The Twentieth Century Society

Campaigning for outstanding buildings


Bristol event: Ship-shape and 20th-century fashion

A walking tour of Bristol city centre
Date: Saturday 27 February 2016

It has been said that if you want to see modern architecture, don’t come to Bristol. And for sure, the city contains some pretty poor examples of 20th-century design. These arguably include some drab city centre tower blocks, the depressing Broadmead shopping centre and the invasive inner ring road. Not to mention the filling-in of the part of the harbour which once stretched right into the centre, and the lack of vision not to re-open this to mark the Millennium.

However, 20th-century buildings also contribute to the city’s undeniable beauty. The landmark Neo Gothic Wills Memorial Building towering over Park Street, the Arts and Crafts Central Library, the Art Nouveau Edward Everard Printing Works (Grade II* listed), and the futuristic Electricity House are just a handful of buildings which contribute to the city’s incredible variety. More recent additions range from Pero’s Bridge and the copper clad extension to the Grade II-listed Colston Hall, to the contribution made by celebrated artists such as Banksy.

This visit by the C20 West group comprises a walking tour of the city centre led by local architect Jack Konynenburg to look at, and discuss, examples of 20th-century design. Looking at the beautiful, the polite, the insipid and the ugly, the tour is more a reflection and discussion than a talk.

The walk is a distance of about one and a half miles and lasts about two hours.
From 10.30am – Meet at the café in the Bristol Guild in Park Street for preliminary refreshments.
11.00am – Start of tour.
1.00pm – Terminate also at the Bristol Guild. Afterwards there will be the opportunity to visit the adjacent gallery, housing the excellent Ken Stradling collection.
Parking is recommended at the Trenchard Street car park

There is no charge for this event. If you are interested in joining us on 27 February, please contact Jack Konynenburg for more details.

Bob Hardcastle