News & Events

2018 - the Year of the Commonwealth

2018 - the Year of the Commonwealth

29 September 2017

The Lord-Lieutenant, Mrs Peaches Golding OBE, Patron of the Bristol Commonwealth Society, was keynote speaker at today’s Society lunch. The UK is a microcosm of the Commonwealth, with 50% of the population having an ancestral or other connection.  From January 2018 the royal family will be involved in a number of engagements celebrating the Commonwealth, including visits to many Commonwealth countries. Of importance will be Commonwealth Day (Monday, March 12), the two weeks of the Commonwealth Games in Queensland, Australia (Wednesday 4 - Sunday 15 April) and then the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting will take place in London from Monday 16 April onwards.  Topics of discussion during the forums at the Meeting will include Women, Civil Society, Young People and Business. The Lord-Lieutenant challenged the Bristol Commonwealth Society to compile a diary of events taking place across the City in 2018 that align with the theme of the Commonwealth so that she can inform The Queen of activities taking place in Bristol.  She also spoke of the Queen’s Commonwealth Trust which funds young people who have ideas on how to improve their communities.  With due diligence, and support where needed, these young people run their own small-scale charitable initiatives or social enterprises which provide local solutions to local problems.  Although the level of funding is small, the idea of youth-led development is acknowledged by many agencies as an effective means of enabling young people to be equal partners in making the world a better place.

Grayson Perry tour ignites the Arnolfini galleries

Grayson Perry tour ignites the Arnolfini galleries

27 September 2017

Charismatic Grayson Perry enthralled invited guests at the preview of his new exhibition ‘The Most Popular Art Exhibition Ever!’ which has opened at the Arnolfini Art Gallery until 24 December.  In a preview to his exhibition, Grayson spoke to the invited dignitaries and guests about the intention and motivation behind his latest exhibition.  The works - in ceramics, metal, print, tapestry and painting - explore issues ranging from BREXIT and religion to masculinity and class.  Here Grayson explains to the audience how he produced the vase shown.  Starting with a hand-built coil pot, he added glazes, texts, more glazes and finishes.  He explained how his art is developed from ideas, phrases and images used by the British public and how we have more common interests than diverging ones.  This is the first time this art exhibition has been shown outside London.  Director Claire Doherty also encouraged visitors to the Arnolfini to participate in its ‘Imagine New Rules’ consultation that will inform the next stage of development for the Gallery;  it runs concurrently with the Grayson Perry exhibition.

FBI National Academy Associates (FBINAA) meets in Bristol 25 & 26 September 2017

FBI National Academy Associates (FBINAA) meets in Bristol 25 & 26 September 2017

26 September 2017

The Federal Bureau of Investigation National Academy Associates (FBINAA) held its 35th retraining conference in Bristol.  The Opening Ceremony involved the Lord-Lieutenant, High Sheriff and Lord Mayor of Bristol together with eight of the Lord Mayor's Mace bearers from Avon and Somerset Constabulary.  Approximately 300 delegates from the FBI posted in the US and in US embassies around Europe were joined by chiefs of police forces from 42 European countries.  In the opening speech by Lord-Lieutenant Mrs Peaches Golding, she informed the delegates that the role of Lord-Lieutenant was created by King Henry VIII in 1536 to form militias to deal with wide-ranging threats.  She noted the importance of bringing together delegates whose role is to face modern-day global threats and hazards.  She noted the significance of the formal and informal networks created and their role in increasing the effectiveness of cross-border working.  She congratulated delegates on their 35th annual conference and welcomed them to Bristol.  She hoped their conference would be successful.  Among keynote speakers were the Executive Assistant Director of the FBI Mr Paul Abbate, the Director General of the UK National Crime Agency Ms Lynne Owens and the Director General of Europol Mr Rob Wainwright.  A banquet was held in the nave of Bristol Cathedral on 26th September where choral performances by the Cathedral Choir entertained the delegates.  Among the dignitaries were the Police and Crime Commissioner Ms Sue Mountstevens, the Avon & Somerset Chief Constable Mr Andy Marsh and the Dean of the Bristol Cathedral Very Rev Dr David Hoyle.  The event was organised by the Chief Constable of Staffordshire Mr Gareth Morgan (formerly Assistant Chief Constable of Avon & Somerset Constabulary).

