fathers had to be forced to confront it, but Budd and others gave evidence to a parliamentary commission. The opening of the Floating Harbour in 1809 had made matters worse: the tide no longer carried away the sewage. Working drains and clean water were essential for health, said Budd, and he became a founding director of the Bristol Waterworks Company in 1845. The water supply should be out of reach of any sewage, and under constant pressure, he insisted. Hence the reservoirs were built in the Dundry hills, and clean water started to flow – to some Bristolians at least. It was the work of decades to

turn the city around. An outbreak of cholera in Bristol in 1849 carried off 2,000 people. This was one out of every 70 people in a city of 140,000, killed by a single outbreak of one disease. Budd seized on the work of the Bristol Microscopical Society, founded in 1843, whose members observed a living organism in the faeces of cholera patients. The cause of cholera was a fungus, Budd stated, spread through contaminated water and air. He happened to be wrong: cholera is caused by a bacterium, not a fungus, and it’s spread only through water. But in an important way he was right: it was an advance to say that cholera was caused by a distinct living organism, not by a “miasma”. Science advances by such fits and starts. His work was read by John Simon, medical officer of health in the City of London. When cholera hit London in 1853, Simon had cleaned up the water supply; few in the City died. With typhoid fever, Budd was

on surer ground. The ulcers on the intestines were distinctive. Through the new microscopes, he peered at the distinctive “rice-water” stools of fever victims, identifying time and again what he believed were the same organisms. His ideas were still in conflict with those of the anticontagionists, but Bristol was gradually being made a more sanitary, less disease-ridden place. Budd was already sure that it was the organisms in faeces that helped to spread both cholera and typhoid. He gathered more evidence from the countryside. In Cowbridge, South Wales, eight people died of typhoid fever after visiting an inn in 1853. Not all the customers were affected: what united them was that all the victims had drunk lemonade. The drink had been made with water from a well which was close to the septic tank of the inn. A patient who was recovering from Continued on page 40

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n HISTORY Bristol’s most influential doctor Continued from page 39 typhoid had visited the pub shortly beforehand. Budd recommended all drinking water should be boiled, and encouraged the city to construct decent drains (a long job). He spoke endlessly about the importance of personal

BUDD AND THE HOMEOPATHISTS DR WILLIAM Budd was a stickler for evidence, and a key figure in developing controlled medical trials. Why, then, is he claimed as a fan of homeopathy? The website Sue Young Histories claims that Dr Budd was converted to homeopathy in 1860 after treating a patient who passed a stone almost an inch long from a gland under his tongue, after another doctor had given him a homeopathic remedy. Most medics through the ages have been sceptical of homeopathy, which claims that all kinds of illness can be treated by

hygiene, of washing hands and keeping one’s body clean – particularly for doctors and nurses. He also became one of the first advocates of disinfectants. Chlorine had been known as a bleach since the 1780s. As a gas, it is poisonous; but once passed an almost infinitesimal dilution of the substance that causes the disease. Numerous studies have found no evidence that it works, and its practice has now almost disappeared from the NHS (it was offered at South Bristol hospital until 2015). In this case, the homeopath seems to have misread the evidence. Dr Budd said of homeopathy in 1857 “of all the forms of quackery, none was so insidious, so miserable and wretched”. Even a sympathetic study of homeopathy in Bristol agrees that Dr Budd’s own account of the patient with a stone under his tongue was a ridicule of homeopathic treatment.

through lime it becomes usable. Budd said chloride of lime should be poured into privies and drains. Medical staff and orderlies – who were previously at great risk of being infected by their patients – could keep themselves safe by disinfecting their hands frequently. He recommended its use in the Crimea, where British soldiers died wholesale from cholera in the 1850s, but he was largely ignored. When government-appointed health officers began work in Bristol and elsewhere from 1865, however, these precautions became widespread.

