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It’s really happening!

The playpark you chose will be installed this summer


this design by Sutcliffe Play was a clear leader in the consultation for a new park

With a budget of £43,000, five companies were asked to to come up with designs for the refurbishment of Charles Place play park. Some members of our park support group and Cllr. Trevor Blythe looked at the designs and shortlisted two of these. A further public consultation, led by Deborah White for the City Council produced a clear winner. This design offers a wide range of play options for both pre-school and primary age children. The existing gates and fencing will be replaced and the planting will be improved and all the equipment and the surfacing will be new. As well as BCC play officer John Knowlson and project manager Vicki Abel who have patiently steered us through the process, thanks are due to Cllr Blythe for submitting our application for capital funding and to the Clifton & Cabot Neighbourhood Partnership for their financial support. Above all, we must thank the many local people who came forward to make it clear that the park was needed and to suggest their own ideas for improvement. Their presence was invaluable when the possibility of funding became a reality. Work on the park may start as soon as May. An opening party to celebrate seems a good idea. We’ll publicise the date as soon as we have a firm date for completion.

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

Hotwells, Bristol, BS8 4QW



Community News
Charles Place office closes
But the work of the Community Association will go on much as before, trying to serve your community and ensure the good things are maintained and that the not so good things are prevented or improved. For many years the CA operated out of what was then Hope Centre. We then moved in 2007 to Hotwell Road and almost a year later to Charles Place. Time was when the CA had sources of funding, not least from Bristol City Council, to support some of our activities but, as with many voluntary organisations, this funding has dried up. We have managed to keep our office this long with the generous help of the Panto fund and our own reserves. However, circumstances have changed and we now have fewer visits to the office, fewer meetings or letters to attend to; more e-mail, social media and internet communication, which can be dealt with from anywhere by exploiting the computer technology now available for trustees and supporters to share information from home. Our current office occupies a space in Dr. Ring’s surgery which anticipates an extension of activity this summer when all the space will be occupied for health care, so we are sure the timing is right. We can assure you that we shall continue to try and serve the area as we have done in the past. Our move coincides with Rosemary Stibbons’ decision to resign her post as our admin assistant. Rosemary has given very many years of loyal service to HCCA, as active member, Trustee and our administrative support. Rosemary moved away from Hotwells some years ago and is becoming more and more involved in her “new” community in Windmill Hill, so we take this opportunity to say a very big thank you to her for all she has done and wish her well for the future.
Dennis Gornall

Hotwells Surgery expanding
Dr. Ring is planning to open the practice in Charles Place every weekday from Juneand the practice is available for new patients –see advert on back page for times of opening.

Pizza Vin proprietor talks to HCCA members
Following the rejection of the latest application for an alcohol licensing extension by Pizza Vin in Hotwell Road (see last edition), owner Paul Singh courageously agreed to come to our community meeting on March 11th at the Pump House. Mr Singh helped to clarify the way in which the business operated and responded to questions from neighbours. The existing license enables Pizza Vin to sell alcohol in the shop until 23:30 and for home delivery, after the shop is closed, until 04:00. Although he would have liked to have kept the shop open longer Mr. Singh claimed only 1 in 10 deliveries included an order for alcohol. Following the emphatic refusal of the latest application with objections from 50 local residents and organisations as well as the Police, he said he now had no intention of applying for another extension in the future. He also referred to his charitable work; raising funds for homeless people through the Julian Trust.

New bus service
A company called ‘Bristol Greyhound’ now runs an hourly weekday X7 service from Clevedon (in a nostalgic cream and green livery) that stops on Hotwell Road including Dowry Square) and goes to the Centre and Temple Meads. The fare is £1.50 single /£2 return (for more on buses see page 4)

Chiropody services now available locally
Alison Hurford & Associates have opened new premises near the Doctor’s Surgery in Charles Place, Hotwells, although the business has been operating for 18 years. For contact details see advert (back page).

