In June 2019 we hosted a creative evening with the community at the New Place. We promoted the evening with door to door flyering and posters displayed in the local area as well as social channels. We also had an article in the Fishponds Voice after the evening promoting the project.
We did some basic lino print making using different shapes and colours, making banners to be displayed in the New Place's windows. The purpose of the evening was to get people to sign up to be involved with the project. We were hopeful that those who did sign up would attend the Individuals art group.
On the evening we asked the 22 attendees some questions and learned the following:
One resident attending was born in Eastville in the 30's and some moved here in the 70's. The rest of the attendants moved here over the last 5-10 years.
Stories and Histories local to Eastville There are mature fruit trees in Royate Hill Nature Reserve;
In the old days before the M32, there were trainlines. At the Muller road Junction there was a low railway bridge, which meant trains had to be specially adapted to get under it;
George Muller was a very religious man, and he said there should be no pubs built on Muller Road;
Rumour has it that some royalty visited Eastville, she wore a red coat with a velvet collar... Apparently this was Princess Diana who visited a Home for the Blind opposite Maytrees Medical Practice;
One resident on Fremantle Road learnt that her grandfather had also lived on Fremantle Road in the early 1900's. After she had been living there for 5 years, a long lost cousin showed her mum an identity card of her grandfather which had his address as Fremantle Road, Eastville, Bristol.
How could Fishponds Road become a flourishing, multicultural and friendly High-Street?
The area needs to lose the stigma as being a "mess" and become attractive. People will naturally have more respect for the area.
Inspire the look of the high street, showing pride in our community; including the shops, for example the flowers on Downend High Street.
Flower boxes and hanging baskets
Traffic calming measures, to increase the space for pedestrians to linger around the shops, instead of escaping the traffic.
Enforcement of dangerous and illegal parking at junctions.
A street party on Fishponds Road!
Sand all over the road with sandcastles, children playing and music, smell of cooking food and a massive table on the road with all sorts of people from different classes and cultures passing houmous and acai fish.
Encourage cooperation of local businesses / cultural organisations and residents to come together and share food and culture. Take positive ownership of the area.
Have a meet your neighbours afternoon on every street.
Get younger people more involved through social media, incentives, events, prizes.
An "Eastville Voice" magazine.
Door to door questionnaires. Get to know your neighbours, and what they might need help with. Loneliness, cooking, gardening. Who is willing to contribute what - and match people up with each other.
Solutions to the overfilled commercial bins on the pedestrian path on Fishponds Road.
Incentives to engage businesses to make positive changes
A monthly Eastville magazine could promote businesses if they were compliant.
Encourage change in behaviour - visibility through organised litterpicks.
Add more litter bins, one by each lamppost.
Remove the commercial bins - they attract fly-tipping and always overflow. There has always been shops here but the bins used to be stored by the shops.
Accountability from the businesses, if the bins were by their shop entrances, they would take more care of them.
Council involvement and enforcement of existing restrictions, zero tolerance, not turn a blind eye.
Visual incentives and art interventions. Painting lampposts, bins.
We followed up on these suggestions from residents to inform the process of the project further.