Who are we and what do we do?

Bristol Civic Society is an independent, voluntary organisation that exists to improve Bristol’s built environment and celebrate its heritage. We have existed as a society for over 100 years.

Through our working groups, we seek to influence the development of major sites, and new planning and transport policy. And we monitor planning applications. New group members are always welcome. 

Our Manifesto for Bristol [PDF] describes some key high-level principles that unite us when we work to make Bristol a better place.

We put on a varied events programme. In addition to this website, we publish Better Bristol (in the spring and autumn each year) and send out (by email) regular e-bulletins and event notifications. We are an active and friendly organisation with over 400 members from all walks of life.

Forthcoming Events

In line with the Government's recommendations on social distancing, Bristol Civic Society events are cancelled for the foreseeable future. Refunds have been issued. When we have new dates, we’ll let those who booked know ahead of the rest of the membership so that they can retain their places. The 2020 Annual Design Awards scheme is cancelled - all nominations are taken forward to 2021.

Civic Voice is arranging interesting on-line seminars. Details on our events page.

Latest Posts

Planning Issues

Little Paradise update: June 2020

Planning Issues

Caravan Club Site, Cumberland Road

Planning Issues

East Street vision

Waterfront Place

Waterfront Place

Planning Issues /
The Society supports the mix of uses in proposals for Waterfront Place but regrets that it cannot support the scheme currently proposed.
Civic Voice webinar: The reality behind the housing crisis: Thursday 14th May, 12.30

Civic Voice webinar: The reality behind the housing crisis: Thursday 14th May, 12.30

Past Events /
The second in a series of Civic Voice ‘In Conversations’ with the civic movement, this webinar will explore the new book on the housing crisis by Bob Colenutt.
Civic Voice webinar: building a better post COVID-19: Wednesday 20th May, 16.00

Civic Voice webinar: building a better post COVID-19: Wednesday 20th May, 16.00

Past Events /
The third in a series of Civic Voice ‘In Conversations’ with the civic movement, this webinar will explore how it will be possible to ‘build better and beautifully’ post COVID-19 when Government thinking will be focused on planning for economic recovery.
Old Rail Depot, Clanage Road

Old Rail Depot, Clanage Road

Planning Issues /
The Society does not support Vistry Partnership’s current proposal to redevelop a former railway maintenance depot to build 253 new homes.
Clarke Street car park development

Clarke Street car park development

Planning Issues /
The Society supports this fifth scheme by Sydney Freed (Holdings) that adopts the Bedminster Green Framework’s recommendations.
St Michaels - April 2020 update

St Michaels – April 2020 update

It is heartening to report on the phoenix arising from the ashes of St. Michael’s! Some three and a half years on from that disastrous fire there is significant new life.
Temple-Meads-Station

Emerging plans for Temple Meads Station

Planning Issues /
After many years of waiting, there now seems to be some momentum towards specific plans for Temple Meads station. Alan Morris reports.
Bus stop and car

Update on local transport policy

Planning Issues /
It can be difficult to get an overall picture of current transport policy in the city and sub-region. This is a summary of recent announcements, consultations and decisions.
New Temple Meads Campus: April 2020 update.

New Temple Meads Campus: April 2020 update.

Planning Issues /
Bristol University now has full planning permission to develop the whole of its new Temple Meads Campus.
Former Soapworks Building: April 2020 update

Former Soapworks Building: April 2020 update

Planning Issues /
An update on the First Base proposal to redevelop the site of the former Gardiner Haskins Homecentre between Old Bread Street and Straight Street, Old Market.
Expert view on high-rise Bristol

Expert view on high-rise Bristol

“Should Bristol become a high rise city?” The conclusion of the three expert speakers at the Bristol Civic Society’s March 5 event was an unambiguous no. Tall buildings are bad for the environment, and bad for happiness.
Land at Home Gardens Redland Hill

Land at Home Gardens Redland Hill

Planning Issues /
The Society supports the principle of an outline planning application to build up to 60 residential units and flexible office accommodation at the top of Blackboy Hill.