Deer, oh Deer!
For the last few months we have had one, and later a second, beautiful deer coming into our garden from the wild area between the Portway and the Avon Gorge Hotel. Our house sits by a gap between terraces on St Vincent’s Parade and also has an old bridleway running up the side, so we think they are finding their way down through there. We eventually contacted Mandy Leivers, the Avon Gorge and Downs biodiversity education officer. She proved very helpful: “They sound like roe deer that live wild around here. We have regular sightings of them in the gorge and on the Downs. They’re part of our natural fauna rather than Ashton Court escapees. Roe deer numbers have been increasing in recent years so we’re getting more sightings of them and it really isn’t unusual to see them in Clifton and Westbury park gardens. They regularly swim between Leigh Woods and the Bristol side of the gorge. I suspect that because spring is so late this year they’re venturing into your garden because there’s a lack of food in the woods. I’m sure once the leaves start to burst they’ll head back to the woods again.” Heartbreakingly, they stand at our fence, gazing longingly across the river, as if they wish to join some other deer somewhere. They usually stay at the fence until a noisy truck goes by on the Portway, or they spot us looking at them through the kitchen window.
Jayne Marshall

Hotwells & Cliftonwood Community Association c/o Southernhay House, Southernhay, Bristol BS8 4TL tel: 0117 9291883

Management Committee
Dennis Gornall (Chair) Brenda McLennan (Treasurer) Rosemary Stibbon Administrator Ray Smith Communications Mike Timmins Open spaces Helena Kowalski Anna Wilson


Community News
Trinity Care Service reduced
Trinity Care Service, which is part of Holy Trinity Church Hotwells, has provided a Day Centre for older people in Hotwells and surrounding areas for many years. With a hot meal, friendship, and activities. Its main aim is to reduce isolation and loneliness. This has in the past been supported by funding from Bristol City Council Health and Social Care, paid directly as a block funding grant. From March 2012 the method of funding changed to a “personal budget” system which links directly to individuals rather than services. In March 2012 about 25% of our clients qualified for this new funding. Inevitably over time they have become more frail and moved on. Since then, TCS has not had clients referred to take their place with Health & Social Care funding which would have maintained a secure financial base. The numbers of those who are not eligible for personal budgets -some in their 90’s -are rising but there is no Health & Social Care funding to cover the costs of this preventative care service. Without this, we have had to rely very heavily on fundraising. So far, local charities, individuals and organisations, including the Neighbourhood Partnership, have been very generous and enabled us to stay afloat, but this funding is becoming much more difficult. The TCS Management Committee have therefore decided that reliance on donations to the extent that we do- the vast majority of our funding means that in the long term TCS is no longer viable in its current form. The Management Committee has looked at the alternatives of: a. carrying on as we are for a short period until we have used all available funds and then closing completely, b. very significantly increasing our meal and day charges or
the former Dock Gates Tavern as it has looked for some years

green light
from Transition Hotwells & Cliftonwood

c. reducing the level of our service enabling us to carry on for a longer period. We have concluded that the latter is the best alternative and TCS will reduce its service from the current three day opening to a one day a week service on Thursdays only with effect from 30th June 2013. Sadly, this will mean redundancies for our long serving staff who have done such magnificent work in keeping us going in the face of all these changes. Our service users will be supported in the change, hopefully most will switch to Thursdays and we will help find alternative day services for them in the local area. TCS welcomes all support from the local community in this new way forward-as volunteers, Committee Members, Volunteers or Service Users. If you can help, give Andy Murray a call on 0117 973 4281 or email :

It's spring time – with fun events available and more on the horizon. You can ride the new cycle route to Long Ashton! Follow the Route 33 / Festival Way signs from the footbridge near CREATE through the allotments, past Bower Ashton, and through the car park on the far side of Ashton Court. Turn right along the traffic-free path on the pavement beside the B3128 and cross via new crossing. A new cycleway then takes you into Long Ashton.

Hotwell Rd ruin cleared for demolition

Having worked up an appetite with a healthy cycle you can buy locally produced food with the local “Bristol Pound” currency at Reg the Veg in Boyces Avenue, or “Text2Pay” at Clifton Thali if you feel like a change from cooking, and help develop a resilient local economy at the same time. Looking further ahead, Bristol's Big Green Week in June will include the launch of the Solar City project, with 60 million pounds of PV investment currently lined up by Bristol Power Co-operative. If you would like to learn more, or keep in touch with with other sustainability activities in Bristol, contact Richard, to join the the Transition Hotwells and Cliftonwood mailing list, or come to one of the "Lion" meetings - dates listed on the HCCA website.

protests about cuts to TCS outside Holy Trinity church last year

After a string of failed planning applications developers have obtained permission to demolish the ruins of 151 Hotwell Road which has been an eyesore for many years. The remaining 18th century facade of the building is said to be structurally unsound following earlier partial demolition. Sitting between Pooles Wharf flats and Brandon Hire, This was for many years the ‘New Dock Gates Tavern’ on the corner of Dock Gate Lane and still marked as a pub on the 1949 OS map. It later became offices before falling into decay. No planning application for redevelopment was available at the time of going to press but it seems likely an application will be submitted for a new residential block.


