Blue Plaque Scheme

The award of Blue Plaques in Bristol is now organized by the Bristol Civic Society through its Blue Plaque Panel. Use the following link for information about how the scheme is run and how you can nominate sites for an award.

Redmaids High School

RedmaidsBlue plaques celebrate Votes for Women

We’ve reached a landmark anniversary with our plaques. The twentieth was unveiled on 8 March at Redmaids High School. Actually, so was the nineteenth: between them they made a pigeon pair. The plaques honoured three women, two of whom were sisters, and each major players in the suffrage movement locally. The research was complicated because there were various societies carrying the torch for women’s rights and we are keen to ensure accuracy on plaques.


Aled Richards Trust and Terrence Higgins Trust

HIV TrustsBristol Civic Society’s eighteenth plaque was unveiled on 1 December 2017 at 8 West Street, Old Market. The plaque is on the building which was, for 25 years (1992‒2017), the home of the Aled Richards Trust/Terrence Higgins Trust. In the words of the plaque, the building and the organisation was “at the heart of Bristol’s response to the HIV epidemic” and was “a place of support and friendship for people living with HIV”. Why two organisations on one plaque? Aled Richards Trust was a Bristol-based charity which merged with the national Terrence Higgins Trust in 2000.


Hardy Falconer Parsons

Hardy Parsons30 June 1897 ‒ 21 August 1917

Durdham Downs, 8 November 1917: Hardy Parsons’ father was presented with his son's posthumous Victoria Cross by King George V. Exactly one hundred years later, a plaque was unveiled in Salisbury Road, Redland to honour this brave young hero of World War I.

Around 100 people attended the commemorative event, including some distinguished guests: Cllr Lesley Alexander, Lord Mayor; Colonel Andrew Flint, Deputy Lord-Lieutenant for the County and City of Bristol; The Very Revd Dr David Hoyle, Dean of Bristol; Major General Robin Grist, CB OBE; Brigadier James Daniel, Lt Col Rupert Clements and cadets of Bristol University Officer Training Corps.


Dame Katharine Furse

Katharine FurseA Blue Plaque was unveiled on 7 September to Dame Katharine Furse. The plaque celebrates the life of this inspiring, if previously locally unknown, woman. The daughter of literary critic and poet John Addington Symonds, Katharine was born in Clifton Hill House in 1875. She joined the British Red Cross Voluntary Aid Detachment, becoming Commandant and leading the first VAD Unit sent to France in 1914. She resigned, frustrated that nurses did not have the power to introduce reforms that they knew from their first-hand knowledge were necessary. But her organisational capabilities were recognised by the Navy. In 1917 she was asked to lead a new women’s naval auxiliary. This became the Women’s Royal Naval Service, better known as the Wrens (WRNS). In the inter-war years she set up the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts and was Director of its World Bureau.


Shirehampton Masonic Lodges

Shirehampton masonic lodgeThe George Inn, Shirehampton
A plaque (picture on the right) was unveiled in July to commemorate the inaugural meeting on 24 June 1791 of the Masonic Lodge of Jehosaphat.

The Lamplighters, Shirehampton
A plaque was unveiled in July to commemorate the inaugural meeting on 24 June 1795 of Bristol Freemasons celebrating the feast of St John the Baptist.

Location of the Shirehampton Plaques on Google maps.

Find out more about the Blue Plaque scheme.

Rummer Inn

Rummer Lodge plaqueAn iconic tavern in the heart of our city, within a stone’s throw of the ancient crossroads – Corn/Wine/High and Broad Streets, where Bristol’s High Cross once stood. On 24 June, at the Rummer Inn in All Saints’ Lane, a plaque honouring an historic occasion was unveiled.

The inaugural meeting of Freemasons took place on 12 November 1735 in the older part of the Rummer Inn. In 1741 a comprehensive scheme to build the Corn Exchange was announced. The pub was partly rebuilt and redesigned by John Wood the Elder, the architect of the Exchange, in 1743. Its yard became part of a new thoroughfare, All Saints’ Lane. It is Wood’s façade, contemporary with the Exchange’s Palladian elevations, that we see today.


Shakespeare public house

Shakespeare PlaqueA blue plaque has been unveiled on the Shakespeare public house in Prince Street, close by the quays. It embellishes a handsome rank of grade II*-listed houses of 1725; the middle one was converted to a pub around fifty years later. And it was in 1784 that the Shakespeare inn held a meeting of the Beaufort Lodge of Freemasons. John Hopkins, the husband of landlady Hannah, was a freemason. The Lodge’s annals record: 'it used to be largely frequented by captains and officers of merchant ships. It was kept very select and no common sailor or dock labourer would have presumed to enter without instructions from his superiors.'


Richard Gregory

Richard GregoryProfessor Richard Gregory, neuropsychologist and founder of the Exploratory, forerunner of At-Bristol

On 10 May a leading expert on illusions was honoured with a blue plaque. Professor Richard Gregory was a neuroscientist who spent more than fifty years investigating how our eyes and brain work together to perceive the world around us. He used optical illusions as research tools to investigate the way our brains process images.


William Herapath

Herapath groupWilliam Herapath (1796‒1868)

On 20 February an unveiling took place at the Packhorse Inn, on the Lawrence Hill railway bridge at Church Road. The plaque tells a fascinating story: William Herapath was the son of the publican and grew up here in the early years of the nineteenth century. He took over the running of the pub and the task of fermenting his beer whetted his interest in chemistry. He went on to develop an impressive CV, become a founder member and fellow of the Chemical Society of London, professor of chemistry and toxicology at the Bristol Medical School and vice-president of the Bristol Political Union.


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