E

ven when there was disagreement about how the diseases were spread – by foul air, or personal contamination – it sometimes didn’t matter, if all the hygienic precautions were being taken. Fatal outbreaks continued, but they allowed Budd to gather more evidence for his theories. In 1863, typhoid fever struck

the Convent of the Good Shepherd at Arno’s Court – the site of the current Arnos Court hotel. The convent was founded in 1851, intended to rescue young women from a life on the streets. In 1856 a reform school was added for Roman Catholic girls who had been imprisoned – sometimes from the age of nine. It’s possible that living conditions in the convent were not ideal. However, there had never been any typhoid there until a previous inmate returned in the summer of 1863, after several months in another town. Six weeks later, the first case of typhoid (or enteric fever) had occurred, and by the following March, more than 50 were infected, three had died, and two more, including the chaplain were close to death. Budd said the fact that there had never been fever in the convent before gave the lie to the opinion that it could be caused by bad drains. It must be contagious, he said. Budd had long been teaching

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n HISTORY Bristol’s most influential doctor THE HORROR OF THE FEVER From Dr Budd’s book, Typhoid Fever O ONE can know what they really imply who has not had experience of this fever in his own home. The dreary and painful night-watches – the great length of the period over which the anxiety is extended – the long suspense between hope and fear, and the large number of the cases in which hope is disappointed and the worst fear is at last realised, make up a sum of distress that is scarcely to be found in the history of any other acute disorder. Even in the highest class of

society, the introduction of this fever into the household is an event that generally long stands prominently out in the record of family afflictions. But if this be true of the mansions of the rich, who have every means of alleviation which wealth can command, how much more true must it be of the cottages of the poor, who have scant provision for the necessaries of life, and none for its great emergencies! Here, when Fever once enters, WANT soon follows, and CONTAGION is not slow to add its peculiar bitterness to the trial. As the disease is, by far, most fatal to persons in middle life, the mother or father, or both, are often the first to succumb, and the young

survivors being left without support, their home is broken up and their destitution becomes complete. How often have I seen in past days, in the single narrow chamber of the day labourer’s cottage, the father in the coffin, the mother in the sick bed in muttering delirium, and nothing to relieve the desolation of the children but the devotion of some poor neighbour who in too many cases paid the penalty of her kindness in becoming, herself, the victim of the same disorder!” From the fact, already referred to, of its being so much more deadly to grown-up persons, this disease has a relation to pauperism which is almost peculiar to itself.”

his ideas at the Bristol Medical School, where he had quite a reputation. He did not publish them until 1857, when he began a series of papers in The Lancet. In 1873 he published his life’s main work, Typhoid Fever: Its Nature, Mode Of Spreading, And Prevention. It was his final contribution: his health broke – some say he had a stroke – and he was forced to retire. He had given up his post at the infirmary in 1862, already overworked. He had married Caroline Hilton in Bath in 1847. They had nine children, and lived in Clifton and then Clevedon until his death in 1880, when the papers sang his praises. “No officer could ever serve an institution with more fidelity or more ability than did Dr Budd the Royal Infirmary,” said the Bristol

Mercury, in an obituary reprinted in many other newspapers. “When not actively engaged in the routine of his professional duties, he was generally found investigating some obscure problem in medical science,” the paper continued, adding that “we owe much of what is known” about cholera and similar diseases to Dr Budd. “The painstaking care with which he attended upon his patents, his great diagnostic skill, and his success in the treatment of disease won him high renown and a large practice.” By the time Budd died his battles of theory were largely won. The evidence spoke for itself. In the 1849 epidemic, cholera killed 2,000 people in Bristol. In 1854 another outbreak

killed 430. In 1866, after many reforms of hygiene, the death toll from the same disease was only 29. The toll of overcrowded and filthy living conditions still afflicted the working people of Bristol, however. The ways in which disease was transmitted were becoming understood; but the city, and its medical officer, were reluctant to use even the powers they had to tackle horrific overcrowding in the slums (in 1877, the death rate was worst in the ward of St Mary Redcliffe, where there were notorious courts, or tenements, off Redcross Street; twice as many people died here each year, per head of population, as in Clifton). Budd’s position in history was secure, however. His biography by Michael Dunnill, published in

