England's Past for Everyone Bristol


The Bristol project was led by two academics, Dr Madge Dresser and Dr Peter Fleming at the Regional History Centre of the University of the West of England, working with volunteers to research 1001 years of the presence and experience of ethnic minorities in the city. The two-year project was formally launched in March 2006 by politician, Tony Benn and Sir Howard Newby (then UWE’s Vice-Chancellor).


A paperback book Bristol: Ethnic Minorities and the City 1000-2001 (ISBN: 978-1-86077-477-5) was published by Phillimore in 2007. In addition to the authors, Edson Burton (playwright and poet), Joe Hillaby (expert on medieval Jewry) and Forward Maisokwadzo (exiled Zimbabwean journalist) contributed to the book. Architectural consultant Andy Foyle produced a gazetteer of religious sites in the city as part of the research.

The book launch by the Lord Mayor of Bristol, Royston Griffey, was attended by over 130 members of the community who had contributed to the project, and the event was closed by local broadcaster, Sherrie Eugene (see gallery). It was followed by a book signing and presentation by the authors at Waterstones bookshop.

Schools Resources

Activities, timelines and lesson plans entitled Diversity Through Time and based on the academic research were developed by education consultant Dean Smart, and trialled by 30 pupils from Ashton Park School, Bristol. These were so well received that the Diversity Trail was commissioned as an extension to the schools project aimed at Key Stages 2-3, which is published on the Schools Learning Zone