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Seamen’s friend returns to Hotwells

The refurbished statue of Samuel Plimsoll that used to stand near the Entrance Lock was finally unveiled with a new commemorative plaque on March 12th by The Lord Mayor at a new site on Capricorn Quay near the Jacobs Wells roundabout.
Although Samuel Plimsoll spent only his first 3 years in Bristol, his stubborn fight to improve the safety of ships at sea and save many of their crews from death had a direct effect on Bristol and no doubt many in Hotwells. His book ‘Our Seamen’ published in 1873, claimed that nearly 1,000 sailors a year on British ships were drowned and hundreds more were being imprisoned for refusing to sail on unseaworthy or undermanned vessels. From the time of his elec- Pauline Barnes, Lord Mayor Chris Davies, Dr. Mark Horton of Bristol tion as MP for Derby in University and Cllr. Barbara Janke fend off the press and the rain at 1868 Plimsoll lobbied dog- the unveiling ceremony. gedly for new legislation to address the problem. He experienced many setbacks as he confronted the powerful interests of shipowners and the political establishment but finally achieved Government support for an amendment to the Merchant Shipping Act in 1876. This introduced a compulsory mark on all British-registered vessels that came to be known as the ‘Plimsoll Line’. After various attempts to commemorate Plimsoll failed in Bristol, a bust from the City Museum was finally sited on Hotwell Road near the entrance to Cumberland Basin and unveiled by Lord Mayor L.K. Stevenson in 1962. There it might be standing still but for necessary works by Wessex Water to improve water quality in the Floating Harbour which meant the sculpture had to be removed into temporary storage in 2005. The Community Links group in particular, led by Pauline Barnes, with support from the Lord Mayor, campaigned to ensure the statue returned to Hotwells. Now, with financial help from Wessex Water, Clifton & Hotwells Improvement Society and Bristol City Council, we are delighted to see the great man, spruced up and returned to enhance the new Harbourside Walkway. We have produced a special Plimsoll commemoration edition of Hotwells News to mark the event. You can download this from



New mural coming soon to Hotwells School
Here’s part of the design of a fantastic new mural, devised by artist Andy Council with help from the children at the school. More details on page 2….

Published by Hotwells & Cliftonwood Community Association, 3,Charles Place,

Hotwells, Bristol, BS8 4QW



Community News
Focus on the Environment
Our Spring edition has a green feel about it and you will find a number of articles offering practical ideas to help with improving your environmental credentials. Our contribution has been to ensure that Hotwells News, for the first time, is printed on recycled paper, assisted by our printers Presstoprint in Baldwin St. who have offered us this option at no extra cost. We hope we can maintain this for future editions.

Goldney Crossing
The Council has come up with a proposal to build out the pavement across Goldney Hill adjacent to Goldney House and create what they call an ‘informal crossing’ as part of the Safe Routes to Schools programme. It should benefit children en route to both Christ Church and Hotwells primaries at a dangerous corner that has been a focus for residents’ complaints for some time. The costs of traditional marked crossings and the time needed to arrange the necessary traffic orders have made this style of unmarked crossing fashionable of late (something similar has been proposed for the crossing of Cumberland Basin Road in Hotwells). The extra pavement and better

Thanks for helping HCCA We thought it long overdue to offer a free plug to local traders who have been helping your Community Association. First is The Merchants Arms. whose charity box on the bar has collected over £80 for us in change so far. Try ‘The Merch.’ one of Hotwells cosiest and most convivial little pubs –and think of us when you buy a drink. Next is Phil at Quadgem who has been tending our computers, supplying replacement parts and keeping our IT kit running smoothly but so far neglected to send in a bill. You too can get reliable, local computer support by ringing 0117 9804355 or (unless it’s your broadband that needs fixing) email To keep up to date with Hotwells news as it happens rather than wait for the next printed ‘Hotwells News’ visit our website. Let us know about any local events and news that you would like to see online.

Hotwells Traffic Strategy
A number of minor amendments to the strategic plan for improving the roads and pedestrian safety in Hotwells, which was drafted by Richard Walker and Paul Walker-Jones, have now been agreed by the HCCA Trustees as a result of the consultation with local people. Of 110 responses, 62% fully endorsed the proposals, 23% offered partial or conditional support and 8% did not agree with the plan, 6% did not indicate a definite view one way or the other. However by adopting three changes to the draft proposals, the overall approval rating rises to 88%. These are: a) not to close the exit from the bottom of Hope Chapel Hill onto Hotwell Road. b) Drop the illustrative design for a building on the south side of Cumberland Basin. c) Devise a better exit from Rownham Mead onto Hotwell Road to make it easier and safer to use. We are grateful to everyone who took the trouble to participate in this exercise. The document is now being revised and will be used as the basis for ongoing negotiations with officers and councillors whenever road and traffic issues in Hotwells arise. The strategic framework it gives us has already proved useful in discussions concerning road improvements for the new Festival Way cycle path (see report on page 3).
Ray Smith

sightlines will be very welcome to mothers struggling with prams and toddlers as well as some older residents who may not be as nimble and alert as they once were!

