Activists’ Memories

In recent years there have been many initiatives to celebrate the contribution of particular groups in Bristol’s history, but we know a lot of good people and achievements are excluded or forgotten, including older people. We plan to bring their contributions to life to celebrate and share by collecting and publishing their oral histories through the Activists’ Memories project. The project is a collaboration between Bristol Older Peoples’ Forum (BOPF) and Bristol Radical History Group (BRHG) […]

James Acland and The Bristolian (1827-1831)

In 1827, radical journalist James Acland launched the West Country’s first daily newspaper. He called it The BRISTOLIAN. Undercutting the advertising rates of existing weekly papers, conducting a lively letter column and breaking the law by publishing at one and a half pence without paying the newspaper stamp tax, Acland’s publication was a muck-raking popular radical paper for the working classes. The paper concentrated on exposing the abuses both of the unreformed Corporation which ran Bristol […]

Edward Colston

A close up of Colston's face from his statue in Bristol's centre
This project page collects together all the research and other materials on the leading slave trader Edward Colston (1636-1721). For more on the campaign to challenge the celebration and memorialisation of Colston see the Countering Colston website.

Bristol’s WWI Conscientious Objectors

Whiteford brothers
Last spring, based on documents in the Central Library, we published details of 47 men from Bristol who were imprisoned as conscientious objectors during World War 1. For moral, religious or political reasons they refused to take part in the war. Many people contacted us having seen these names and provided us with more information about these men or other conscientious objectors. Nationally, Cyril Pearce, has been working for many years to compile a database of conscientious objectors. To date […]

Eastville Workhouse

The Eastville Workhouse project was launched in 2012 after some members of Bristol Radical History Group (BRHG) had studied an old ordnance survey map of Ashley Down and Eastville (1902). They noticed that the burial ground for the Barton Regis workhouse at 100 Fishponds Rd, Eastville, marked as 'disused' in 1902, made up part of present-day Rosemary Green just round the corner from where they lived. After two years of research, BRHG members had not only gathered significant evidence that […]