Why should we care about Bristol’s bus omni-shambles?
For many of you reading this in Hotwells & Cliftonwood, buses are little short of irrelevant in your daily life. They have a reputation for being perennially unreliable, frequented by people you would not invite round to dinner and above all, expensive for the service they perform. In fact, buses have become a ghetto for the young who can’t drive and for the old, who currently use them for ‘free’. For almost anyone with access to a car, they are an unattractive travel option. For years the City has been caught in a vicious spiral of increasing car use feeding the congestion that makes public transport even less attractive to a declining minority. With one car for every 2.2 people (and a quarter of all households owning more than 1 car, according to the last census) Bristol has, become an exemplar of a failed public transport network. Car drivers cite the cost of fares as a reason for not using the bus but it’s cars that use road space inefficiently and congestion is the main reason, along with poor utilisation, why operating buses is so expensive which, in turn is why fares are so high. There are some good things happening, like real-time arrival information which is available for all stops from your smartphone ( even if not on display at the stop. But some buses are still not equipped with the technology and the results are sometimes erratic and misleading. What about plans to introduce a prepaid ‘oyster card’ system in Bristol? Surely the obvious way of speeding up boarding times and reducing delays to other traffic. These were first announced in September 2011 for introduction in the ‘autumn’ then announced again in June 2012 for launching ‘sometime early in 2013’. We are still waiting. This might all remain irrelevant were it not for the steady dilution of the ‘Bus Rapid Transit’ concept by pressure on funding and political compromise to the point where it will be no more than another conventional bus route, snared in the general traffic mayhem and unlikely to jump-start the ’modal shift’ to public transport to which it aspires. Meanwhile a new mayoral determination to roll out residents’ parking zones (RPZ’s) across the whole City may be a game-changer for public transport in Bristol as parking space for commuters is squeezed ever tighter. But trying to increase bus use by removing alternatives without doing anything about service quality is surely a poor strategy. Here’s an extract from a presentation made by local transport campaigner James Smith to Bristol Civic Society last year:

“So what else should we be looking at within Bristol? Well how about some real targets for our buses? Let me suggest:: 85% user satisfaction Services running up to midnight on 2/3 of main routes Unlimited travel for £2 per day 85% households have regular daytime services to city centre, to employment sites, to hospitals and to universities. All buses on main routes less than 5 years old. New waiting facilities at all main bus stops. An impossible dream? No just 6 out of 14 facts about Nottingham’s buses. It can be done and it must be done.”
To illustrate the shambolic state of bus services in Bristol we can draw on experience very close to home. We have a growing number of complaints from Hotwells residents about the summary abandoning of the Dowry Square stop by First Bus (see last edition). The official response from the operator places the blame squarely with the City Council for not upgrading or moving the stop: “During our discussions (with BCC) we had been highlighting particular safety issues in relation to the bus stop at Dowry Square. In recent years we have had vehicles struck from behind whilst entering Dowry Square bus stop and we had several reported near misses with vehicles travelling down Hope Chapel Hill at excess speed”. But local resident Mike Timmins has made a telling observation: “I noticed that a new timetable had been displayed on the bus shelter. This proclaimed that the buses are once again stopping at the Dowry Square bus stop - BUT ONLY TO LET PASSENGERS OFF!!! This decision ...completely destroys the argument that the stop had been eliminated because of health and safety issues concerning buses rejoining Hotwell Road - unless, of course that risk is magically reduced the minute one or two passengers alight...” it’s not enough to get annoyed with just the bus operators. We asked the City Transport Dept. about the feasibility of making a simple change to the stop, funded by an Active Neighbourhood Transport Grant but they have not even responded to us or our local Councillor before the closing date for an application. Another opportunity lost. Meanwhile, there is confusion about the inbound 902 Park and Ride Bus (operated by CT Plus) which we were assured is now stopping to pick up passengers from Hotwell Road. Usually they ignore my flapping arm but recently I did manage to board one of these for the first time. The driver then said ‘I’m not supposed to do this’; so it seems, no instructions have been given to drivers regarding any new procedure. Ray Smith


