Snaps of buildings, a bridge and balloons show love for city
The support from the public has been excellent, and the photos we have received have been fantastic. It's been great to see a range of skills and ages taking part as well.
"Basically, we've collected a wonderful visual catalogue of what people love about Bristol."
The speaker, Carys Rea, is proudly describing the results of an open photography competition, devised by herself and others, for which Bristolians have created some superb visual evocations of what they most love about our city.
This Saturday, in case you didn't know, is Bristol Civic Day, a celebration of all that's best about our fair city. The day has been organised by a team of volunteers – Carys included – working on behalf of Bristol Civic Society, an independent organisation working to celebrate and improve Bristol's built environment.
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The Civic Day itself is a new national initiative, for which civic societies across England are inviting people to celebrate their area and discover more about where they live. And Bristol's response – an apt one, given just how intriguing, varied and often beautiful our built environment is – was to devise the aforesaid photography competition.
Carys and the team asked members of the public to submit photos of their favourite building or open space in Bristol: you can view the entries (120 of them and still counting) on the Civic Day's own Flickr site (details below).
And a fine collection it makes, too. Various iconic Bristolian sights – Ashton Court, graffiti, balloons, Clifton crescents and, of course, the Suspension Bridge – are joined by some more unexpected landscapes: the warren of disused railway tracks near Cumberland Basin; the Lead Shot Tower and its reflection in the Floating Harbour; even the secluded, tree-fringed Abbots Pool to the west of town.
Taken as a whole, the pictures make a beguiling and inspiring picture of Bristol and its surroundings, via a mix of familiar and lesser-known city sights.
"We've received more photographs of buildings than open spaces, which shows the amount of pride that Bristolians take in our architecture," Carys says.
Throughout Saturday, the entries will be on display at The Bearpit, the open space at the bottom of Stokes Croft. You can also vote for your favourite snap (either on the day or beforehand, via the Flickr page) to win the People's Prize, the winner of which will be announced towards the end of the day. Also on Saturday, the Civic Day team will be at various venues around town, asking passers-by to name what they most love about Bristol and capturing their responses on film. It's part of a plan for the Civic Day to have some enduring legacy.
"We hope that the day allows people to celebrate the city, and to discover more about Bristol," Carys adds.
"But we also want to use it to collate a range of views on our city, and to produce a short film to highlight what Bristolians most value about this city – and what is most important to improve or protect for future generations."
The photographs submitted for Bristol Civic Day will be shown at The Bearpit, St James Barton, Bristol, on Saturday, June 23, from 10am-4pm. See listings for details or visit www.flickr.com/photos/ bristolcivicday.