Cumberland Basin & Western Harbour plans: History and timeline

Rather than give lots of individual links for everything referred to below we encourage those that want to explore further to use the relevant pages of the website of the Bristol Neighbourhood Planning Network (BNPN). References starred and numbered below refer to the numbers on the contents list on the web pages here.

  • October 2017: Marvin Rees’ ‘State of the City Address’ refers to the idea of a major development in the area of Cumberland Basin.

  • February 2018: Dennis Gornall and Councillor Mark Wright meet with Alison Bromilow from Bristol’s Neighbourhood Planning Network (BNPN) to discuss creating a Cumberland Basin Stakeholder Group (CBSG) as both a vehicle for dialogue with Bristol City Council (BCC) and to protect the interests of local people as the plans develop.

  • April 2018: The Bristol ‘Local Plan Review’ (the emerging draft of a replacement Development Plan for Bristol) was out for consultation and a meeting was held in Holy Trinity Hotwells with BCC officers to hear about the proposals for our area and the Local Plan generally. In a way, this meeting produced more heat than light as it was soon very clear that very little could be said about the development until the report from the consultants, in this case Ove Arup & Partners (Arup), became available. This was because it was felt that little could be planned until decisions had been made as to whether and/or how the road network might be altered to increase the potential for development land that could be used.

  • Early 2018: At this time we also became aware of the Mayor’s ‘Bristol Investment Brochure’ which highlighted “Western Harbour” as one of the ‘major opportunities for investors and developers’ in Bristol.*15

  • June 2018: Members of the CBSG met with members of the Mayor’s office to press for early community involvement in any thinking around this development. On 28th June the Mayor set out his response to the request for community involvement.* 14

  • October 2018: Again at the Mayor’s ‘State of the City Address’ raises the potential of “Western Harbour”.*12

  • October 2018: The CBSG wrote to the Mayor with 3 particular requests:
    • That artist’s impressions and computer graphic images of development ideas should be clearly marked as such. This is to avoid people believing that what was being shown (at the State of the City Address for instance) was real and the Mayor’s plan. This was accepted.
    • We asked for information as to when we could see the Arup report and discuss ways of sharing it with the community and enter some kind of discussion with BCC about the options. We did not get a full answer on this, and indeed, it was not until the cabinet papers for 5th November 2019 were released that we could see what the report is saying.
    • We asked for the red line of the boundary for the developmental area to be changed such that the buildings on Avonquay Island opposite the Pump House Pub would not be included. This was to help the organisations there secure longer leases to their premises from BCC and thus facilitate their chances of bidding for grants to support their activities. Happily, after further meetings, this was granted and soon after this, longer leases were granted as well.

  • April 2019: Members of the CBSG met with BCC officers and staff from Arup to discuss their plans for “consultation” documentation and displays on road alteration options which were planned for May/June.

  • April 2019: At this time also the Local Plan Review was up for consultation. Again as far as Western Harbour was concerned this lacked substance because progress had not been made on the plans for adjusting the road network.*16

  • August/September 2019: BCC publish their ‘Initial Western Harbour Engagement’ document and ask for people’s views on three changed road configurations which “can be compared against an approach of investing in maintaining the existing infrastructure”. A number of open public engagement sessions were held by BCC and there was the opportunity to complete an on-line survey.*4

  • 11th September 2019: HCCA and the CGSG held a public meeting on 11th September after the public engagement sessions, and before the deadline for comment on the 15th of September. This was well attended by some 180 people. A summary of this meeting and the general spirit of the reactions of those present was sent to the Mayor and senior officers at BCC on the 14th of September. You can read that summary here * The Mayor’s response on the 24th can be seen here.

  • October 2019: The Mayor decides to establish the Western Harbour Advisory Group (WHAG) and invites Dennis Gornall, as Chair of the CBSG to join. Details re the WHAG can be found here.