The Rt Rev Bishop Mike Hill retires

The Rt Rev Bishop Mike Hill retires

23 September 2017

The Right Reverend Bishop Mike Hill delivered his last address as Bishop of the Diocese of Bristol before a packed congregation at the Bristol Cathedral on Saturday.  The service was attended by his wife Anthea, their family, clergy from all corners of the Diocese as well as three current Lord-Lieutenants and three retired Lord-Lieutenants.  Bishop Mike and Anthea came to Bristol in 2003 from the Diocese of Oxford.  He became a ember of the House of Lords in 2009.  The service demonstrated his passion for preaching the word of God in an accessible and engaging way.  The Cathedral Choir, the Renewal Gospel Choir and a guitarist in turn led hymns sung in full voice by the congregation. The couple will retire to Clevedon.  The search for the successor to Bishop Mike will be carried out by the Vacancy in See Committee and will begin shortly.

'Changing Tunes' charity celebrates 30th anniversary at HMP Bristol

'Changing Tunes' charity celebrates 30th anniversary at HMP Bristol

14 September 2017

For 30 years, the musical charity Changing Tunes has enabled prisoners to tap into their creativity and emotions in 16 prisons across the UK. Today at HMP Bristol, the charity brought together ex-prisoners and Changing Tunes musicians to celebrate not only this milestone anniversary, but also the charities’ partnership with the prison.  Changing Tunes’ CEO Lizzie Bond, HMP Bristol Governor Steve Cross and the charities’ Founder, Richard Pendlebury were joined by the Lord-Lieutenant and a number of VIPs from around the city and county. HMP Bristol’s Changing Tunes five-piece prisoner group, led by Rob Davies, Musician in Residence, performed a number of well-known songs to which the audience tapped their feet and joined in the singing.  The atmosphere was in marked contract to normal prison life.  Musician and songwriter Arty, an ex-prisoner whom the charity met inside 10 years ago, spoke eloquently about his life and how through music he was able to express his emotions.  He performed his own songs containing heartfelt lyrics and striking melodies. 

The charity Changing Tunes, working in prisons and their communities post-release, has gone from strength to strength, helping people live a life after prison that is free from crime and full of meaning and purpose.  Changing Tunes will be continuing the celebrations with a 30th Anniversary Concert on October 21st at Redland Parish Church, Bristol (tickets on sale via their website) and will also be releasing a 30th Anniversary album entitled ‘Thirty’. This will be a special compilation featuring ex-prisoners in partnership with Billy Bragg and Frank Turner, and will be available to buy at the concert. All proceeds will go directly to the charity to help them continue their work.

 Tickets are available to buy on the Changing Tunes website at www.changingtunes.org.uk

 

Brigadier to command Naval Regional HQ

Brigadier to command Naval Regional HQ

12 September 2017

For the first time since World War II, the Wales and Western England Naval Region will be commanded by a Brigadier.  Brigadier Graeme ‘Jock’ Fraser MBE Royal Marines brings a wealth of experience to the region ranging from his peace-keeping, disaster-relief, military and diplomatic roles in Arctic environments as well as in the Caribbean, West Africa, Middle East and the USA.  Effectively the Naval Attaché for the region, his responsibilities include the coordination of Naval Service support to the civil authorities in time of crises; liaising with the civic community; coordinating arrangements for Royal Navy and foreign warships visiting commercial ports; representing the Royal Navy at ceremonies and public events and supporting numerous Regular Navy, Royal Marines and Maritime Reserve units in the region. The Brigadier was awarded the MBE in December 2015 for his role over two years with the Joint Forces Headquarters, the UK’s extremely high readiness headquarters, engaged in military responses to a range of crises around the globe.

The Lord-Lieutenant welcomed the Brigadier to the City on the third day of his command at Naval Regional Headquarters at HMS FLYING FOX.

