"Even as a very small boy I was utterly fascinated by animals of every kind." Shortly before his 19th birthday in December 1957, Bob Goulding accompanied Gerald Durrell on an animal collecting trip to Cameroon. "Our trip to Cameroon, which lasted around six months, is the subject of Durrell’s book ‘A Zoo in my Luggage’, published in 1960 by Rupert Hart-Davis. I am Durrell’s ‘young assistant Bob’ in the book." This was neither the beginning nor the end of a life-long involvement and fascination with tropical natural history which saw Goulding later take over management of the zoo attached to the Department of Zoology of the University of Ibadan, Nigeria in 1963. Now retired back to Bristol, he keeps a personal website which contains a fascinating record of those pioneering years. Particularly poignant is the story of the two gorillas, Aruna and Imade, from their capture by hunters to the years of their maturity. Under Golding's leadership Ibadan Zoo became an early and exemplary instance of zoo habitat design. The website contains an account of building the gorilla enclosure; a heartfelt acknowledgement of his former staff; letters from past visitors, now grown up; stories of research and collecting; a snapshot of Nigeria in the 60's and 70's; an overview of local fauna; and lots and lots of photographs! Also, hairy frogs (don't look at them.)
Fifty years ago, another bus-centric race dispute took place. Despite "Just 12 miles away in Bath, black crews were working on buses. London Transport recruitment officers had travelled to Barbados specifically to invite workers to come to the capital" ...non-whites found it impossible to obtain employment working on buses in Bristol, England. [more inside]
Bristol Tattoo Club & the Skuse Family - Awesome vintage photos from the studio of legendary Champion Tattoo Artist of all England, Les Skuse, who opened shop in 1928 and founded the Bristol Tattoo Club. After his death in 1973, son Danny ran the business and son Bill had his own shop. See Bill and his celebrated wife Rusty in Famous Couples in Tattoo History. Grandson Jimmie Skuse runs the Les Skuse Tattoo Studio today.
Derek Morris is a septuagenarian former Cadbury's accountant from Bristol. He works a straight 9 to 5. That is 9pm to 5am, because he's also a legendary reggae DJ who M.C.s in Jamaican patois. His album is here (and part 2 of the video is here).
No other hangar in the world is commodious enough to accomodate the giant. With longer wings than a Boeing 747 (70m) and ¾ of the length of an Airbus A380, but with a maximum take-off weight of only 130 tons (less than a Boeing 767), the Bristol Brabazon was only built to hold 100 passengers. The hangar that was made for it is under threat of being demolished and replaced with housing after the closure of Filton Airport, Bristol. Luckily, the red-trousered Mayor of Bristol has promised to intervene. [more inside]
In April 1998, Ninja Tune duo Up Bustle & Out traveled from Bristol to Havana. They were greeted by legendary flautist Richard Egües, who would be their guide to meeting and recording a number of Cuban musicians over the next two months. The result was the two-volume Rebel Radio: The Master Sessions, an adventurous meeting point between 'the smokeyness of Bristol and the coolness of Havana'. UB&O's Rupert Mould kept a journal which he would later publish as The Rebel Radio Diaries.
The Story of Trip-Hop's Rise Sinuous and mysterious as a plume of drifting smoke, a new sort of groove wafted two decades ago from Bristol, a bohemian university town in the west of England.... Not all local grooves take flight, but trip-hop most certainly did. Over the next two decades it was re-imagined as chill-out, downtempo, illbient and lounge music.
"F**king wanker!" "Wanker!" "You f**king wanker!" "You f**king wanker! You tosspot!" "You stupid wanker!" "I am not a wanker!" "F**king are!" And the classic, "Wuuuarrrrgggh!" Ladies and gentleman, I bring you deranged Bristolian electric bicyclist Taypet21's YouTube channel. [more inside]
"By this point there was devastation everywhere. All junctions were blocked by overturned glass bottle dumpsters and makeshift neighbourhood roadblocks blocks." Last night, a huge clash between protestors and the police kicked off in the colourful Stokes Croft area of Bristol. The cause? A recently-opened Tesco Express supermarket.
Our Meth House. Jenn Friberg and Rob Quigley bought a home in Bristol, PA. What they didn't know is that it been used as a meth house. Too bad they didn't read How to avoid buying a meth house first.
"This is the first show I've ever done where taxpayers' money is being used to hang my pictures up rather than scrape them off."
By turns touching, inspiring, and hilarious, Planet Karen is the daily comic diary of Karen Ellis.
Electric December Interactive advent calendar. 24 days of unique interactive presents and emailable cards from some of Bristol's finest creative talents. Including Aardman Animations, Insanely Great, Bristol Old Vic, Burrell Durrant Hifle and many more. [More info below]
I wonder if Microsoft's acquittal in the Bristol case is a bad omen for the DOJ.