  • November 2019: Bristol Council’s Cabinet papers are published with the Arup report and a summary of the engagement process. These can be found in Cabinet papers here. (N.B. This is a huge document as it also contains everything about the Clean Air Zone which went to Cabinet at the same time. You have therefore to turn to page 1008 to find the papers to do with Western Harbour!) The Arup report can be viewed separately through the (BNPN) site*2

  • January 2020: The WHAG agrees to an “early engagement plan”. BCC officers will meet with residents and business interests within the red line of development indicated by the Local Plan. Members of the WHAG, led by John Savage, will meet with other stakeholders both local and interests that are Bristol wide. The purpose of these meetings will be to outline more clearly exactly what stage the process is at, to explain more clearly the highway options that are still on the table (up to 7 possibly) and to listen to ideas and views from as many as possible.
Add your reaction Share

2019 AGM

Our 2019 Annual General Meeting took place last November at the Holy Trinity Church Hotwell Road BS8 4ST

Please click here to view the minutes of the meeting which includes:

  • Chairman and Treasurer’s reports and approval of accounts,
  • Brief reports on other activities and initiatives,
  • Election of the Management Committee,
  • Notes of a short open session for where attendees raised issues, asked questions, made suggestions.

We watched 2 films presented by Gordon Young, a local award winning film maker with an interest in Bristol’s history

Add your reaction Share

Mayor's Response to Community Views about 'Western Harbour' proposals

In response to the community's views for the meeting of 11th September 2019, Dennis Gornall wrote to Marvin Rees and the Mayor wrote back on the 24th with the following:

1 reaction Share

HCCA Response to 'Western Harbour' consultation

Here is a copy of the Western Harbour Feedback sent to Bristol City Council from the Hotwells and Cliftonwood Community Association and the Cumberland Basin Stakeholder Group on possible road network changes

Read more
Add your reaction Share

Community Meeting to discuss 'Western Harbour' proposals

You can find out more here

A local resident has created a petition, which asks the council to share the other 7 options that the consultants have produced. Please follow this link if you'd like to view this.


Add your reaction Share

Local News

January 2020 Bulletin 51

Welcome to this month’s e-newsletter for HCCA, sharing community news from Hotwells, Cliftonwood, Spike Island and wider Bristol. If you wish to contribute to our next bulletin, please send us a short paragraph and link/s where relevant by 31stJanuary. We would always be very happy to hear from you.   Visit our website for more!

Happy New Year

In this issue:

  1. Cumberland Basin News
  2. Labour Party Meeting re Cumberland Basin
  3. Hotwells Panto
  4. Hotwell Road Bus stop change
  5. Resident Parking Scheme changes
  6. Cleaner Air Campaign
  7. Crime report
  8. Clifton Climate Action
  9. Friends of Clifton Library
  10. Friends of Redland Library
  11. Bristol Harbourside Monday Morning Social Running
  12. Lifeskills Safety Education Centre
  13. Jacob’s Well Hub and Baths news
  14. Good Grief Bristol
  15. Petition regarding Bristol Airport expansion
  16. Fostering in Bristol
  17. Big Tidy Pledges

1. Cumberland Basin News. There really is little to report since our last bulletin. Sadly the General Election seemed to get in the way of the chance to start a discussion with Councillor Nicola Beech who has a remit over spatial planning. We were hoping to start discussing aspects other than roads. Whether we get the chance before the local election purdah remains to be seen.

2. Labour Party Meeting re Cumberland Basin. We are advised that the postponed meeting with the Mayor which should have happened in November is now scheduled for Wednesday 22nd January 6pm – 7.30 in Holy Trinity Church, Hotwell Rd. We understand that this will be an opportunity to hear Marvin  Rees talk on “The Future of Hotwells and Harbourside”. All are welcome

3. Hotwells Panto.  “The Mardyke Mermaid” – a fishy tail of the love of a mermaid for an ordinary mortal! This is the Panto’s 40th production. Don’t miss out. Performances 11th to 14th March. More information re ticket sales will be circulated when known. 

4. Hotwell Road Bus stop change. Some of you may have used the new stop outside Hillsborough. It has been brought to our attention that there are no seats in the shelter and no real time information board. We will try and lobby appropriately to get these improvements in place. 

