Blue Plaques

Professor Robin Jarvis reveals the plaque

Robert Southey

On Monday 18 June a plaque was unveiled at Kingsdown Parade to commemorate a celebrated Bristolian, Robert Southey.

Strike up the band at Iles Blue Plaque

John Henry Iles

John Henry Iles was born in Bristol in 1871 and the plaque, at 91 Sommerville Road overlooking St Andrews Park marks his matrimonial home.

Redmaids school girls marching past plaques

Redmaids High School – blue plaques celebrate votes for women

We’ve reached a landmark anniversary with our plaques. The nineteenth and twentieth were unveiled together on 8th March at Redmaids High School.

Sacred clowns by the plaques

Aled Richards Trust & Terrence Higgins Trust

Bristol Civic Society’s eighteenth plaque was unveiled on 1st 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.

Blue Plaque to Hardy Falconer Parsons

Hardy Falconer Parsons

Durdham Downs, 8th November 1917: Hardy Parsons’ father was presented with his son’s posthumous Victoria Cross by King George V. Exactly 100 years later, a plaque was unveiled to honour this brave young hero of World War I.

Katharine Furse Blue Plaque

Dame Katharine Furse

A Blue Plaque was unveiled on 7th September to Dame Katharine Furse. The plaque celebrates the life of this inspiring, if previously locally unknown, woman.

Shirehampton masonic lodge

Shirehampton masonic lodges

Plaques were unveiled in July 2017 to commemorate the inaugural meeting on 24th June 1791 of the Masonic Lodge of Jehosaphat and the inaugural meeting on 24th June 1795 of Bristol Freemasons celebrating the feast of St John the Baptist.

Rummer Lodge plaque

Rummer Inn

An iconic tavern in the heart of our city, within a stone’s throw of ancient crossroads. On 24th June, at the Rummer Inn in All Saints’ Lane, a plaque honouring an historic occasion was unveiled.

Blue plaques issued by Bristol Civic Society

Fancy putting up a blue plaque to some great woman or man who once lived in Bristol? Or to commemorate a building where a signficant event took place years ago? Is there someone in the city’s past who you and your family or friends think deserves more recognition? Then the Civic Society can help. In 2015, BCS took over responsibility for the blue plaques scheme previously run by Bristol City Council and a BCS ‘Blue Plaques Panel’ is now up and running.

There is nothing to stop any group or private individual sticking up a plaque (of any colour) on any building provided the owner agrees. The Civic Society, however, is responsible for Bristol’s ‘official’ blue plaques. This means information is carefully checked; is the person honoured with a plaque genuinely connected with the building or site? Did they live or work there? Were they born there? And do their achievements merit the honour of a plaque?

The Panel has drawn up a set of basic ground rules. Nobody can be nominated, for example, until at least five years have passed since their death, to allow for a more objective assessment of their contribution. Advertising is not permitted and the Panel must approve the design and wording because we have agreed an established ‘house style’ to make sure that all BCS blue plaques are consistent.

The Panel does not itself nominate people for plaques, and nor does the Civic Society have a budget for them. The person or group nominating someone to be honoured must raise the money (currently about £500), provide evidence of connection with the site, secure the owner’s consent and put the case for the nominee’s commemoration. The Panel can advise on research, plaque manufacture, publicity and give tips on how to run a successful unveiling event. (The Lord Mayor may well be able to turn up.)

Society chair Simon Birch says:

“We want to take advantage of people’s enthusiasm for blue plaques by encouraging Bristolians to come forward and nominate men and women connected with the city who have made an impact. They do not have to be national figures. We are just as interested in those who worked tirelessly for their own communities. And they don’t have to be people from the distant past. It is just as important to honour more recent figures, so that the scheme can also reflect Bristol as it is today.”

If you would like to nominate someone for a plaque, please complete an application form and email it to Gordon Young, the Panel’s Convenor, at

Use this link for Blue Plaques unveiled when the scheme was run by Bristol City Council.