History of Bristol
Bristol’s a city of pioneers, engineers, explorers and adventurers – rebellious, restless spirits who changed the world around them. So you’ll be in good company…
- c.950 – Bristol grows into a busy market town.
- 1140 – St Augustine's Abbey is founded (and later becomes known as Bristol Cathedral).
- 1216 – First Bristol mayor is appointed.
- 1373 – King Edward III grants Bristol county status.
- 1497 – John Cabot sails out of Bristol to try and discover a new route to Asia and discovers Newfoundland.
- 1595 – Bristol Society of Merchant Venturers' Navigation School formed, an important moment in UWE Bristol's history.
- 1698 - Bristol’s first slave ship The Beginning sails from Bristol to the African coast.
- 1795 – Poet William Coleridge gives an anti-slavery lecture in Bristol.
- 1807 – An Act of Parliament signals the end of the British trade in enslaved Africans.
- 1809 – Bristol Floating Harbour opens.
- 1836 – Bristol Zoological Gardens opens.
- 1843 – The SS Great Britain is launched.
- 1864 – Clifton Suspension Bridge opens.
- 1897 – Cabot Tower is built high on top of Brandon Hill to commemorate the 400th anniversary of John Cabot's voyage to Newfoundland.
- 1910 – Bristol Aeroplane Company is founded at Filton.
- 1967 – St Paul's Carnival is held for the first time.
- 1969 – Concorde makes its maiden flight from Filton.
- 1970 – The SS Great Britain returns home to Bristol for the last time.
- 1997 – Local artist Banksy paints his first major mural.
- 2002 – Bristol shortlisted for European Capital of Culture.
- 2003 – Concorde makes its last ever flight to Filton.
- 2008 – Bristol becomes the UK's first Cycling City and is shortlisted for European Capital of Culture.
- 2008 – International graffiti artists paint the city in the first–ever Upfest.
- 2009 – Bristol is named 'European City of the Year'.
- 2010 – Bristol is named 'Britain's most musical city'.
- 2012 – Bristol’s first elected Mayor takes seat, architect and entrepreneur George Ferguson (independent).
- 2013 – Bristol is ranked as the best city to live in the UK.
- 2014 – Bristol is awarded title of European Green Capital for 2015.
- 2016 – Bristol pioneers community energy supply with the Bristol Energy company.
- 2017 – Bristol is ranked best place to live by The Sunday Times.
- 2019 – Bristol becomes home to the first inland surf lagoon, The Wave.
- 2020 – Bristol hosts Greta Thunberg at one of the UK’s biggest school strikes.
- 2020 – Bristol launches the Interactive Light Festival, connecting technology and culture.
- 2020 – Black Lives Matter protestors bring down statue of Bristol slave trader Edward Colston.