5. Resident Parking Scheme changes. You may not be aware that Bristol City Council have introduced changes to Residents Parking schemes which are now effective. The announcement was made through a press release which we feel most residents will not know about. The main changes are: 1. The Permit will in future be electronic, like your vehicle licence. 2. Visitor permits will no longer be paper permits but will

have to be registered from a device when your visitor arrives. 3. Visitor permits will relate just to one vehicle visit. This means that if you have a number of visitors at different times on the same day you will not be able to use just one permit for them all, you will have to register each one separately and each one will now count as one permit used. 4. Your permits will only last for a year from the date of issue. Any unused permits will not be able to be carried forward to the next year period. It is claimed that this will be more convenient to users and this may be the case for some. Nothing was said about the increase in cost for the users of visitor permits. Full details can be found at

6. Cleaner Air Campaign. We noticed an article in Bristol 24/7, written by a local GP headed “If we are serious about improving the air we breathe, we need to stop burning wood”. We know this maybe a contentious issue for many who have wood burning stoves but it is worthy of attention, not least because of who wrote it. See 

7. Crime report. Vehicle crime is still high in the Clifton beat, which includes Cliftonwood and Hotwells. Please be vigilant and help reduce temptation by ensuring that your vehicle has nothing on display that might attract a thief’s attention. Maybe we can all help each other just a bit by keeping temptation to a minimum.

8. Clifton Climate Action. CCA are setting up big practical projects to get Clifton to go low-carbon, support wildlife and reduce pollution. Free talks at Clifton Library on the 2nd and 4th Thursday of every month. You can also sign up to their newsletter. Go to

9. Friends of Clifton Library. To see regular events and classes at the Library go to

10. Friends of Redland Library. Thursday 9th January Desert Island Books on Books & Climate Change. Tuesday 28th January “From Page to Screen”. More information at

11. Bristol Harbourside Monday Morning Social Running.  New Years resolutions????! Led by local runners, the run is open to all abilities and perfect for those looking for some daytime social running. It’s not competitive - no one is left behind - and it’s free to take part. Weekly on Mondays 9.30am, Mardyke Steps. Be at Mardyke Steps across from The Mardyke pub next to The Grain Barge at 9:25 for a 9:30 start. The run lasts for about an hour finishing roughly around 10.30. Running will be mainly on road on the harbourside circuit, towpath and Ashton Court. We head for a coffee afterwards. For more go to:

12. Lifeskills Safety Education Centre. The Centre is recruiting 20 Tour Guides in 2020!  They are seeking 20 child-friendly people from all walks of life to join their team in a unique and fun volunteering role. Join them on Weds, 15th January 10:30am – 11:30am for an introduction to Lifeskills and take a tour around the realistic village where you’ll see how they help primary school children (age 10/11) learn valuable life skills. To book a place (or to arrange visit on an alternative date) please contact Sam Jury, Volunteer Co-ordinator on: tel: 0117 922 4511 or email: [email protected]  Find out more about them at:

13. Jacob’s Well Hub and Baths news. We are hoping to hear good news about the future of the Baths and hopefully see some work on the building starting during this year. To follow information about this and the activities of the Hub go to and sign up to their newsletter

14. Good Grief Bristol. May 2020. This is a city-wide festival that aims to help people think, talk and learn about grief. There will be a series of events in the centre of Bristol, but the hope is that the festival will extend across the whole city, engaging communities which might access bereavement support less than other groups. Community events and activities are a major part of this vision, and Good Grief Community Event Grants will provide funding from £50 to £400 for local organisations to run activities and events during the festival period. For guidance and an application form, go to -  Deadline for applications is 31 January 2020.

15. Petition regarding Bristol Airport expansion. We are sure that you are aware that there is quite a debate about the pros and cons of expansion of Bristol Airport, particularly in the light of concerns about Climate change. If you want to add weight to those who object to the expansion of the airport you might want to sign a petition available here.

16. Fostering in Bristol.  If you are interested to foster there is an opportunity to find out more at a Fostering Coffee Morning on Thursday 30 January at the Tinto Lounge, Gloucester Road. Drop in between 9.30 and 11.30am to chat with a local foster carer on their experiences, the support available to you and how to get involved. For more info on this and other upcoming fostering events go to

17. Big Tidy Pledges. We want to encourage everyone to participate in their own way in helping to keep our streets tidier. Ideas as to how we might achieve this as a community would be very welcome. The City Council is encouraging us to all join in. Pledges can be as simple as promising to pick up litter as you go about your journey, taking your own litter home to be recycled, or reporting tagging and fly-tipping. You can find out more here:


December 2019 Bulletin 50

Welcome to this month’s e-newsletter for HCCA, sharing community news from Hotwells, Cliftonwood, Spike Island and wider Bristol. If you wish to contribute to our next bulletin, please send us a short paragraph and link/s where relevant by 31st December. We would always be very happy to hear from you.   Visit our website for more!

