- Bedminster, Bristol
infobox UK place
country = England
static_image_caption= Boundaries of the city council ward.
population = 10,758 [cite web | title=Bedminster | work=2001 Census Ward Information Sheet | url=http://www.bristol.gov.uk/WardFinder/pdfs/bedminster-wis.pdf | accessdate=2007-02-20]
region= South West England
constituency_westminster= Bristol South
postcode_district = BS
Bedminster is the name of both a council ward in
Bristol, England, and an area of the city that falls mostly within that ward.
The ward contains the areas of Bedminster and Ashton Vale, and one railway station,
Parson Street railway station. There is also a Bedminster railway station, but this lies outside the Bedminster ward in Windmill Hill.
Areas in the council ward
Bedminster lies to the south of the city centre and was once a small
townin Somerset. It is known for having a large Italian population, mainly descendents of the Italian immigration after the Second World War.
The town's origins seem to be Roman, centred around the present East Street and West Street. The
Malagoriver, which runs through Bedminster to join the Avon, was an early Christianplace for baptisms - the old word for which, "beydd" may be the origin of Bedminster’s name.
The Royal Manor of Bedminster comprised all the land south of the Avon, from the
Avon Gorgeto Brislington, and in the Domesday Bookhad 25 villeins, 3 slaves and 27 smallholders. In 1154 it was given to the Lords of Berkeley, who kept it for 300 years. In 1605 it was purchased by the Smythfamily of Ashton Courtwho remained the Lords of the Manoruntil the 19th century.
In 1644, during the
English Civil War, Bedminster was sacked by Prince Rupert. When John Wesleypreached there in the 1760s, it was a sprawling, decayed market town, with orchards next to brick works, rope walks and the beginnings of a mining industry.
coal mininghad been done on a small scale since the 1670s, but in 1748 the first shafts were sunk by Sir Jarrit Smyth at South Liberty Lane. By the end of the century there were eighteen coal-pits operating in the Bedminster and Ashton Valecoalfield.
Between 1804 and 1809 the
New Cutwas excavated through the northern part of the parish from Temple Meads to Hotwells, providing a new course for the River Avon, enabling the original course to be held at a constant level so that shipping could stay afloat in Bristol Harbour, now known as the Floating Harbour. In addition to removing the tides, the new cut also helped with reducing silting in the harbour. It is now the boundary between Bedminster and the City centre.The population of Bedminster increased rapidly, from 3,000 in 1801 to 78,000 in 1884, mostly as a result of the coalfield and industries such as smelting, tanneries, glue-works, paint and glass factories. In the 1880s two major employers moved there - E. S. & A. Robinson(paper bag manufacturers) and W. D. & H. O. Wills(cigarette and cigar makers). The population overflowed to Windmill Hill, Totterdown, Southville, the Chessellsand Bedminster Down. During this time, churches, public houses, shops and businesses were built, some of which still survive.
Second World War, Bedminster was one of several areas of Bristol that were heavily bombed during the Bristol Blitz. Post-war town planningrelocated most of the heavy industry to the rural areas to the south of the parish, and new estates grew up in Withywood, Hartcliffeand Highridge. Bedminster declined during the post-war years, but recent redevelopments, a big new supermarketand a pedestrianisation scheme are improving the area. North St (which divides Bedminster from Southville) in particular has undergone huge renovation with the introduction of the Tobacco Factory theatre and bar and dozens of modern shops.
There are four primary schools in Bedminster:
* Holy Cross RC Primary School
* South Street Primary School
* Parson Street Primary School
* Victoria Park Primary School
Ashton Vale is primarily an industrial area of
Bristol, which lies in the Bedminster council ward.
port and recreation
Bedminster is home to many sports teams, including Broad Plain Rugby Club, who play in the Bristol Combination league, and Bedminster Cricket Club, which was founded in 1847 and has historical links with
W. G. Grace, who play in the West of England Premier Leaguelower divisions.
*cite web | title=Bedminster | work=2005 Ward Profile | url=http://www.bristol.gov.uk/WardFinder/pdfs/bedminster-profile.pdf | accessdate=2007-02-20
* [http://www.somerset.gov.uk/archives/Maps/OS62htm/0606.htm Map of Bedminster circa 1900]
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