County of Bristol
Information and Tourism
It is a little known fact that Bristol has been a city with county status ever since the Middle Ages. Over the years, its boundaries have expanded ever further outwards. Nowadays, it can quite rightly be called the biggest urban and cultural area in this part of South-West England. By day, Bristol makes for a grand day out, with plenty of museums, galleries and shops to entertain locals and visitors alike. By night, the city turns up the volume a notch or two, with its nightclubs adding an extra buzz.
It is a shame that Bristol sits in the shadow of its more historical and genteel neighbour, the city of Bath
. When it comes to architecture, it is fair to say that Bristol isn't in the same league as Bath. Many of the city's buildings suffered terribly during World War Two. Thankfully, though, the elegant Clifton neighbourhood survived. The Clifton Suspension Bridge is an iconic symbol of the city. So too is the Brunel-designed SS Great Britain, anchored in the original Dry Dock in which she was built.
Bristol is the home of all sorts of artistic endeavours, particularly in the music and film industries. The animated plasticine figures of Wallace and Grommit hail from the city, under the watchful eye of their creator Nick Parks. Bristol has a well-respected theatre company known as the Bristol Old Vic. Created in the late 1940s, it was conceived as an off-shoot of the London version. The city has also given birth to music bands that have generated a whole new set of sounds, from punk and funk to trip hop, also known as the 'Bristol Sound'. Bristol is the home of Banksy, an acclaimed graffiti artist-cum-political activist who applies his own unique method of street art to the city's public buildings.
There is no getting away from the fact that this city has a distinctly 'alternative' feel. It plays host to several foodie festivals every year. It is not unknown for pop-up restaurants to emerge unexpectedly. In recent years, Bristol has also been rated as the UK's most sustainable city. This is, after all, the home of the Sustrans charitable organisation, a local cycle initiative that has spawned the UK's National Cycle Network.
County of Bristol Information and Fast Facts
- Country: England
- Region: South-West England
- Population: approximately 450,000
- County administrative town or city: Bristol
- Language: English
- Area: 40 square miles / 104 square kilometres
Map of Bristol Area