Castle Park Tree Trail leaflet launch

Castle Park Tree Trail leaflet launch

11 September 2017

Richard Bland (speaking right), a noted tree expert, spoke during a reception to mark the launch of the Castle Park Tree Trail.  He addressed a reception, held at the Bristol Harbour Hotel, prior to setting off on the walk.  Among those attending were the Lord-Lieutenant Peaches Golding, High Sheriff Anthony Brown, Lord Mayor Cllr Mrs Lesley Alexander, Savita Willmott (Bristol Natural History Consortium), Ben Newby (Bristol Water), Simon Birch (Bristol Civic Society), to name but a few.  The Lord-Lieutenant also spoke during the reception, highlighting three points.  Firstly, she emphasised the importance of the history of Castle Park and its memorials to those who fought in the Civil War and World Wars I and II.  Secondly, she highlighted the importance of continuing the ten year momentum of the green capital movement.  Lastly, she praised the dedication of the partnership led by Ann Freeman, who spearheaded the Castle Park Tree Trail initiative. Other partners included the Bristol City Parks Department, artist and architect Roger Mortimer, and Bristol Civic Society who jointly produced the leaflet.  Richard then led an hour-long walk around Bristol’s historic Castle Park, pointing out the trees planted there during the past 40 years as well as historical facts associated with the Park.  The Tree Trail leaflet can be downloaded at www.bristol.gov.uk/museums-parks-sports-culture/castle-park

Naming of new Aircraft Carrier

Naming of new Aircraft Carrier

6 September 2017

The City of Bristol is affiliated with the new aircraft carrier, HMS PRINCE OF WALES, currently in construction at Rosyth shipyard in Scotland. Over 170 military, civic, and political leaders from the UK, the USA and France attended a Dinner at the Institute of Directors in London, hosted by Admiral Sir Philip Jones KCB ADC, First Sea Lord and Chief of Naval Staff.  Pictured are Sarah Pullen (Trinity Mirror regional managing editor for Bristol, Gloucestershire, Bath, Somerset and Dorset) and James Durie (Director at Bristol Chamber and Initiative at Business West) who joined the Lord-Lieutenant and Captain Ian Groom, the first captain of HMS PRINCE OF WALES.

The keynote speaker was Secretary of State Sir Michael Fallon.  He emphasised the importance of the new aircraft carrier to Britain over the next 50 years. It will be used for diplomatic, disaster relief, hosting trade exhibitions as well as for defence reasons. HMS PRINCE OF WALES, together with her sister ship HMS QUEEN ELIZABETH, are the largest warships ever built in Britain. Her construction created and sustained 8,000 jobs at six British shipyards.  The 65,000 tonne vessel has four acres of flight deck and stands as tall as The Shard building in London.

The dinner was attended by dignitaries and business leaders from Bristol, Liverpool and London as these locations are affiliated with the ship.

On 8th September, the Lord-Lieutenant and Lord Mayor of Bristol attended the actual naming ceremony in Rosyth in the presence of TRH The Duke and Duchess of Rothesay, the titles for TRH The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall when they are in Scotland.  Both the Lord-Lieutenant, Lord Mayor, the Bristol Chamber of Commerce and Junior Chamber of Commerce were among visitors to Rosyth earlier in the year.  The City, its businesses and residents are exploring how best to establish and maintain links with HMS PRINCE OF WALES during her 50 year lifespan.  A FULL DESCRIPTION OF THE NAMING CEREMONY, WITH PHOTOGRAPHS, CAN BE FOUND UNDER THE MENU HEADING  "BRISTOL AND THE ROYAL FAMILY"  AT THE TOP OF THIS PAGE. 

Bristol welcomes 30 new British Citizens

Bristol welcomes 30 new British Citizens

31 August 2017

Bristol is a welcoming and diverse city.  Once a fortnight there is a citizenship ceremony, an event involving around 30 people that highlights British values of tolerance, freedom of speech, diversity and respect for others.  The ceremony is the culmination of an application process taking up to three or more months.  Applicants must be of good character and have a knowledge of life in Britain.  In most cases they have lived here for more than five years.

Bristol welcomes 30 new British Citizens

Bristol welcomes 30 new British Citizens

31 August 2017

Bristol's newest citizens are welcomed to the city in a ceremony where they pledge an oath of allegiance and receive a silver medal from the City to mark the culmination of a three month process to become a British citizen. The Lord-Lieutenant was particularly pleased for her friend, a chaplain, who herself was naturalised in today’s ceremony.  Thirty individuals from four continents and 18 different countries took part in this latest ceremony and demonstrated considerable pride in what they had achieved, as seen in their broad smiles and the many photographs taken by the their sponsors and families. 

