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10 Things You Didn’t Know About Bristol Roller Derby



bristol roller derby team

10 things you didn’t know about Bristol Roller Derby

If you’ve seen the 2009 film Whip It starring Ellen Page, you might think you know all there is to know about roller derby, but there’s a lot more to it and you might even fancy putting a pair of skates on yourself.

1. What is roller derby?

bristol roller derby

C. Jason Ruffell

It’s a full-contact sport played on quad roller skates. Participants must wear full protective gear, including a mouth guard. It’s predominantly played by women, but the number of men’s teams is growing rapidly too.

2. What are the rules?

roller derby fall

C Jason Ruffell

So there are five people from each team on the track at any one time. There’s one jammer from each team, that’s the one with the star on their helmet, and they can score points. There are also four blockers, they try to stop the other team scoring points. The jammer has to get through ‘the pack’, made up of both team’s blockers, before they can score points. Then, they get a point for every member of the opposite team that they pass. Easy, right?

3. It’s a growing sport

roller derby talk

C Jason Ruffell

It’s the fastest growing female sport, and England came second in the World Cup last year, losing to America in the final.

4. So what’s Bristol Roller Derby?

bristol roller derby contact

C. Ockendon-Powell Images

The local team in Bristol. They train on Mondays, Wednesdays and Sundays. They have women’s A and B teams and a men’s team. They turn six years old in May and retain three of their founding members.

5. They’re pretty good

bristol roller derby team

C. Ockendon-Powell Images

The women’s A team rank 26th in the whole of Europe.

6. You can play too


C. Vincent Le Goascoz

There’s a drop in session every Thursday, 6-8 at Ashton Park Sports Centre. You can borrow all the kit and they’ll teach you everything you need to know to pass your minimum skills, a list of approved skills needed before you can play.

7. And you can play if you’re a man too

roller derby men

C. Jennifer Rollason Photography

Bristol Roller Derby Men train on Sundays, 2-4, or you can go to the drop in session and once you’ve passed minimum skills they train at the same time as the rest of the team

8. People play under an alias

hands in dark

C. Mark Gilbert

Players choose a new name to play under. It’s usually a play on words. Often skaters find they have a different personality on track, which can help their confidence in their day-to-day lives too.

9. They have a charity partner

hands in

C. Ockendon-Powell Images

This year they’re supporting the Southmead Project, a charity providing free therapeutic and practical support to adults who were abused as children and have turned to drugs, alcohol and other ways of self-harming as a consequence of that trauma. The team raise money at their home games and by doing fund-raising activities.

10. You can go and watch their next home games

bristol roller derby game

It’s on the 10 April. You can buy a ticket here:

That’s roller derby in a nutshell. You can find more details about BRD by searching on Facebook or going to their website:



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Things To Do

Where To Celebrate Burns Night In Bristol



Burns Night in Bristol

Burns Night, probably one of the best nights of the year. Why? Whisky, reciting poetry loudly and haggis! OK, not everyone’s cup of tea but if it’s good enough for the Scots then we will try and piggy back on it anyway we can!

Luckily for us, there are loads of great places in Bristol that are putting on Burns Night evenings so that we can get involved. Here are just some that we have seen…

Burns Night Whisky Club at Hyde & Co

The grandfathers of the hidden cocktail bar, Hyde & Co are of course championing an event that lets them show of their whisky knowledge and cocktail mastery. They will be joined by Max Helm, spirit ambassador for Glenmorangie, and his team, who’ll be on hand to guide you through a delicious tasting of their range of Scotch whiskies, and the exceptionally talented team at Hyde will be showcasing their skills creating a delicious whisky cocktail or two.

Tickets are £25 and include a whisky cocktail on arrival, a tutored tasting of the Glenmorangie range and some light nibbles, courtesy of The Ox restaurant (veggie options will be available).

Burns Night At The Canteen

Perhaps you want more of a knees up to celebrate Burns night? Well, the Canteen have just the thing for you! Or as they say….

“If you’re going to celebrate Scotland’s greatest poet then you definitely need the kind of full-blooded roots music that Fitty Gomesh make. Ripsnorting traditional folk dance tunes from the Celtic fringes all cranked up to get you stripping the willow until you can strip no more.”

Sounds marvelous! They will also have a Scottish menu for you, check out the event here:

Murder Mystery, A Burns Night Special at the Bristol Museum

Hold the phone! A murder Mystery Burns Night special, where do we sign up!? Good work Bristol Museum who will be hosting this event at the Winterstoke and Wills Hall at Bristol Museum with whisky cocktail on arrival and live bagpiper to pipe in the Haggis. There will be a three course Scottish themed dinner with coffee and petit fours with DJ and disco until 1am and a prize for the winning team. Tickets are £49.95 per person and the event runs on the 26th and 27th

Burns Night Supper at the Milk Thistle

Little, although not in size, brothers of Hyde & Co, The Milk Thistle are also celebrating Burns Night but with a supper in their intimate attic space- which not many people get to see!

For £55 you can join them for a night of traditional Scottish food, cooked by the chefs from The Ox Bristol, matched with a specially created Whisky cocktail flight and tastings of several exceptional whiskies from the fine folk at Glen Grant.

Stay At Home With Whisky

Because Robert Burns would have wanted you to! Of course, having a think of the old Bard and reading some of his poetry on this day would also be an apt celebration!



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Bristol Pub Quizzes



bristol pub quizzes

It’s time for a good old fashioned Bristol pub quiz

There are endless places where you can find some good Bristol pub quizzes. Fridays and Saturdays are unlikely but here are loads of places Sunday – Thursday.

Monday Bristol Pub Quizzes

Tuesday Bristol Pub Quizzes

Wednesday Bristol Pub Quizzes

Thursday Bristol Pub Quizzes

Sunday Bristol Pub Quizzes


Blankety Quiz – Found across Bristol and voted the best pub quiz in Bristol

Got any that we’ve missed? Pop them in the comments below.



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Gloucester Road

The Grecian Catches On Fire





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