Hotwells School Mural project
Hotwells Primary School is getting artistic input Council-style this spring, when the large wall in the playground will be decorated with a beautiful Hotwells-inspired mural. This isn’t a top-down, local authority approach however, but will come via wellregarded local artist, Andy Council. Andy exhibited as part of the ‘Crimes of Passion’ show at the RWA last year and his work is already on display on the side of the Grain Barge. It’s been a real collaborative effort and the children’s enthusiasm very much comes out in the design. Two undercoats have been applied to the wall already and Andy's due to start work very soon. Everyone at the school agrees that the design is fantastic and there is no doubt that it will fast become a Hotwells landmark. It is hoped that there will be an official opening event for the school and community. Check the wall itself, or the school website for progress:
Jayne Marshall

Hotwells & Cliftonwood Community Association 3 Charles Place, Hotwells, Bristol, BS8 4QW

tel: 0117 9291883

Residents Parking Zone
Cliftonwood residents have voted conclusively on the proposed scheme (57% against / 38% for) but on a surprisingly low vote given the extent of the advance publicity and strength of feelings expressed by some residents (457 responses out of 1820 households balloted). As a result, the Council Cabinet finally took the decision to scrap the plan on March 25th.

Management Committee
Dennis Gornall (Chair) Personnel Brenda McLennan (Treasurer) Projects Rosemary Stibbon Administrator Ray Smith Communications Mike Timmins Open spaces James Smith CHASE Anthea Bruges Community Links


Community News
Festival Way path takes shape
Dowry Parade and Albemarle Row where the limitations of 18th century architecture conflict with the needs of a 21st century throwaway society. Here’s a sample of some of the correspondence we have received: “Dowry Parade must be the worst in the area. Wheelie-bins, recycling boxes and even kitchen waste containers are a permanent eyesore. Many householders won’t wait until collection day so there’s always a lot of cans, bottles paper and even cardboard. The wheelie bins we have to put up with, as internal storage is not possible in these houses. But, they could be situated in a far less unsightly way…” And from a resident in Albemarle Row: “The bins obscure the ‘protected’ façade of these William Paty (designed) houses, especially Nathaniel Arthur’s original railings and disrupt pedestrian traffic around Hotwells Primary School the ever slobbish inhabitants of no. ** just use the whole area as a garbage dump….” It seems clear that any solution needs to be a p art nersh ip between residents and the Council but perhaps we need some new ideas to motivate people to try a little harder?
Ray Smith


The section of Sustrans Connect2 cycle path from the Ashton Swing Bridge to Clanage Road is well-advanced and a new shared path along the side of Cumberland Basin Road from the entrance lock to the Pump House has also appeared. The difficulty of creating a ‘bike-friendly’ crossing of Cumberland Basin, however, is still not resolved (see Winter 2010 edition of Hotwells News). Local representatives on the Festival Way ‘Cumberland Basin Steering Group’ made a case for closing Junction Lock Bridge to cars, except when Plimsoll Bridge needs to swing. This was investigated and ruled-out by the traffic team after running the proposal through their computer model which indicated negative knock-on effects for traffic flows in other parts of the City at peak times. The two remaining options still under investigation are widening the footway over the Junction Lock Bridge (by the Pumphouse) or reinstating the Brunel Swivel Bridge at Entrance Lock. Neither option will be cheap. Money has now been allocated to lift the Swivel Bridge for a full engineering survey that should enable a more precise cost to be quoted for its reinstatement. Whatever the outcome for Festival Way, this is good news for the Swivel Bridge Restoration Group and others who would love to see this heritage structure returned to working order. One of the main problems with progressing the project has been the uncertainties with regard to cost. A report on which of the two options is most feasible is now expected towards the end of May.

