As part of the Homes for Heroes 100 programme, we are publishing a new book of walks on a housing theme. This blog looks at one of the areas to be covered – Sea Mills – which is the focus of centenary celebrations led by the Sea Mills 100 initiative and one of the Homes for Heroes 100 projects led by the Architecture Centre.

Sea Mills post box

The ceremonial planting of the Addison Oak on 4 June 1919 at Sea Mills marked the beginning of Bristol’s new housing programme. This walk will be around one of the country’s finest examples of a sustainable, detached Garden Suburb comprising post-First World War municipal housing. Characteristics of Garden Suburbs to be found in Sea Mills include: a planned layout of low-density housing and coherent streets; generous rear gardens and good spacing between properties to maximise access to sunlight and circulating air; houses that are individually unremarkable – with minimal ornamentation and mainly flat fronts and backs – but collectively make a picturesque impression; houses cohesively grouped in symmetrical pairs with occasional short terraces; a pleasant green setting and attractive outlooks; tree-lined streets and deep grass verges with houses set well back from the road; and provision of allotments, recreational areas, shops, schools, places of worship and a library. Sea Mills was designated a Conservation Area in February 1981. This was extended in January 2011.

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If you live or have lived in Sea Mills we’d welcome any memories or anecdotes you’d like to share about the area, particularly in relation to the key stopping points on the walk.

The old Meadway sign

The Square

The Methodist Church

The Library

Sea Mills Infant School on Hallen Drive (now closed)

Haig Close

Sylvan Lane (between Shirehampton Road and Woodleaze)

The Pentagon

St Edyth’s Church

Sea Mills Junior School

Sea Mills Farm

St Edyth’s Road

The Recreation Ground

Your comments will help us gather background material for the descriptions in the publication and may also be quoted from directly (if used, we will credit your contribution in the acknowledgements so please include your full name, unless you prefer to remain anonymous).

Please send via email to mel.kelly@businesswest.co.uk

Appeal for Family Photos/

In addition to the request above regarding Sea Mills, we are also collecting family photos from people who have lived in council housing anywhere in Bristol. Some of these are to be used on the back cover of the Homes for Heroes 100 graphic history of council housing in Bristol, but we might use some elsewhere as well, including on our blog and in social media.

They can be the most ordinary of family photos – everyone watching TV, celebrating Christmas, larking about in the garden, kids with pets, or two or three generations posing to have their picture taken. They can be from anytime between the 1920s and 1980s.

If you’d like to be part of this, please email a high-resolution scan to the same address as above,  telling us when and where (the street name will do, we don’t need the house number) the photo was taken, and the names of the people in it.

We look forward to hearing from you.

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