Now you can become a Bristol Ferry supporter
We in Hotwells have a keen interest in the Bristol Ferry service that brings visitors into our locality but also offers us a uniquely tranquil and scenic alternative for getting to and from the City centre. It was therefore good news to discover that an ad hoc consortium of 44 supporters had managed to purchase the boats from the receiver after the company went into liquidation (see last edition of Hotwells News). Now, revitalised by new management and having shed the debt mountain that was crippling the business, the future looks bright. Even with the dire weather of 2012 the old company managed a healthy annual turnover of £400,000. The aim is to operate with a strong public service ethos for the benefit of customers and staff and and encourage a broad spectrum of local people to participate in the future of the business. The first step is to replace the temporary loans used to purchase the boats with new investment that will ensure the financial stability of the business in the longer term. The new management, including If you’ve wondered about the strange collection of gas cylinders in the original founders Philippa and Ian Bungard, are in the proc- a cage beside Cumberland Basin, it’s the re-fuelling station for the longess of setting up a co-operative awaited hydrogen powered boat structure called a ‘Community ‘Hydrogenesis’, a joint venture by Benefit Society’, which will be able to raise £250,000 through a public offer of shares. Bristol Packet Boat Trips, No 7 ferInvestors will be invited to contribute anything from £100-£20,000 to become memries and Auriga Energy. This ‘zero bers of the new ‘Bristol Community Ferry Boats Ltd’. Every shareholder will receive emission’ ferry will carry 12 passenone vote at the AGM, regardless of size of investment and the company will aim to pay gers between Arnolfini and the Great Britain in a 6 month trial, once the interest to shareholders, as well as offering discounts on travel. inevitable teething problems have It is hoped that the share offer will be open before the end of May and the prospectus been sorted out. Keith Dunstan of and an application form will be available for download from the website. Meanwhile, Bristol Packet says “it will be the first Ian & Philippa would be happy to hear from anyone interested in a possible investment piece of fuel cell transport in the by emailing Contact them to make sure you receive all the country” necessary documents. Bristol Ferry’s 5 boats are on the water The Company is exploring new ideas and currently running a regular service for interesting themed trips, group from the Centre to Hotwells every 40 min- travel for pensioners, children and utes from the Pump House (11 trips a day others as well as possible music and starting at 10:47). There is also an hourly theatrical events. If you have a Centre to Temple Meads service and op- whacky idea, or a group looking for portunities for additional sightseeing, edu- a novel kind of excursion, then get in cational and private hire trips. touch.

Tiny battles rage in redundant pub
When one of the most historic pubs in Hotwells, The Spring Garden Tavern, sadly closed last year, many people were left wondering what would become of it. Not many people, however, would have guessed at, ‘independent war gaming store and venue’. Vanguard War Gaming took up residence in the former pub in December last year and describes itself as an independent gaming store with a close affiliation to the Bristol Vanguard, a table-top gaming group who hold weekly war gaming sessions there. The ethos for both is to: “Play games, socialise and have fun, all in the name of toy soldiers”. The Vanguardians “model, paint and compete” at the shop, running events at the Hotwells venue throughout the year. I spoke to the shop manager, Jay to find out more about how the latest addition to Hotwell Road came to be and he explained that Marcus, owner of neighbouring gym, Fitfirm, is a keen Bristol Vanguard gamer and so when the lease on the pub became available, he took it on and created the shop and gaming space. Jay is also local, and lives on Goldney Road, so it is a real community venture. Indeed, Jay was keen to express how the shop and venue, despite mostly catering to members of The Bristol Vanguard from across the city and beyond, are firmly for, and part of, the Hotwells and Cliftonwood community. On Saturdays and Sunday, kids from Hotwells Primary School come in and play together and on the busiest nights there are up to thirty people all competing together, so don’t be fooled by that calm mono-exterior, inside it’s all fun and games! Jayne Marshall