Cumberland ‘Piazza’ As promised in the last Hotwells News we have set up a steering group to work on some of the ideas that people voted for. An early decision has been that we need a big summer event to draw attention to the site and get more people thinking about a longer term future for the space. This could involve ‘mapping out’ some of the floorplans of buildings that were lost when the flyover was built, and almost certainly some music, food and drink in conjunction with the Rose of Denmark. If you have ideas about this and would like to get involved then please e-mail the HCCA office admin@hotwellscliftonwood. Using a mobile phone whilst driving Nick Shaw, our local police beat manager says that offenders don’t have to be stopped by a policeman to be prosecuted for talking or texting with a handheld phone: “To be prosecuted for these offences somebody must have witnessed it taking place. Not just a Police Officer but anybody who is prepared to make a statement. It is not uncommon for somebody who has been using their phone whilst driving to receive a letter through the post summonsing them to court although they have not actually been stopped by the Police“. If you see this you can make a time, place and no. and contact fine is £60 + points. happening, note of the registration Nick. The 3 licence

Fred Wedlock
We were all sorry to hear that Fred Wedlock had died. Fred, the 'Oldest swinger in Town' married a Hotwells girl - Sue Wiltshire of Camden Terrace at the bottom of Clifton Vale. Sue's dad was Percy Wiltshire a well known optician in Clifton. The couple were unable to get a mortgage on a house in Hotwells in the 60s as the area was so run down. Fred supported the three community plays produced at Hope Centre in the late 1990s and came to each one with the family. He loved the Harry Brown, the sand-dredger which was such a familiar sight locally until it took its last voyage to the Middle East where it was subsequently scuttled. He also owned the only remaining bottle of Hotwells Spa Water. Fred was a really nice chap - ask anyone who knew him!

More on rubbish
This subject is obviously becoming a major irritation for many people, especially in streets of multi-occupation houses like


The bottle message from the Council

We’ve seen the film, ‘Message in the Waves’ made locally and screened by the Hotwells & Cliftonwood Transition Group. We’ve been shocked by the pictures of dead birds and heaps of discarded plastic in the Pacific Ocean. Waste plastic pollutes the whole planet, even Hotwells, and to stop it we must change attitudes to plastic right here, right now.
A plastic bottle is a remarkable thing - the perfect vessel for storing liquids. Light but durable - you’d think if you had one, you’d want to keep it forever. But every year in Britain we throw away 13 billion. The problem is that plastic is cheap. It’s easier to buy a new bottle, rather than go to the trouble of cleaning and refilling an old one. And the same applies to bags, toys, flower pots, any plastics - when we can’t find a use for old plastic, it becomes valueless and we throw it away. And that’s where plastic’s great qualities become catastrophic. All the plastic bottles ever made are still at large somewhere on our planet. 20 % are now recycled, but the rest are drifting around – some blowing around the Bristol Harbourside and floating in the Avon. Waste plastic is both an eyesore and a threat to wildlife. Animals get entangled in plastic or sometimes eat it by mistake. Plastic can absorb water borne toxins and once these are in the food chain, they may ultimately end up on our plates. Over time, the forces of nature will grind waste plastic into tiny pieces, joining the microscopic spawn of other plastics in a fine - grained strata that is right now covering every inch of the earth and will one day come to define our era. Apparently, a bacterium has been discovered that can slowly eat plastic, so there is some hope. But most experts agree that a plastic bottle is not even just for life - more like four or five hundred years. The message on the bottle should read “don’t buy me unless you mean to look after me for a very long time and possibly pass me down to your great, great, great etc. grandchildren”. Thanks to Andrew Murray, Lavinia Ferguson, Lynda Stahl & Emma Peddie

Home collection black boxes do not accept ANY plastics for recycling because of lack of space on existing black box vehicles. Pilot studies for doorstep plastics collection will be undertaken in 2011 in some areas. (Most likely not ours at this point). Plastic recycling banks in Bristol currently take ALL plastic bottles and bottle tops. For details of the different types of plastics, and plastic bank recycling centres near us see At the moment, Bristol’s plastic banks do NOT accept any other plastic but from late April they will accept plastic packaging. Meanwhile the two Household Waste Recycling Centres do have additional plastic bins for "hard and rigid plastics". Bristol’s recycled plastics are taken by road to Gloucestershire for baling. They are then sold on to UK outlets to be sorted and pelletized into the various types and then sold on the open market. HDPE and PET plastic are recycled into new bottles and other plastics are used in the fibre industry

Useful websites for further information: Information about different plastics and recycling - did you know that it takes 25 plastic bottles to make one fleece garment? (Bristol) and (Modbury) for details of two successful campaigns to cut down on plastic shopping bags, and more. And for the very keen… will give you instructions for making your very own recycling plant! You could make anything from shoes to beauty aids.