50 Bulletins feels like quite a milestone. We hope they are useful and of interest to you. If you have ideas for improvements please let us know.

We have some 280 people on our mailing list but we are sure we could reach more people with your help. So if you know anyone in the area who is not in receipt of our bulletin please encourage them to sign up on our website Thank you

We would like to wish all our readers a very Happy Christmas and a wonderful New Year

In this issue:

  1. Cumberland Basin News
  2. Hotwells Panto
  3. General Election Polling station changes
  4. Hotwell Road Bus stop change
  5. Labour Party Meeting
  6. Feeding Bristol
  7. Lifecycle crowdfunder
  8. Our local Food Bank
  9. Bristol Libraries Innovation Fund
  10. Jacob’s Well Hub
  11. Ashton Court Mansion
  12. The Climate and our Community
  13. Clifton Climate Action
  14. Chocolate Path update
  15. Bristol Museums


 1. Cumberland Basin News.  The Advisory Group recently held its second meeting. The most important item out of this is a commitment to engage with as many groups as possible, resident, community, business, social, recreational and any others we can think of. To that end the idea which some of you may have picked up that there was going to be a second, so called, Reference Group, is not really the case. It is going to become, we hope, a reference list of organisations that members of the Advisory Group can engage with to begin a real community engagement process on this very significant and important plan. We would be very grateful for any ideas that you may have as to organisations that should be consulted. We can think of many but we might miss some. Please help us with your ideas. [email protected] In case you missed it the Arup report to BCC is here

The other important commitment at this stage is to develop an exclusive space on the City Council website for the Western Harbour plan process. We will let you know as soon as that is live.

2. Hotwells Panto. The 40th Hotwells Panto, based on “the Little Mermaid” will take place from Wednesday-Saturday 11th-14th March 2020. The read through and casting will be held on 30th December at 7.30pm at Holy Trinity. The first rehearsal is on January 6th and every Tuesday at 8pm. The dress rehearsals are Sunday March 1st and Sunday March 8th at Hope Chapel at 1pm.
If you would like to take part, either on stage or backstage, or help with scenery or costume-making come along to the read through or email our producer, Amanda Webb [email protected]

3. General Election Polling station changes.  We are sure you are aware by now of the General Election called for December 12th. Please note that the polling station for the Hotwells & Harbourside polling district of Spike Island (HOHD) will move from Spike Island Arts Centre, into Create Centre at B Bond.

4. Hotwell Road Bus Stop change. We are sorry we did not get this into an earlier bulletin. The new stop outside Hillsborough flats has made the stop in the lay-by opposite Dowry Square as well as the stop at the bottom of Ambra Vale redundant. We hope that this change will make things more convenient for most people. This change was in fact consulted upon in 2017, but now feels rather lost in the mist of time! Interestingly, the 2017 consultation also included creating a bus lane all along Hotwells Road to join up with Anchor Road but this is being shelved for now. If you think that this is something we should pursue to get brought back into active consideration please let us know.

5. Labour Party Meeting. As most of you know this had to be cancelled at very short notice due to the election, despite all the efforts of the local Labour Party to check that it could go ahead. We understand that efforts are being made to reconvene this in the New Year and we will do our best to advertise it when we have details.

6. Feeding Bristol.  Bristol City Council are supporting the charity Feeding Bristol by becoming a collection point for people in the city to donate food to make sure that others do not go hungry this festive season. Food collected will be mainly used to prepare free Christmas food hampers for those in need. For the Christmas campaign, Feeding Bristol would like to provide treats and luxury items including: Christmas biscuits and cakes, Christmas chocolates, Mince pies and Christmas pudding, Dried fruits and nuts, Tinned ham and Sponge puddings. The food will be managed and distributed by FareShare South West to local community organisations and children centres in time for Christmas. Donations can be made at City Hall between now and Dec 12th. More information at and

