The beach has it's very own website/blog. See what's happening!
The beach is a place to relax, meet people and play. In the last couple of years a number of European cities not naturally endowed with a beach have been busy creating their own, converting unpromising patches of concrete landscape into chilled, sandy escapes for families, office workers and visitors to enjoy summer in the city. Paris, Amsterdam and all testify to the popularity of urban beaches. Paris is perhaps the most famous, closing the road next to the Seine and replacing traffic jams with sandcastles, ice-cream sellers and packed out sunbeds.
Demos and Zero Zero are helping Bristol to open its own urban beach in summer 2007. While retaining the inviting simplicity of other such beaches, the design and feel of Bristol’s will be animated by a set of ideas to create some deeper and wider value, experimenting with ideas around place-making, civic branding, and public space.
As well as a programme celebrating Bristol’s cultural verve in areas such as digital media, music and performance poetry, the beach will have a strong DIY philosophy. This means plenty of open spaces and slots for people and groups to share their creativity and passion- anything from putting on a play to running a tai chi class. It also means making the most of the everyday theatre of the beach, such as volley ball, muscle beach and petanque.
Redcliffe is an important site for the city- historically and now strategically - as its redevelopment pushes the regeneration of Bristol further east and south. The site is being developed after the summer, but the public realm will be retained by Bristol City Council. The temporary use of the site as a Beach is a chance to invite in different users and uses in to experiment with what kinds of community uses are possible, and help to encourage ownership and practical engagement.
Bristol will be a ‘beach within reach’, an alternative to flying or driving long distances for sun and sand. The sourcing, use and after-use of all materials will be designed for high and visible sustainability. Through partnering with local green enterprises the Beach will provide a high profile platform to showcase and develop Bristol’s green entrepreneurs and build awareness of sustainable living practices among beach goers.
Innovation & Learning
As well as creating local value for the city, the project aims to generate and share wider learning for other cities, policy-makers and practitioners. For example, the Beach is designed to test and develop new practices in terms of public participation in regeneration projects; and explore how cultural institutions can reach out and help people create their own cultural activities and value in the everyday spaces of where they live.
Finding out more/getting involved
You can download more information about the beach here.
You can also look at the plans here.
If you have any ideas for things you’d like to see on the Beach, or events and activities you’d like to run, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.