The large tidal flows in the River Avon and its connection to the Severn Estuary mean that large volumes of litter can float upstream and collect on the Avon’s banks. An innovative clean up project is planned by Angus Tillotson, a south Bristol conservation contractor, who wants to set up a not-for-profit company to tackle this floating litter problem. For further info, contact Angus Tillotson at The New Cut, which flows from Totterdown to the Cumberland Basin, is one local waterway where plastic litter is already being cleaned up. This channel used to be a dumping ground for all sorts of rubbish, but thanks to the Friends of the Avon New Cut (FrANC), the channel’s banks are now looking much tidier. FrANC organises litter picking sessions several times a year, but avoids spring so as not to disturb nesting birds. To help out, call John Purkiss on 0117 966 5462 or email him c/o The Southville Centre on


Life before plastic
Hotwells Primary School children recently met local residents Sue Stops, Lesley Patterson and Don Egginton, to hear what life was like before plastic. Sue brought in her family’s historic Christmas decorations made from Bakelite, an early resin based pre-cursor to plastic (see photos).

tles and collecting used plastic bags in bag carriers to re-use them. If you are given a plastic bag in a supermarket, refuse it and buy a re-usable bag instead.” The overall message is plastic is increasingly causing damage to our environment and wildlife and its production is using up too much of our precious fossil fuels. Plastic is a precious resource, don’t squander it!

Bag II Bag
Maria Viana has a great way to recycle plastic bags. She tears them into strips and then knits or crochets these into new bags and baskets. They’re bright, colourful, lightweight and washable. To buy, call Maria on 07951 772 101.

Patrick Bate and Isobel Triggs write: “Before plastic, most clothes were made from wool, cotton, silk and leather which were cheap materials in those days. When plastic was first invented it was expensive but nowadays it’s cheap and most clothes are made from a cotton and polyester blend. Polyester is a fabric containing plastic fibres. In sport, footballs used to be made out of leather not plastic so when they got wet they were super heavy and if you got hit in the head it would hurt.” Freya Gray-Stone and Campbell Buckeridge discussed with Lesley the threats which plastics pose to wildlife: “Plastic is really bad for the environment because it lasts hundreds of years. If we do not recycle as much plastic as possible we could be living in a world of plastic. If we leave too much plastic lying around it gets washed down the drains and into the sea were birds hunt and ends up in their stomachs. As a result we are near to losing lots of rare birds, eg the albatross. If we do not reduce the amount of plastic we use, lots of animals, birds and reptiles will be lost to the world altogether.” Don, Finley Tonge and Daniel Southwell talked about how to stop plastic pollution: “There are thousands of plastic products in the world, most of them littering the streets, rivers and oceans of this world. But you can change this; just little things like using paper bags instead of plastic ones, re-using your plastic bot-

5 ways to cut your own use of plastic:
1. Take your own shopping bags 2. Buy unpackaged items, e.g. loose fruit and veg and take your own (paper) bags to put them in. 3. Refill and re-use plastic bottles – not only for drinking water. Make a mini slug proof greenhouse for young plants by cutting a large bottle in half, adding ventilation holes and pushing well into the soil 4. Get your milk delivered in glass bottles and recycle the empties in the old fashioned way! 5. Takeaways: avoid polystyrene trays & plastic bags. Fish & chips might even taste better out of newspaper, as the ‘Ideal’ chippie in Hotwells sells them. The Clifton ‘Thali’ sells re-usable metal take-away containers. Why not ask the takeaway providers if you can bring your own dishes!

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5 Britannia Buildings Merchants Road Hotwells Bristol BS8 4QD

Tel: (0117) 9290578 Fax: 9144316


Green Hotwells & Cliftonwood
Installing solar pv in Cliftonwood
We have a rear roof slope which faces SSE and which gets a lot of sun all year round. We had already insulated, secondary glazed, draught proofed etc as much as we could. The planning regulations changed recently and I believe that, for houses within a conservation area, panels are permitted development on roofs. Panels on listed buildings or on some walls within conservation areas will probably still need planning permission/listed building consent. We had quotes from 3 different installers and they were all remarkably close in price (£12–13000 depending on the type of panel) and so we decided to go with the most local company. We were able to get a grant from the Low Carbon Buildings Programme. Now these have ended I expect prices may become cheaper, depending on demand. We have 10 Sanyo hybrid modules (2.1kWp) which cover a roof area of about 4m by 3m and are predicted to produce around 1890kWh pa, approximately half our current electricity usage. In addition to the panels there is an inverter installed in the loft which converts the DC output from the panels to AC, a total generation meter and an export meter which are adjacent to the existing consumer unit. There is a certain amount of extra cabling which needs to be put in, but the installers were quite creative and were able to route the wiring without much intrusion. The feed-in tariff (through your electricity company) from April 2010 will pay 41.3p for every kWh generated for 25 years - index linked and tax free, a guaranteed minimum of an additional 3p per unit that you export to the grid and of course savings on not having to import all your electricity. (The electricity you produce is always used on site first if there is any demand). I would say that none of the installation companies seemed particularly hot on shading issues. Shading, even on only a very small area, can significantly affect output so you should record any shading problems at different times of day/year (photographs are easiest) to make sure that the panels are located in the best position.
Rebecca Gunson