Bristol Commemorates Acting Lance Corporal Frederick George Room

Bristol Commemorates Acting Lance Corporal Frederick George Room

16 August 2017

The Lord-Lieutenant, Lord Mayor and Colonel Mike Duff revealed a paving stone to commemorate the heroism of Acting Lance Corporal Frederick George Room, recipient of the Victoria Cross. Room was born in Horfield, Bristol. He was recognised for his tremendous acts of courage as a stretcher bearer during a battle at Frezenberg, Belgium, that took place exactly 100 years ago. In November 1917, Room was one of 126 service men presented to King George V at an investiture ceremony on Durdham Downs. After a long illness, Frederick Room died in hospital in Bristol on 19th January 1932, aged 36. He is buried at Greenbank Cemetery and his Victoria Cross is on display at the National Army Museum, Chelsea.

39th Annual Bristol International Balloon Fiesta

39th Annual Bristol International Balloon Fiesta

11 August 2017

It is possible to run out of superlatives when describing the early morning take-off at Bristol International Balloon Fiesta! 103 balloons wafted upwards over Ashton Court Estate and across the City. Balloons were of all shapes and sizes, some with a small crew and a few passengers, others with large baskets full of people. Rumour has it that, on landing, some of these larger parties cracked open several bottles of champagne in noisy celebration of an exhilarating drift through the skies over Bristol.

Following the launch, solicitors Thrings and Business West held a thought provoking Business Breakfast consisting of a panel discussion challenging the power of the brand attended by 150 business people from across the region. Panelists Rob Law (Trunki), Nick Davies (Neighbourly.com) and Peter Haigh (Bristol Energy) spoken candidly of their experiences of how brands seduce and hold on to customers and whether being ethnical really sways consumer behaviour.

Lord-Lieutenant’s final day of radiotherapy treatment

Lord-Lieutenant’s final day of radiotherapy treatment

4 August 2017

Lord-Lieutentant Peaches Golding today successfully completed a course of treatment of radiotherapy for a primary breast cancer.  She presented each of the radiographers involved in her treatment with hibiscus flowers from a collection managed and grown by her husband, Bob. The team received a flower every day throughout her treatment.

Peaches was diagnosed with breast cancer within days of being appointed Her Majesty’s Lord-Lieutenant. She had surgery as well as three weeks of radiotherapy delivered five days a week in order to cure the illness. Although she is recovering well, her stamina is reduced due to the fatigue she is experiencing as a normal part of the treatment process. The treatment received by Peaches at the Oncology Centre at United Hospitals Bristol has been of the highest quality, delivered with care and compassion.

While she is feeling so fatigued, Peaches is limiting her duties as Lord-Lieutenant to some small extent. However, she is confident that she will soon return to her normal self.

Chinese Cookery Class led by professional Chef

Chinese Cookery Class led by professional Chef

31 July 2017

Lord-Lieutenant Peaches Golding and her husband Bob were invited to take part in the last of the international food classes organised by the Bristol & Avon Chinese Women’s Group (BACWG). The theme was "Green food". More than 60 people took part in the event.  Among the guests were Lord Mayor of Bristol Councillor Mrs Lesley Alexander, Councillor Helen Holland, Adam Rees, Director of Bristol Ageing Better and Carly Urbanski, Programme Manage of, Bristol Ageing Better. Both the Lord-Lieutenant and the Lord Mayor presented certificates to the volunteer chefs that led 24 previous cookery sessions held earlier in the year.  The aim of the cooking classes was to encourage Chinese residents in Bristol to learn how to cook tasty foods from countries around the world.  The classes attracted professional and voluntary chefs as well as people living across the City.  Rosa Hui DL is the Managing Director of BACWG.