Events & Reviews
Summer at Cumberland Piazza
Two projects are under development to enliven Hotwells largest open space over the Summer. Hotwells Green Days Out will highlight destinations within reach of the several largely traffic-free walking and cycling routes that radiate from the Piazza. The idea is to provide opportunities for exploration that might interest families wanting a car-free day out, as well as other trips within the capabilities of independent older children or seniors. Individuallydesigned displays on the Piazza will describe available routes and destinations and there will be leaflets as well as web-based information to help you get the most from your exploration. We hope visitors will also provide feedback about their own trips and perhaps suggest other destinations that might appeal to others at least 5 car-free routes are accessible from Cumberland Piazza using the network of available paths. We are hoping to get financial support from the Active Neighbourhood Transport Grants offered by the City Council . If successful there will be an opening event, probably in July. We will be able to provide more details after the local elections in May. Keep an eye on local noticeboards and our visitor website for further information. To get the ball rolling let us know if you have any suggestions for a great place to visit within a half-day ride or walk of Hotwells. Contact Ray Smith E-mail: Hotwells Arts (HA!) is inviting artists to propose ideas for sitespecific, temporary artwork interventions or creative pop-up events/ happenings to take place in Cumberland Piazza during the 2013 West Bristol Arts Trail weekend (12th-13th October). Funding has been confirmed for this and the person to contact if you are an artist is Anna Wilson E-mail: to get a copy of the brief. We are also interested in hearing from volunteers to participate in a group selecting work for display at the event or helping to organise the weekend.

the ‘Art Under the Flyover’ event in 2011 was the first time Cumberland Piazza had been used in this way

Hotwells Pantomime
‘King Arthur and the Knights of the Cumberland Basin’ played to the usual capacity audience for 4 nights in March. In fact 2 nights sold out within hours of the tickets becoming available. The show was ambitiously staged with a cast of thousands (well, at least 50) at the limit of what resources the space in Hope Chapel could provide. As well as a giant bed, projectile baby, shadow puppets and some deafening pyrotechnics, it somehow incorporated a flying suspension bridge and an elevating band leader (Sue Otty –see pic. right) into the story. Our thanks to the ever-tolerant Hannah and Chris of Hope Community Church for putting up with this annual disruption again. The production made a healthy contribution to funds available for community projects.


Events Diary
Thu May 2nd Fri May 3rd-31st Sun May 5th Sun May 5th-12th when what where Holy Trinity Church 07:00- City Council Election 22:00 Bristol Festival of Ideas Bristol 10K run (road closures 06:00-11:30) Bristol Walking Festival leisure-and-culture/bristolwalking-festival-2013 10:00- Clifton Rocks Railway Open 16:00 Day (no children under 14) 19:30 HCCA Community Meeting Residents Parking Zone proposals Bristol Concert Wind Band Bristol’s Biggest Bike Ride Home.html Bristol Cycle Festival Bristol Festival of Nature festival.html Big Green Week Gromit Unleashed http:// St. Pauls Carnival http:// Up to 70 locations around Bristol Portland Square and around Harbourside Cumberland Basin Locations around Bristol

HCCA Spring 2013 Community Commendation
Highlighting initiatives that have improved the quality of life in our neighbourhood.

Sun May 12th Mon Jun 3rd Sat Jun Sun Jun 16th Sat July 13th-Sun 21st Sat Jun 15th-16th Sat Jun 15th-23rd July 1stSep 7th Sat July 6th

Sion Hill, Clifton Holy Trinity Church

Cliftonwood Community Garden Argyle Place - looking superb in the spring sunshine. Congratulations to everyone who has contributed to this!


Holy Trinity Church Cumberland Basin



Venue available for hire
Music gigs, private functions, exhibitions, training days, clubs & classes. Multiple spaces, 2 bars/ stage/sprung floor dance studio/skittle alley/garden area

0117 966 5552
Dean Lane, Bristol BS3 1DB

A harbourside walk from Hotwells


Local Services

provides time for stillness in a busy world Gentle Class Thursdays from Jan 10th, 11.00-12:30 Clifton Library, Princess Victoria Street Call Em Sawday to book a place 0117-9738213 or 07833751235

Hotwells Surgery
2, Charles Place, Hotwells, BS8 4QW

0117 929 4334
From June 1st 2013 the Hotwells Surgery will be open Monday to Friday every morning from 8:30 to 1:00pm and between 3:00pm and 6:00pm every afternoon except Thursday. We are an NHS practice and currently registering new patients.

Dowry Chiropractic Clinic
3 Dowry Place Hotwells, Bristol BS8 4QL come and see one of our BCA & GCC registered Chiropractors, specialising in: Back Pain Muscle and joint pain Neck and shoulder pain Sports injuries Migraines Arthritis support Headaches Hip/knee/ankle/foot problems Treatments include: spinal & extremity manipulation, mobilisation, remedial massage, dry needling and posture & lifestyle advice. Call 0117 9298384 to book your appointment or a free 15 minute consultation

0117 973 7132