Hands On Bristol gives local groups and specialists the unique opportunity to transform spaces across Bristol. Previous projects have included self-built pocket parks, light installations, densification proposals, a community cinema, recycling clothes shop, community art interventions and greening the high street. The possibilities are broad and endless. For example in 2015 as part of the European Green Capital students undertook a visioning exercise to explore interventions which would encourage clean, safe and financially viable swimming within Bristol Harbour. Another commission came from the Bedminster Town Team. The question was how can we design low-budget interventions in order to change perceptions and encourage a more vibrant high street. Following extensive consultation with businesses and local people, final proposals were developed for an outdoor gallery and the installation of a pocket park. Pocket parks otherwise known as a ‘parkette’ are tiny parks often created on a single vacant building lot, or small irregular pieces of land.
Using a built environment challenge posed by community groups or organisations as the starting point, Architecture students will work through a number of steps to develop and deliver a design brief for a project.
Typical stages involve:
  • Client and student meeting to develop a detailed brief for the project
  • Survey of the project leading to the production of drawings and models
  • Context research exploring the wider surroundings and the networks of actors or stakeholders involved
  • Production of a design report including details of costings, and similar projects for comparison
Working with Communities helps us to develop practice-ready professional experience for our graduates, whilst encouraging a wider sense of the city and giving something back to it. Many of the proposals we develop are self-build and (almost) zero-budget solutions. If you would like to get involved with Hands on Bristol and you think you might be interested in working with students on an architectural project, please get in touch and we will put you in contact with the relevant department. Or you can find out more here: http://www.hands-on-bristol.co.uk

People on a local street

Revitalising the Highstreet

Brightly coloured ribbon on a street opposite a market

Make Life More Absurd

Visual impression of beachfront in Bristol

Redcliffe Warf Outdoor Swimming