Patron visits the Great Western Air Ambulance Charity

Patron visits the Great Western Air Ambulance Charity

26 July 2017

Lord-Lieutenant Peaches Golding visited the Great Western Air Ambulance Charity (GWAAC) of which she is Patron. GWAAC provides life saving emergency care to prople who cannot be reached by road or are in such a critical state that they require specialist skills at the scene of an accident. 40% of GWAAC services are provided to people in Bristol. Anyone can support their operation!  http://www.greatwesternairambulance.com/.

 

 

Tenth Anniversary of Penny Brohn UK

Tenth Anniversary of Penny Brohn UK

18 July 2017

For ten years, Penny Brohn UK has helped people live well with the impact of cancer by offering emotional, nutritional, psychological and physical support. In celebration, the well respected charity held a tea party where supporters, patients, therapists and volunteers could reflect on the ground-breaking treatments pioneered by the National Centre. Two prizes were raffled on the day. HRH The Prince of Wales is Patron of Penny Brohn UK https://www.pennybrohn.org.uk/

It is not entirely clear what was going on when this photo was taken, but apparently Peaches came across some long forgotten little treasures in his top pocket that filled them both with instant and identical delight.

Or maybe it was something to do with the raffle....

Bristol SU Awards 2017 celebrating student achievements with Prof Hugh Brady & Prof George Banting

Bristol SU Awards 2017 celebrating student achievements with Prof Hugh Brady & Prof George Banting

10 July 2017

SU 2017 celebrated a vast array of achievements by students at the University of Bristol. Professor George Banting and Vice Chancellor Professor Hugh Brady joined the Lord-Lieutenant, dignitaries, academics and students for an evening of entertainment, awards and presentations. The Students’ Union holds The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service.

Honors Carolina - UNC Class of 2021 visit Bristol

Honors Carolina - UNC Class of 2021 visit Bristol

7 July 2017

The latest group of students enrolled on the University of North Carolina (UNC) Honors Carolina course spent a lovely day in Bristol during which they engaged in a discussion with former Carolina alumna Lord-Lieutenant Peaches Golding OBE.  Meeting Peaches, a graduate from the UNC Chapel Hill, USA, in 1976, was part of a packed, week-long programme of activities for the students, who are recent high school graduates about to start their four years of study at UNC. Students participating on the Honors Carolina programme met a number of Carolina alumni involved in plant genomics at Kew, diplomacy at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, global finance at Barclays; they also attended a performance at Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre. Peaches was instrumental in encouraging the Honors Carolina programme to visit Bristol. The group was based at Winston House in Bedford Square, the London home of UNC Honors Carolina.  During their day-trip from the capital city they enjoyed a cruise along the Bristol docks and ate lunch overlooking the iconic Clifton Suspension Bridge. One of the aims of the Honors Carolina programme is to broaden the career ambitions and horizons of the participants. Thus, in a discussion led by Honors Carolina Dean Prof Jim Leloudis, the group held an informal, illustrated conversation on how Peaches’ career had developed and progressed from those heady days in Chapel Hill to her present role as Lord-Lieutenant of Bristol, UK.

Chineke! Orchestra performs at St George’s Brandon Hill concert

Chineke! Orchestra performs at St George’s Brandon Hill concert

23 April 2017

The Chineke! Orchestra, Europe’s first orchestra of exceptionally talented black and minority ethnic musicians, staged a concert at St George’s Brandon Hill.  Bristol was chosen as the orchestra’s first concert outside London since its launch in 2015. The orchestra champions change and celebrates diversity in classical music. It comes together several times a year to perform together. Among the musicians taking part was the BBC Young Musician of the Year Sheku Kanneh-Mason. Founder of Chineke! Orchestra, and double bassist, Chi-chi Nwanoku MBE is already known to Bristol audiences as a leading member of the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment.  St George’s has championed BME artists and those with disabilities from across music genres including classical, jazz, and world, and is seeking funding to deliver an education and outreach programme alongside Chineke! Orchestra. St George’s has championed BME artists and those with disabilities from across music genres including classical, jazz, and world, and is seeking funding to deliver an education and outreach programme alongside Chineke! Orchestra. Chief Executive of St George’s Bristol, Suzanne Rolt, commented: “We could not be more excited to be marking St George’s Day with the Bristol launch of an extraordinary new orchestra Chineke! – Europe’s first professional black and minority ethnic orchestra.”