Pictures of a Run-down Bristol in the 1970s

In the post-war years, far more destruction was done, far more unforgivably, to the fabric of cities, such as Bristol, by their own officials than was ever inflicted by the Luftwaffe.

Bristol

Friday 29th August 1980. Bonded Warehouse

Stephen Dowle, who took these fascinating photographs, writes in his book Bristol A Portrait 1970-1982 that at one time it was a ‘common experience to turn a corner offend discover that part of one’s accustomed surroundings had become a wasteland of mud and trenches. Familiar streetscapes vanished overnight, leaving a disorientating aerial void.”

In the post-war years, far more destruction was done, far more unforgivably, to the fabric of cities, such as Bristol, by their own officials than was ever inflicted by the Luftwaffe.

Stephen Dowle continues: ‘planners and architects suddenly looked around at their creation: they saw vandalised tower blocks, rain-streaked concrete, hooligan-frequented precincts, aggregate panels, defaced subways, dead expanses of tinted glass, nonsense sculpture and rain-lashed walkways. A veil fell from the their eyes. “What have we done?’ They asked themselves.”

Bristol

Barton Hill, Bristol, 1974. Hanover Street, off Avonvale Road, where Barton Hill merges into Redfield

Bristol

Victoria Street, Bristol, 1974.

Bristol

Narrow Lane is a footpath running around the backs of the houses from Riviera Crescent to Seymour Road, Staple Hill March 1974

Bristol

Thursday 6th June 1974 Temple Gate

Bristol

Saturday 20th April 1974 Metropole Cinema

Bristol

Station Road into Chiphouse Road October 1976

Bristol

Gaumont Cinemal Baldwin Street Wednesday 17th April 1974,

19th January 1974. Victoria Street

Temple Gate, Bristol, seen on Thursday 6th June 1974.

Buchanan’s Wharf, Bristol, photographed from Welsh Back on Wednesday 23rd July 1975

Wednesday 23rd July 1975. Redcliffe Backs

Buchanan’s Wharf, Bristol, 1975. This building was originally the granary (left) and mill (right) of Messrs Procter & Baker. It was built in 1883.

Redcliff, Bristol, 1975.

Bristol

The Gaumont Cinema, Baldwin Street, Bristol, photographed on Wednesday 17th April 1974.

Bristol

view from Upper Street, Totterdown, Bristol, taken on Sunday 3rd February 1974.

Bristol

5th December 1982 Rupert Street

Upper Maudlin Street, Bristol, 1974.

Bristol

Lewins Mead, Bristol, 1980. By Saturday 17th May 1980, the Greyfriars office development had filled the horizon and obliterated all traces of the old Lewins Mead.

Bristol

Old Market Street, April 1979

BRISTOL

Bathurst Hotel Friday 29th August 1980. Not long before, the Garricks pub had been known as the Bathurst Hotel. Soon afterwards it became The Smugglers and it is now known as the Louisiana

BRISTOL

The original route out of Bristol for trains going north was by way of Fishponds and Mangotsfield. The locomotive shed which serviced the Bristol end of this traffic was Barrow Road September 1974

Bristol

Station Avenue was the turning at the side of Fishponds Library. On Tuesday 28th October 1975 most of the houses were empty and bricked up ready for demolition.

BRISTOL

Wednesday 17th April 1974. The Garrick’s Head pub is soon to go and the CWS building is already coming down.

Bristol A Portrait 1970-1982 by Stephen Dowle