“N

THE FEVER HOSPITALS – AND THE BRISTOL ARENA

ONE innovation which Dr Budd helped encourage may yet have an effect on our future. Special “fever hospitals” were used to isolate infectious patients. A temporary one was erected next to Stapleton workhouse in 1864. Eventually two small hospitals, one for fever (typhoid) and one for small pox, were built near Temple Meads, off Cattle Market Road near Totterdown Lock. One source says the council did not agree to build them until the 1880s – our map dates from about 1880 – but the buildings also appear, unlabelled, on a map of 1874. Either way, many people died at the hospitals, and it’s uncertain exactly where they are buried. This

The effect: Budd’s illustration of ulcers in the small intestine in the 11th day of typhoid fever 2007 by Redcliffe Press, was called William Budd: Bristol’s Most Famous Physician – a title that’s beyond dispute. Sources: • Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine, 2002 Nov; 95 (11): 561-564 • Int. Journal of Epidemiology, 2013 (42) 6: 1576-1577 • Public Health in Victorian Bristol, Peter Malpass & Michael Whitfield, ALHA (Avon Local History & Archeology) Books No 19, 2015 • Homeopathy in Bristol 1840-1925, Michael Whitfield, ALHA Books No 15, 2013 • sueyounghistories.com/ archives/2010/04/15/williambudd-1811-1880 • Typhoid Fever: Its Nature, Mode of Spreading, and Contagion, Dr William Budd, 1873

TOTTERDOWN LOCK

CATTLE MARKET ROAD

Tribute: A plaque on Budd’s former home at 89 Park Street is one of the factors being considered before the sale of what is now Arena Island, and the former Royal Mail sorting office, to the University of Bristol. Are there graves waiting to be discovered by the developers, and perhaps decontaminated? Time will tell.

THE HOSPITALS

THE NEW CUT

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The isolation hospitals: the upper for fever, the lower for smallpox

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n TAKE A BREAK

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The numbers point you to the letters on a phone keypad

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Down 2 363 (3) 3 7866279 (7) 4 254629 (6) 5 38653 (5) 7 6663 (4)

2 is A, B or C 3 is D, E or F 4 is G, H or I 5 is J, K, or L

6 is M, N or O 7 is P, Q, R or S 8 is T, U or V 9 is W, X, Y or Z

1

4

2

Each horizontal row, each 2x2 square and each column must contain all the numbers 1-4.

4 3

2

WORD STARS Four six letter words are split and scrambled into three different columns. Can you spot all four words? Answers above. But no peeking until you have tried really hard.

5

6

7

8

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3

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B A R N E T U A W K X E W C I T Y

WORD STARS

J A L B I O N L S O U T H E N D S

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Monkey, Rocket, Banana, Window

Can you find 46 football terms vertically, horizontally or diagonally?

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Across 1 Review, 4 Comedy, 6 Inform, 8 Allegory. Down 2 End, 3 Summary, 4 Climax, 5 Evoke, 7 Mood

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n WHAT’S ON

A little like Glastonbury, but without the mud THE Totterdown Music Festival is back with it’s biggest-ever line-up. Like last year, the stage will be in Oxford Street, outside the Oxford pub. Expect food stalls and a lively atmosphere from 2pm on Saturday June 9, continuing on Sunday June 10. There will be plenty of local participants in the Break Out Voices choir. Other past festival favourites appearing again include African Sambistas and Troy Ellis & The Hail Jamaica

Reggae Band, as well as Natty Dapps and The Dunbars. The line-up also includes The Houdinis, The Deltics, Crawlin Kingsnakes, Ilu Axe, Sensijam, The Bad Losers, Pigs Ear, Conor Hughes, The Itinerants, Dukes of Mumbai, Dappa Don and the Playaz, Mama Cabassa, Bristol Ukulele Club Band and Regime. There was no schedule at the time of going to press. More at • facebook.com: Totterdown Music Festival 2017

