I always love standing under the Cumberland Basin swingbridge, and listening to the vehicles driving overhead. That clunk-CLUNK as they hit the swinging bridge is really satisfying – and I love looking at the bridge mechanics.
Last week I was up in Filton, recording the podcast with the Bristol Avon Rivers Trust, and afterwards, since I was up in that neighbourhood, I walked down through the Stoke Park Estate, and along the Frome.
Stoke Park was beautiful – completely empty on this hot, summer day, with the sounds of crickets, birdsong, ‘planes overhead, and the M32 thrumming in the distance. It’s somewhere I’ve only been once before, and I really should find out more about it, especially the strange ruins.
I have a thing about being underneath roads, so in the tunnel under the motorway, I recorded the sounds – under, and then next to it:
After Stoke Park, I went down to the Frome, starting at the weir at Broom Hill. Clambering over the sluicegate to stand on the end of the weir, I put my disposable underwater film camera into the weir, for different views of it. I love these three especially
I always love the fish in the Harbour – from spotting big fish, to the shoals of tiny fish-lets that are in the shallowest parts of the Harbour on the sunny days, flashing silver as they dart in shoals. I took this photo, which was a fantastic failure, but when I borrowed my friend Tim’s GoPro, one of my goals was to get some films.
This was a beautiful, mellow, sunny day. I’d met my friend Matt Gibson for coffee at the Underfall Yard, and our walk lasted about 2 minutes before we stopped by the western jetty and slipway by the Nova Scotia.
On Tuesday I was over in St Werburghs, and I went home via Mina Road Park, which always fascinates me. From the road it looks like a pretty nondescript urban park, albeit with the incredible iron urinal – but it has a river running through it, Horfield Brook.
It’s a short stretch, but it’s been looked after, with viewing platforms, planting and decorative bridges. At the north-west corner of the park it disappears into the old factory site, and there’s a pair of concrete slabs in the water, I guess to control the flow a little, and it sounds like this:
I often walk along the River and the Harbour with my partner – it’s not the quickest way to town from home, but it’s a diversion to take photos and enjoy the city, and it usually adds layers of interest and fun to days that would otherwise be about chores… except sometimes it doesn’t.