Why move to Bristol?
The ingenuity, diversity and building continue today with the regeneration of the City Centre and Harbourside. The city offers many art and social events and venues as well as the renowned shopping outlet Cabot Circus housing the likes of Harvey Nichols and House of Fraser. As with any other major city, Bristol enjoys strong transport links with the rest of the UK and Europe thanks to its airport and large train station. There is much to see and do in Bristol, including a range of museums, galleries, fine dining restaurants, bars and cafes.
A little bit of history
Bristol has a lengthy history: the city was given a royal charter in 1155 and up until the 18th century it was one of Britain’s top three cities. The city is most famous as the starting place for exploration of the New World, with many ships leaving the harbours bound for the Americas. Through the 18th and 19th centuries the city grew at pace, due to shipping and later the advent of the railway. Victorian engineer Isambard Kingdom Brunel designed the Great Western Railway line linking Bristol to London, as well as the magnificent Clifton Suspension Bridge. Much of the city was destroyed during the wars, and rebuilt in the 1960s and 70s, though many of its period buildings remain.
Architecture and property
Bristol continues to be a popular choice for those relocating from London and other major UK cities and internationally. Properties range from ultra-modern city apartments on the waterfront, period conversions through to Victorian and Georgian townhouses and outer town country estates. Bristol has a great many listed buildings, including 51 Grade I listed and over 4,000 Grade II and Grade II* listed, from medieval to modern. A particularly popular area is Clifton Village, where our office is based, which is primarily Georgian and Victorian properties.
Shopping and amenities
From big brand names to independent boutiques, shopping in Bristol is excellent. The regenerated city centre is occupied by the fabulous Cabot Circus development, with shops, restaurants and department stores such as Harvey Nichols, while on the outskirts of the city the Cribbs Causeway retail park has a John Lewis, a huge covered mall and superstore shopping. For boutiques, head to Clifton Village where there are independent shops, delicatessens and charming cafes. Bristol also has a zoo, excellent leisure facilities including a number of golf courses and
Nightlife in Bristol is excellent, with a huge number of restaurants and venues to choose from, from low-key pubs to lively nightclubs. There are national brand name restaurants in Cabot Circus while Park Street is the place to go for a vibrant pub scene. The city also has a variety of theatres and music venues, including the famous Colston Hall (now the Bristol Beacon), which also serves as a gallery and community space. Bristol’s independent pubs and restaurants are one of its key highlights: The Lazy Dog on Gloucester Road is a local’s favourite for its range of local produce and excellent ales, while the Coronation Tap in Clifton offers great local cider tastings. The Milk Thistle on Colston Road offers four floors of Prohibition-themed rooms and hosts live music and events.
There are a number of green spaces within the city of Bristol and on its outskirts. Bristol has the benefit of being bordered by the Avon Green Belt to the south, extending into the villages beyond. Within the city itself, there is excellent walking at Clifton Downs and Leigh Woods, the latter owned by the National Trust, Stoke Park Estate, and Blaize Castle. Bristol has previously been ranked as Britain’s greenest city (based on quality of life, approach to climate change and environmental performance), and has also been named by The Sunday Times as the best city in Britain in which to live.
Schools in Bristol run the full range, from high-performing independent schools to state primary schools. Recommended fee-paying establishments include Clifton College, Clifton High School and Badminton School. In the state sector, Redland Green, Bristol Cathedral Choir School and Bristol Grammar School all offer very high standards of education and facilities. The city is also home to two excellent universities, Bristol University and the University of the West of England (UWE).
Commuting in Bristol and further afield is excellent, whether you travel by road, rail or air. Trains to London Paddington run via Bristol Temple Meads, with fast commuter services taking about one hour and 40 minutes. Temple Meads also serves the South West of England. Bristol is linked by several motorways including the M32, M5 and M4, the latter travelling east to the M25 and the wider motorway network. The A4 and A4174 join the cities of Bath and Bristol. Bristol Airport is about 8 miles outside the city and has flights to a wide choice of domestic and international destinations. There is a direct bus from the city centre.