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Party time: Last year’s Totterdown Music Festival in Oxford Street

A perfect night of fabulous variety acts REVIEW A Night at the Cabaret, Redcatch community centre, Knowle HOSTED by Entertaining Local Knowle, the hall was transformed from a place for kids’ parties and exercise classes to a welcoming improv theatre, with long tables adorned with flickering tea lights. Himself states that women comedians are simply not funny. I was willing Angie Belcher, compere and finalist of Best Female Comedy Newcomer, to prove him wrong. And she delivered. Oh, she was slick. She was also very naughty and crude to the delight of the majority, including my friend who had to keep dabbing away the tears. One group sat with pursed lips but they were from a church so I will forgive them. El Diabolo wowed the crowd with tricks and flips, bouncing his fancy flashing diabolo daringly, until one of his sticks broke, making the act even funnier. He was followed by Bed of Nails Man (Fakir Darren), a

cheeky chappie who had us cringing, gasping and laughing. He somehow survived his performance and it was time to bring on Moaning Malcolm. I was a little bit worried; I hate a moaner. But oh he was good; a very clever comedy poet, his delivery and timing done to perfection. Destined for television for sure. El Diabolo then changed into Marky Jay, a death-defying knife juggler. His finale saw two members of the audience persuaded onto the stage. I hardly dared to look as Marky Jay clambered onto their uneven shoulders, nearly getting tangled up in the bunting and disappearing from view behind the pelmet. How he managed to juggle without killing someone was a miracle – I could see the organisers frantically checking their insurance.   A break for a bowl of delicious soup, then the night was finished off by songstress Ella Candela. Her first song was worryingly karaoke and she nearly lost her audience but she soon warmed up and had the crowd dancing madly. It was fabulous, a cheap night out within staggering distance of home. Perfect. The Wicked Witch

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n WHAT’S ON Thursday June 1 n Something Else Acta theatre, Gladstone Street, Bedminster. Deafinitely Theatre, the UK’s leading deaf theatre company, bring award-winning picture book Something Else to life, using British Sign Language and spoken English. A story for children aged 3+ and their families, both deaf and hearing, celebrating everyone's right to be different. 1pm and 3.30pm, £7. • acta-bristol.com n Biota Paintworks, Bath Road, Totterdown. Photography exhibition by Falmouth University students of marine and natural history. Until June 7, 9-5pm. Photos from Cornwall to Fiji, from the predators of the Pacific Ocean to Europe’s last wild primates and the wildlife of Chernobyl's exclusion zone. • play.paintworksbristol.co.uk n Sirens Tobacco Factory theatre, until June 3. Belgian theatre company Ontroerend Goed get to the core of what it is to be female. “Sirens starts as a concert: six vocalists screaming their lungs out. What follows is a barrage of images, dealing with role models, patterns of expectation, persisting inequalities, acquired rights, inner censorship and everyday abuse.” Age 18+ only. £16/£14. • tobaccofactorytheatres.com Friday June 2 n Sean Kelly: Sold Your Way Comedy Box at the Tobacco Factory. The ever-smiling, ever-shouting auctioneer, star of Storage Hunters, has led a crazy life and wants to tell you about it, from holding a secret military clearance sale to catching shoplifters in Italy. Bring an item to be auctioned in aid of Help for Heroes. £15.50, 7.45pm. • thecomedybox.co.uk n The Vibrators + PolkaDot-Socks + DJ Gaz Le Punk Thunderbolt, Bath Road, Totterdown. London punk pioneers The Vibrators formed in 1976 and have been touring hard for 40 years. 7.30-11.45pm, £7. • thethunderbolt.co.uk n Tops SouthBank Club, Dean Lane, Southville, 8pm. Montreal’s dream-pop band Tops launch their third album Sugar At The Gate. £8. • southbankclub.webs.com Saturday June 3 n Dan McKinnon Saltcellar Folk Club, Totterdown Baptist Church, entrance off Cemetery Road. Return visit of the warm-