7. Life Cycle crowdfunder.  Bristol charity Life Cycle UK has launched its first crowdfunder campaign. Life Cycle hope to raise £6,000 to help with a move into Bristol Prison’s new education block, where Life Cycle will train prisoners as Bike Mechanics so they can build a brighter future after release. By donating to their Crowdfunder before 15th December 2019, anyone can contribute towards the rehabilitation of prisoners in Bristol and the South West. More information and how to donate can be found at

8. Our local Food Bank. If you, or someone you know, should be in need of the services of a foodbank then it is probably best to contact [email protected] or phone 07856 021365. The foodbank has a weekly session at Hope Chapel on Wednesdays 9.30am to 12.30pm. Details of how you can give help, contribute items etc. can be found at

 9. Bristol Libraries Innovation Fund.  Do you have ideas for your local library? If so you may be able to assist in getting money for the library by applying, or assisting in an application for the Bristol Libraries Innovation Fund. All the information you need for this can be found at

10. Jacob’s Well Hub. Judy Goldsmith who has played an important role in the success of the Hub has moved to Oxford. We wish her well. You can follow all the Hub’s activities at

11. Ashton Court Mansion. We understand that there may be rumours going around about the Mansion which need dispelling. The Council are planning to dispose of the Mansion on a long term lease. It has NOT been sold. Agents have not yet been appointed. It is expected that agents will be appointed early in the New Year and then things will move on from there. There is a lot of work to do in the meanwhile but we will try and keep you posted with what is happening.

12. The Climate and our Community. Bristol’s communities are invited to help shape the conversation on climate change and climate change migration. Conference to be held at City Hall Tuesday 10th December 10am to 1pm. To Reserve your place on Eventbrite, search The Climate & Our Community Email:[email protected] If anyone who attends wants to give some feedback that would be good.

13. Clifton Climate Action. Last meeting of 2019 has had to be changed because of the election. The meeting will now be held at 7.30 on Thursday 5th December. Subject “Why we need trees”. More information is at

14. Chocolate Path update. We learn that BCC recently decided to spend the full £5.5m necessary to shore up the 80m stretch of bank (with a bored piled concrete retaining wall), and to use the opportunity to do extra flood protection. Apparently  the works are expected to run 2020- 2022 . More information at

15. Bristol Museums. Wild Life Photographer of the Year is back again at the M Shed until May 2020. Yoko Ono films are showing at the Georgian House till the end of December. More information at

November 2019 Bulletin 49

Welcome to this month’s e-newsletter for HCCA, sharing community news from Hotwells, Cliftonwood, Spike Island and wider Bristol. If you wish to contribute to our next bulletin, please send us a short paragraph and link/s where relevant by 30th November. We would always be very happy to hear from you.   Visit our website for more!

In this issue:

  2. Cumberland Basin News
  3. Labour Party Meeting
  4. General Election Hustings
  5. Clifton Climate Action
  6. Clifton Village Literary Festival
  7. Redland Library
  8. The Arc (Not Noah’s)
  9. Can Do Bristol
  10. Bristol’s proposed Clean Air Plan
  11. Consultation on Council Tax
  12. Bristol wins award
  13. Crime prevention
  14. Do you believe in Magic?
  15. Art for Nature
  16. For Foodies

1. HCCA AGM.  The Community Association AGM will be held on 11th November 7.30pm Holy Trinity Hotwells. The business meeting will be followed by 2 films about Bristol. – How the Floating Harbour might have been if they had built on it and 26 short pieces – Bristol from A-Z.  All welcome. Come and hear what we are trying to do for the Community and take your chance to offer suggestions for improving life in the area.

2. Cumberland Basin News.  New information has now been published in the Cabinet papers for 5th November This seems to include all the options that the Consultants Arup looked at, although we only got a chance to comment on 2 of them and a hybrid option.

Since our last bulletin our Chairman, Dennis, who also chairs the Cumberland Basin Stakeholder Group, has been invited by the Mayor to be part of an Advisory Board on the whole issue of the potential development of “Western Harbour”. It remains to be seen exactly how the activities of this group will effect what happens next. More may be evident after the Cabinet meeting on the 5th. If there is enough news on this to warrant a special bulletin then we will publish one. Until that time we will try and keep you up to date here.

