The best places to eat in Bristol

Thousands of people have fled London for buzzy, creative Bristol in recent years. Among them: top chefs, bakers, brewers and baristas. ‘There’s a thriving community of young food entrepreneurs, many refugees from the viciously profit-driven London restaurant scene,’ says Xanthe Clay, chef, food writer and Bristolian. ‘They are taking advantage of lower rents and rates to cook what they want to cook – not what some venture capital backer demands.’ Those to watch include Jamie Randall and Olivia Barry – the chef team behind Adelina Yard, near Queen Square in the city centre – who bring experience working with the likes of Angela Hartnett. There’s also James Wilkins, an ex-pupil of

Meet the Bristol Tyre Extinguishers

If the world really does face a climate emergency, what ought you, personally, be doing about it? Should you, as increasing numbers of young people are doing, roam the streets at night letting down the tyres of SUVs? The fast-growing movement that calls itself the ‘Tyre Extinguishers’ thinks this is an effective approach, and has targeted thousands of SUVs in cities around the world. My home town of Bristol – always quick to espouse a green cause – has seen at least 200 SUVs ‘extinguished’ in recent weeks. Though they claim to be leaderless, the Extinguishers have a Twitter account where you can keep up-to-date with their latest ‘hits’, and

Bristol proves it: England doesn’t want elected mayors

Among the many council election results coming in today, the decision of the voters in Bristol to ditch the post of elected mayor, by a margin of 59 to 41 per cent, could easily get missed. Why does it matter? Because the government’s ‘levelling up’ agenda proposes to establish elected mayoralties all over England – on the assumption that it is something we will all welcome as a way to bolster local democracy. Yet Bristol is just the latest in a long series of results which prove the opposite: we keep telling the government that we don’t want elected mayors and yet it keeps trying to force them on us

Want to see your friends? Call it a protest

I wonder exactly when we agreed that it is more of a priority to gather with strangers than to meet loved ones? You might chart a number of moments, but the presumption seems to have become fixed. You might say that it started before the pandemic with the idea that truanting from school is worthy, even admirable, so long as it is done in opposition to climate change. Indeed as we learned this week, if you leave school for long enough then you may eventually have a statue erected to you in an English town known for its cathedral and school but not for its university. If you were an

It’s about time Bristol’s protestors grew up

As a citizen of Bristol who was kept awake all night, again, by a circling police helicopter, I am growing weary of the riots. Outside of London, we must be the most rioted-in city in mainland Britain. As Robert Gore-Langton writes, we riot with monotonous and increasing regularity, with major events in 1793, 1831, 1932, 1944,1980, 1981, 1987, 1992, 2011, 2019, and in 2020, when the statue of Edward Colston was toppled and dumped in the dock. Apparently, our tendency to become disorderly in public spaces – so marked it has been investigated by sociologists – dates back at least 700 years to the St James’s Fair, where people gathered

What is it with Bristol and rioting?

‘Bristol riots’ has a lengthy section of its own on Wikipedia. In the wake of the ugly scenes that erupted in the city at the weekend, the list of disturbances is now even longer. Police were injured, a few badly. Vans were set alight and the mindless joy of all that breaking glass became infectious — one young woman found time to skateboard during the mayhem as tires burnt, fireworks flew and bobbies bled. The riot is now being described romantically as the ‘the Battle of Bridewell Street’ after the street where the police station sits now daubed in graffiti. But in reality it was vicious. Despite Bristol’s well-heeled student population (said

The Bristol riots show the danger of ignoring anti-police extremism

The ugly scenes in Bristol last night make it plain to see that Britain can no longer turn a blind eye to a particular brand of political disorder. Violent clashes during the city’s ‘Kill the Bill’ demonstration – supposedly in protest against the Conservative government’s Police, Crime, Sentencing, and Courts Bill – resulted in 20 police officers being injured, burned-out police vans, and a police station being attacked. Two officers who were seriously injured suffered from broken ribs, a broken arm and a punctured lung. So who was to blame for this violence? The chairman of Avon and Somerset Police Federation, Andy Roebuck, labelled last night’s anarchy a form of ‘unprecedented violence’. And the city’s mayor, Marvin


Watch: Labour MP refuses to condemn Bristol violence

Oh dear. Appearing on BBC Two’s Politics Live this afternoon, Labour left winger Nadia Whittome refused to condemn the violent protesters in Bristol last night that left 20 policeman injured including two in a serious condition.  Despite being asked four times by presenter Jo Coburn, Whittome would only say ‘I’m not going to get into condemning protesters when we don’t know what’s happened yet. We need a full investigation into what has happened.’ It is worth noting that all four of Bristol’s Labour MPs and the city’s Labour mayor Marvin Rees have already criticised the actions of the protesters, with Rees claiming it was ‘selfish, self-indulgent, self-centred violence.’ Given that Whittome’s

How we laughed: the golden days of Bananarama

Saying you don’t like Bananarama is like saying you don’t like summer or Marilyn Monroe — a sure sign of a misanthropist who thinks that being a wet blanket makes them interesting. OK, they never had a blazing talent — their three small, sweet pipings barely adding up to one decent voice — but they were one step beyond even the glorious girls of the Human League: Have-a-Go-Heroines dancing round their handbags, a karaoke of themselves. Keren Woodward and Sara Dallin meet at infant school in Bristol. Their roustabout quality is evident when, as pre-teens, they engage in throwing bricks at each other’s ankles in a bid to skive off

Tanya Gold

The only man who didn’t want to be Cary Grant was Cary Grant himself

Cary Grant was a hoax so sublime his creator struggled to escape him. He was a metaphor, too, for the transformative magic of cinema, for its lies; and for the artifice and social mobility of the 20th century itself. His real name was Archie Leach, and he could, the critic David Thomson wrote, ‘be attractive and unattractive simultaneously; there is a light and dark side to him, but whichever is dominant, the other creeps into view’. Thomson thinks Grant the greatest film actor — I did not notice him in his first scene in The Philadelphia Story until he wanted me to notice him — but he was terrified of