A slice of real history that left me in tears

Acta’s acclaimed story from the Bristol home front of WW1 brings life to personal histories

REVIEW Gas Girls, Acta theatre, Bedminster I HAD no idea about the devastation caused by mustard gas, not only to British and German soldiers in the First World War, but to the women and men who made it. In Avonmouth, two factories employed 2,000 people making the gas (in fact it was a liquid, which becomes a vapour on explosion). Nearly 3,000 injuries were reported in six months, including blistering, burns and blindness, and seven deaths. Shell-filling at the National Filling Factory No. 23, Chittening site, was only done by women. There is something wonderful about hearing proper Bristol accents from the local cast members – and that doesn’t mean this is an amateurish production. They are not professional actors but their skills are clear – setting up characters and

back stories so that you quickly care about what happens. The roulette of war means you don’t know who will be affected or by what – but you know there will be an impact on them all. The likeable characters range from saucy to stern, godly to ordinary working class girls, all wanting to contribute to the war effort, or distract themselves from their own tragedies. Group pieces are interspersed with monologues, giving you extra insight into the stories of working men, doctors, managers, and, of course, the women themselves. The play is so well put together and full of feeling

that I left the theatre in tears, and full of respect for both the original women involved and the cast who played them with such care and dignity. This story is an important social history of hundreds of local women who suffered in extremes in their bid to make a difference. Hats off to Acta and all the cast and crew for creating this powerful, moving legacy. Beccy Golding • Following the Bristol-wide tour the play is touring the region a second time. You may still have time to see it on June 3 in Weston or June 6 in Lockleaze. • acta-bristol.com

hearted, warm-voiced Canadian singer-songwriter. £5, 7pm. • saltcellarfolk.org.uk n Alfie Brown: Stand Up For The Weekend Comedy Box at the Hen & Chicken, North Street, Southville. Alfie Brown’s firebrand style of comedy has been forged from years of pushing boundaries. Plus guests. £11, 7.45pm. • thecomedybox.co.uk Sunday June 4 n Leo James Tobacco Factory bar. Drawing influence from past and present musicians from both sides of the Atlantic, Leo has a passion for acoustic blues, slide guitar, bluegrass and folk. 8pm. Free. • Facebook: Tobacco Factory Monday June 5 n VPAG meeting Every month members of Victoria Park Action Group meet to discuss upcoming events, issues that have arisen and ongoing projects, like creating play areas, wildlife areas

and mending benches. Bowling Club, 7.30-9pm. • vpag.org.uk Tuesday June 6 n Dylan Thomas: Return Journey Tobacco Factory theatre. Heralded by critics worldwide as a “lyrical tour-deforce” (The Guardian), see Bob Kingdom bring Dylan Thomas’s last lecture tour to life in a performance originally directed by Anthony Hopkins. £14/£12; 8pm; 2pm matinée on Thursday. • tobaccofactorytheatres.com Wednesday June 7 n Otis Gibbs Zion Bristol, Bishopsworth Road, 7.3010.30pm. Otis Gibbs is a folk songwriter, storyteller, painter, photographer and planter of 7,176 trees. He once wrestled a bear and lost. He has been described as “the best unknown songwriter in music today.” £12/£10. • zionbristol.co.uk Friday June 9

n The Changing Face of Bristol Docks Knowle and Totterdown Local History Society, Redcatch community centre, Redcatch Road, Knowle, 7.30pm. A talk generated from the photographic collection of past chairman Doug Semple and former member Fred Searle, presented by Peter Read. Members £1.50, visitors £3. • knowleandtotterdownhistory. org.uk n After Hours Tour Arnos Vale cemetery, 7.30-9pm. A tour revealing the darker side of Arnos Vale at dusk, in an atmospheric exploration of tragic tales, folk customs and funeral etiquette of Victorian society. £9. • arnosvale.org.uk n Doreen Doreen Fiddlers Club, Willway Street, Bedminster. The city’s constant favourites at their regular South Bristol haunt. £10, 8pm-2am. • fiddlers.co.uk Continued overleaf