3. Labour Party Meeting. Related to the above there will be a meeting for local residents on 13th November at 6pm in Holy Trinity Church where Marvin Rees will talk on “The Future of Hotwells and Harbourside”. The invite says “What would you like to see in our neighbourhood? A simpler road system? Less pollution? Reduced traffic? Family homes? More open space? What do you want to preserve? What if anything do you want to change?” So this is a chance hear first- hand about, and possibly to influence, the changes being talked about.

4. General Election Hustings. Your CA intends to try and hold a hustings, as we have done before. As we will not be able to firm this up before publication we will send a special bulletin with details when they are known. We are looking for dates in weeks commencing 18 and 25th November and 2nd December. More soon.

5. Clifton Climate Action.  The autumn series of talks continues with “Recycling in Clifton – Can we boost it?” Gwen Frost, Head of innovation and sustainability at Bristol Waste will advise you. 7.30pm Thursday 14th November Clifton Library. Also, same time on 28th November “The benefits of LEDs”. More from

6. Clifton Village Literary Festival. Friday 15th to Sunday 17th November. A weekend full of various talks, workshops, music, poetry and lively discussion. Check out the details here There’s lots for everyone. This is also a chance to support your local library.

7. Redland Library. Thursday 14th November 7pm Jane Duffus will talk about her second volume of “The Women who built Bristol. More information at

8. The Arc (Not Noah’s). A new possibility for seeing some of the city from the air. We do not know the status of this plan but maybe it will fly! Looks like it could be fun. For more see

9. Can Do Bristol. Can Do Bristol is a web platform which has been developed by Bristol City Council in partnership with a range of community organisations representing different localities/equality groups in the city. It has been set up to help support social and community action all across the city of Bristol. It hopes to help connect people, groups and communities together. It plans to create opportunities for people to connect, promote and sign up for volunteering, offer chances to swap time and skills with a time-banking feature and promote other community initiatives. See more at

10. Bristol’s proposed Clean Air Plan. BCC Cabinet will be considering a proposed Clean Air Plan on 5th November. The main parts of the plan are, a charging zone for all diesel taxis, buses, hgvs and vans that do not have Euro 6 engines and a complete ban on all diesel cars (and diesel camper vans) in a central area between the hours of 7am and 3pm. Details can be found here If you want to see what the cabinet papers are like go to

11. Consultation on Council Tax. Consultation on next year’s Council Tax rate is now open and can be found at Options seem to be no change, which presumably must result in reduced services, 2% increase or the latter plus an additional 2% for adult social care.


12. Bristol wins award.  Bristol City Council’s backing for projects that help the city achieve its carbon neutral targets has been recognised nationally at the Community Energy Awards 2019. For more information on the council's energy projects visit:


13. Crime prevention. We are hoping you have not been the victim of crime in the area, but we are very aware that crime, in particular theft (vehicle and other) and burglary are still regular occurrences in the area. More information on protecting yourself against crime can be found at and  and  Information about neighbourhood and community issues can be found on the BCC website at


14. Do you believe in Magic? New exhibition at Bristol Museum and Art Gallery. Now till April 2020. From ancient uses of witchcraft, to belief in the power of gods and ancestors, this exhibition explores the complex intersection between magic, science and religion. More information at about this and all other exhibitions at our museums.


15. Art for Nature.  Hurry only a few days left! Till Friday 8th November at the CREATE Centre. An art exhibition featuring donated artwork on the theme of the natural world from over thirty professional artists. 100% of proceeds go to the environmental charity; World Land Trust. More information about the Trust here


16. For Foodies. Bristol Food Network has a variety of events in November which can be found here


Read more
2 reactions Share

Bees, Butterflies and Play- adapting 1960s design to a 21st century city

boats pp
Watching the boats by Anna Wilson

Sylvia Crowe designed the Cumberland Piazza as part of a much bigger landscaped scheme covering all the Ashton and Hotwells flyover. She explored many ideas about play and leisure that were cutting edge in the 1960s. One of the ideas for the Piazza was that people could sit and watch the boats coming in and out of Bristol Harbour. there were so many things she couldn't have known about that have arisen as major concerns in the intervening years. Although we can still watch the boats come and go from our new pocket park, we often watch through a haze of speeding cars- who knew in the 1960s that traffic levels would quadruple within 50 years?

Read more
Add your reaction Share