31 Oct 2020
Starting up close in Hotwells with a few bits around the Cumberland Basin flyover system, I walked to Bedminster and back on Hallowe'en, including finding some excellent decoration work.
The spike of land with the dockkeepers' cottage on it has been cordoned off for the last couple months as I write this (on 4 Jan 2021; I'm processing my backlog.) Back in October you could wander up to the end unimpeded.
02 Nov 2020
I've taken a lot of photos of Royal York Crescent over the years. This time I walked right to the dead-end bit at the far west corner and found a plaque to the Empress of the French. Call me hard to impress, but among the scientists, novelists, architects and artists whose plaques litter the rest of the area, that seems quite minor claim to fame.
03 Nov 2020
A very local exploration today, but there are still bits of the near field that I never need to walk down, so it didn't take me long to find somewhere I haven't been in a decade or more, the little enclave of smaller Victorian houses around Oldfield Road and Sandford Road. I'd really like to live in one of those houses, but I doubt I could afford it.
I do really like this little enclave of Hotwells. Shame I can't afford a house here.
Went up the ramp to get a better vantage point.
04 Nov 2020
Nice colours at Cumberland Basin today
I considered going down to the end of this engineering bit behind the Harbourmaster's office, but I know it's a dead end and I don't think the woman walking her dog did. It felt like it would be a bit weird to follow someone down a dead end, so maybe I'll go back another day. On the other hand, I don't think it counts as a public road..
05 Nov 2020
I spotted the fog and decided to go for a morning walk rather than a lunchtime walk today. It was cold on the Portway, but it was worth it. Most of my One Mile Matt photos are "record shots", but it's nice to get the chance to do something a bit more artistic.
There are a lot of car crashes on the Portway. I don't know how many end in fatalaties, but I feel like I hear about at least one every year. In a luckily non-fatal crash in 2019, an ambulance even managed to crash, ending up on its side.
I think that non-emergency vehicles probably tend to drive far too fast for the Portway when it's quiet as it looks like a nice fast road, but it clearly has some well-disguised dangers. Either that or they're all pissed.
06 Nov 2020
It's surprisingly easy to overlook the giant Wesleyan Grenville Chapel—now converted into flats—if you've lived here a while. Other sights that seem to slip from my memory include the modest Ashton Avenue, a tidy terrace of little houses on a road that presumably gave its name to the Ashton Avenue bridge.
Rear seating area at the under-flyover Lockside restaurant (The Venturers Rest, and Popeye's Diner as-was, as well as being Sid's Cafe in Only Fools and Horses.)
Looking towards Ashton Court and Leigh Woods
10 Nov 2020
I went to grab a coffee from Imagine That's little horsebox by the marina, completely forgetting that they don't open on Monday or Tuesday. On the plus side, on the way back I was in time to watch the Plimsoll Bridge swinging for a tidy little yacht.
Boats often do the nautical equivalent of pacing the room and tapping their feed when waiting in the Cumberland Basin for either the Plimsoll bridge or Merchants Road bridge, depending on their direction.
11 Nov 2020
I'd love to walk the Chocolate Path again at some point, but it's been closed since it started falling into the river. Still, on this wander to get a coffee I walked down a road I'd not normally use and found a door dressed up as a wall and another door that had been bricked up for real. Odd.
I also found a lovely bit of art on one of the Cumberland Piazza pillars on my way home.
12 Nov 2020
My goal is walk down every public road within a mile of me; sometimes it's not easy to tell what's public. I've passed the turning for Cornwallis Grove a thousand times, but never had a reason to venture down it, and although the street signs at the end seem to be council-deployed and I didn't spot any "private" signs, it's a gated road and definitely feels private.
Gathering all the white middle-class privilege I could muster, I wandered down and was rewarded with the sight of a Victorian pump, a statue of Jesus, and from the end of the road, a view of a private garden that once belonged to a private girls' school.
The Cornwallis House history page says:
In the early 20th century the house, together with Grove House, became a Catholic school, St Joseph’s High School for Girls. The Congregation of La Retraite took over the school in 1924, with the nuns living in Grove House while the schoolrooms were in Cornwallis House. The headmistress was Mother St Paul de la Croix (Sister Paula Yerby). By the 1970s La Retraite High School had around 700 pupils.
It closed in 1982 and the building was bought by Pearce Homes Ltd (now part of Crest Nicholson) who developed it into 21 flats. Grove House next door was bought by the Bristol Cancer Help Centre, and was later converted into flats in 2007.
Got to be Victorian, right?
13 Nov 2020
A quick trip with the aim of finding a better way to Greville Smyth park and a good coffee. Sadly I was stymied yet again with the former—it turns out that you do apparently have to take a strange loop around the houses (or at least around the roads) to get to Greville Smyth any way other than my normal route, unless you're prepared to vault some railings. It may be that the disused steps from where the skater kids hang out to the flyover above might once have led to a shorter route, but it's hard to tell. The geography in the area has always confused me.
This is one place the sign for Greville Smyth Park takes you. Presumably you're meant to dash across many lanes of busy road here.
Presumably this is where you're meant to dash across the road to from the ramp that leads up from the sign on the far side.
You can just tell from the one light in the grille that I managed to catch that the blues and twos were running. It was more dramatic in person.