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n WHAT’S ON It’s a jig, Jim, but not as we know it

REVIEW Lord of the Dance: Dangerous Games Bristol Hippodrome IT’S twenty years since Michael Flatley released his fiendish Irish-dancing feet on to the world. This celebratory show is part of a global trek lasting several years, with 40 dancers and musicians in each show. There’s a classic plot of good and evil. A mythical version of Eire hosts a holographic flute-playing nymph who weaves the story together; a pair of smiling female fiddle-players play super jigs and reels while strutting across the stage; rainbow faeries perform soft-shoed Irish dance pieces with floaty skirts and incredible high kicks. Dance-off fight scenes occur between Mad Max soldiers (whose vest-ripping draws whoops from the audience) and sci-fi robots. It didn’t totally make sense but it didn’t matter – as a fun, energetic vehicle to bring these dancers and musicians together, it worked. A giant floor-to-ceiling digital screen showed spectacular scenes of a moon surface, rolling hills and rainbows, and devilish roaring fires. Sadly a technical hitch in the second half meant we lost the bottom section – though ironically that made it easier to see what the dancers were doing. My favourite bits were the big ensemble pieces, the whole cast coming together to deliver foot-stomping energetic rhythms in tight unison or caterpillar-ing from one end of the line to the other, in that straight-armed Irish dance style, beating out un-countable taps per second. At the end there’s even a cameo performance by Flatley himself. Skilful and charismatic, he’s lost none of his fancy footwork. Beccy Golding

Continued from page 45 Saturday June 10 n Never Too Old To Disco Charles Padfield Centre, Victoria Park Baptist Church, Sylvia Avenue. Second Saturday of the month. “Love to dance, want to dance but don't know where? Come and feel the disco beat once more and reconnect with the old tunes you know and love.” 10.45-11.45am, £7. Contact Zoe nevertoooldtodisco@gmail.com  n Stomping Story: The Queen’s Knickers Arnos Vale cemetery, 11-11.45am. This outdoors telling of a tonguein-cheek tale is penned by kids favourite Nicholas Allen. “Join us for a hilarious knicker hunt, then try to decide what knickers the Queen would wear if she visited Arnos Vale?” £5, for ages 3+; babies and toddlers go free with an older sibling. • arnosvale.org.uk Sunday June 11 n Jo Swan & the Hounds of Lounge Tobacco Factory bar. 8pm. Free. • Facebook: Tobacco Factory Monday June 12 n Stand Up For Refugees Comedy Box at the Redgrave Theatre (tickets from the Tobacco Factory). Star-Studded comedy night to raise money for the humanitarian crisis. The heaving line-up includes Gary Delaney, Josie Long, Angela Barnes, Jonny and the Baptists, Suzi Ruffell, Jen Brister, Kerry Godliman and others still to be confirmed. £20, age 14+, 8pm. • tobaccofactorytheatres.com Tuesday June 13 n Milk Poetry Tobacco Factory theatre. Recently picked as one of the UK’s Best Spoken Word Nights, Milk Poetry returns after a sell-out show in April. With World Slam Champion and full-time poet Harry Baker, British Nigerian poet Theresa Lola, winner of the 2017 Charles Causley Poetry Prize. Plus more. £14, age 14+, 7.30pm. • tobaccofactorytheatres.com Wednesday June 14 n Down Our Road Acta theatre, Gladstone Street, Bedminster. “Loneliness, rivalries, pranks and parties – it all happens down our road!” A poignant and humorous look at life in Lockleaze, devised and performed by its residents. 7pm, £2. Also on June 15. • acta-bristol.com n Infinity Pool and Eurohouse Tobacco Factory theatre. Two shows in one