CREATE now opening on Saturdays
Welcome news is that CREATE Centre is planning to open every Saturday starting Sat 17th April, You will be able to visit the Ecohome and exhibitions, eat in the café and take part in a variety of family friendly activities from carnival bike decoration to herbal walks and travel talks. CREATE is keen to gather ideas for events with an environmental or community focus. If you have any suggestions for activities either run by the community or others please email:; Home Energy event at Create Cutting your carbon through Energy Efficiency makes sense for the planet and your pocket. Energy costs are set to rise year on year so any efficiency measures you can take make sense for your household bills. Checking out your home is not difficult and simple measures can pay back huge dividends. The City Council sustainability team, based at the Create Centre is offering a free opportunity for you to find out where the energy weak spots are in your home and learn how to monitor your energy usage. One of Create’s first Saturday events ‘Home energy audit training’ takes place on Saturday 24th April. You will learn an easy way to audit your home to identify energy saving measures and find out how to use an OWL Electricity Monitor to measure your electricity usage. These will be available to borrow to help with your energy efficiency.
The sessions will last for an hour and will include a demonstration of how to use an OWL Energy Monitor. There will be a session starting at 11.00am and another at 2.00 pm. You can book a place with the Create Reception by calling in, phoning on 925 0505 or email

Meet the Author event at Create On Saturday April 24th, children’s author and illustrator, Philippa Drakeford will be reading from ‘Doorway through the Oak’ (8-12 years) to mark the launch of Create’s new stock of inspiring eco-titles and inviting books for young and older readers (reference only).


Events Diary
To submit entries to go in the diary please e-mail:

Thurs Apr 15th Sat April 24th Sun Apr 25th Sun May 9th Sun May 16th May 29th30th Thurs May 19:00 20th June 12th13th July 2nd4th 30th JulyAug 1st 10:0016:00 10:0016:00 19:30 FrANC Meeting
presentation on plans for a ‘Ballast Seed Garden’ at Cumberland Basin

Southville Centre
Beauley Road Bristol BS3 1QG

Create Centre—home energy audit training Clifton Rocks Railway open day Bristol 10K run Clifton Rocks Railway open day Bristol Eco Veggie Fair Friends of Avon New Cut— Wildflower Walk Race for Life Bristol Food & Wine Fair Bristol Harbour Festival

B Bond, Smeaton Road, Bristol

Sion Hill (no children under 14) Harbourside (look for road closures) Sion Hill (no children under 14) Harbourside Vauxhall Bridge (Coronation Rd. end) The Downs Waterfront / Amphitheatre Harbourside
If you want to get involved in volunteering Tel: 0845 456 7000 or visit http://

Hotwells Panto 2010—Jack and the Beanstalk
Just think, if you weren’t one of the 560 people who came to this year’s Panto at Hope Chapel in March, you’ll never know why it featured women dressed up as carrots, or men as thong-wearing pork butchers or even children playing meatballs in a pot of spaghetti. Suffice to say that the disturbed imaginations of our team of writers did not prevent everyone having a jolly good time and raising over £3,000 for the Hotwells Community Chest and over £600 bar profits for the Community Association. Thanks also to Hope Community Church for putting up with the mess and disruption and noise and bizarreness of it all.

Hotwells Pine
EST. 1985

Quality Antique Pine Furniture

Tel: 0800 0850604
Free local delivery 253 Hotwell Road, BS8 4SF

Last year’s panto audience was transfixed by the mesmerising 0117 973 production. Could it be your turn this year?

off-road parking available at rear of shop


Enjoy a great place to live and work! - Buy locally for service and convenience

Alison Archibald & Associates
Registered with the British Chiropractic Association & the General Chiropractic Council
back and leg pain sports injuries neck shoulder and arm pain postural advice headaches free chiro checks ergonomic products available Perrin technique also available MEDICAL INSURANCE APPROVED

Tel: 0117 929 8384
3 Dowry Place, Hotwells, Bristol BS8 4QL (also at Taunton 01823 412489)



Open for Dinner Fri & Sat evenings all year round

NIC EIC REGISTERED T: 0117 927 3541 07799 252451

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39 Oldfield Road Hotwells BRISTOL BS8 4QQ 8 Tel: (0117) 927 2100