12 Photos Of Bristol Centre Throughout The Years

Changing face of Bristol’s centre

1. Back in the late 1800s & early 1900s when the trams still ran it was known as the ‘Tramway Centre’

bristol centre 1800S
Via Paul Townsend

2. The river Frome being filled in back in 1893

river frome filled in
Via Paul Townsend

3. In 1911 with the Frome river still running

Bristol centre 1911
Via Paul Townsend

4. Work starts in 1936 on creating new roads through the centre

Bristol centre 1936
Via Paul Townsend

5. Here in 1941 machinery dig up the Bristol centre to provide a pedestrian area

bristol centre in 1941
Via Paul Townsend

6. In 1946 when it was being used as a car park

bristol centre
Via Paul Townsend

7. In the 1950s it becomes known as the ‘Centre Gardens’

Bristol centre in the 1950s
Via Paul Townsend

8. During the Queen’s coronation in 1953

Bristol centre in 1953
Via Paul Townsend

9. There was little traffic back in 1957

Bristol centre in 1957
Via Paul Townsend

10. Much more colourful in 1967

bristol centre in 1967
Via Paul Townsend

11. Even more colourful in the 1970s

Bristol centre 1970s
Via Paul Townsend

12. 1999 more developments start taking shape

bristol centre in 1999
Via Paul Townsend

Will the future changes currently being worked on restore some of the Bristol centre’s lost beauty?

All photos by the brilliant Bristol historian Paul Townsend. You can learn more about the Bristol centre’s history by checking out this album.



Sam Gillies

The author Sam Gillies

The founder and editor of Bristol. Purveyor of numerous Bristol lists, videos and Instagram stories.