night for £15 (or £10 each). In Eurohouse, two performers – one Greek, one French – dance and shout, cry and sing, agree and disagree in a darkly comic look at the EU’s founding ideals and what got lost along the way. Infinity Pool is a retelling of Flaubert’s Madame Bovary by Bea Roberts. “A tender comedy like no other, using projectors, party rings and PowerPoint.” 7.30pm and 9pm. • tobaccofactorytheatres.com Saturday June 17 n Picnic in the Park Victoria Park Action Group (VPAG) is inviting the community to bring a picnic to the park as part of The Great Get Together in memory of Jo Cox MP, murdered one year ago. 12noon, all are welcome. • vpag.org.uk n The Charity Acoustic Event Totterdown Methodist Church, 12noon-4pm. Musicians include Dan Milton, Jake Ryall, Tia Psihogios, Olly Impossible. Proceeds to The New Home from Home Appeal at Bristol Children's Hospital and church funds. £6 on door or call 07977 437620. Sunday June 18 n The Great Get Together Park Street, Totterdown. Totterdown’s “Big Lunch”, renamed this year in honour of Jo Cox MP, murdered one year ago. Activities including turnip rolling, music and food, in the street, the community space and the community orchard. 1-4pm. • tresa.org.uk

n Pocket Opera Arnos Vale cemetery. Pat Leighton, Martin Le Poidevin and Helen Roberts, local singers with a wealth of experience, will perform songs by a variety of composers based on the words of Shakespeare, plus Mozart’s Pocket Opera. Tickets £10; 3.30pm-5pm. • arnosvale.org.uk Friday June 23 n 13 Tobacco Factory theatre. Graduating students from Bristol Old Vic Theatre School stage Mike Bartlett’s powerful, profound and epic play, 13, in which 12 strangers wake up from an identical, terrifying dream, full of monsters, explosions and thousands of voices. Enter John,

a Christ-like figure … £15/£10, 7.30pm, age 14+. • tobaccofactorytheatres.com n The Watts + Super D Thunderbolt, Bath Road, Totterdown. The Watts are Nicki Jones’s indie rock covers band, from Blondie to Primal Scream and AC/DC. Super D performs songs from Coldplay, The Killers, Blink 182, Nirvana. 7.3011.30pm, £5. • thethunderbolt.co.uk n Richard Dawson Fiddlers Club, Willway Street, Bedminster. The fiery folk maestro brings a full band including violinist Angharad Davies. With Glaswegian deregulated guitar pop group Still House Plants and DJ Fielding Hope. £15 in advance. • fiddlers.co.uk Saturday June 24 n Marie Curie Blooming Tea Party United Reformed Church, West Street, Bedminster, 1.303.30pm. Plenty of cups of tea and yummy cakes for sale. Raffle with lovely prizes. n Carnival Paintworks, Bath Road, Totterdown. Annual art festival by Milestones Trust, which works with disadvantaged people, featuring art from paintings to pottery and from food to films. With music and food. 10am-4pm until June 27. • play.paintworksbristol.co.uk n Nuttyness The Tunnels, Temple Meads. Nuttyness have been acclaimed as the finest tribute to British hit band Madness. 7.30pm, £8. • thetunnelsbristol.co.uk Thursday June 29 n An Evening With Sam Baker The Tunnels, Temple Meads. Sam Baker is one of the finest songwriters to emerge from Texas, the home of great songwriters. 7.30pm, £16. • thetunnelsbristol.co.uk

Friday June 30 n John Otway (postponed from June 9) Thunderbolt, Bath Road, Totterdown. Since his 1977 hit Really Free, a heady mix of blind ambition and rank incompetence has kept microstar Otway shining despite his ability to turn any situation to his own disadvantage. 7.30-11.30pm, £11. • thethunderbolt.co.uk

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