What is the We Are Bristol History Commission, background members and reports.
The We Are Bristol History Commission is an independent group who will:
- help Bristol better understand its history and how it became the city it is today
- work with citizens and community groups to make sure that everyone in the city can share their views on Bristol's history
- build an improved, shared understanding of Bristol's story for future generations
This process will be facilitated by the commission asking questions of the city to start a conversation.
The first question the commission is asking is what have we remembered?'
Background and scope of the commission
The commission was set up in September 2020 by Marvin Rees, Mayor of Bristol, after the pulling down of the statue of Edward Colston in the summer.
While the commission's focus will initially consider the future of the statue as its first theme, in later questions the commission will consider:
- history of slavery
- growth of education
- struggles of workers for pay and working conditions
- Chartists and Suffragettes campaigning for emancipation
- the key roles of wars
- harbour and the docks
- manufacturing and industry
- research and innovation
- slum clearances
- modern gentrification
- migration and faith
History Commission reports
- pdf The Colston Statue: What Next? full report (5.52 MB)
- pdf The Colston Statue: What Next? Shorter report with Bridging Histories (2.31 MB)
If you need either report in an alternative format, email email@example.com
Thank you to University of Bristol and UWE Bristol for contributing funding towards this report.
Current members of the We Are Bristol History Commission
The commission is made up of a wide range of professional historians and academics. These are from different specialist areas including philosophy, trade unions, arts and culture, and law.
The members are:
- Dr Tim Cole: Professor of Social History, University of Bristol (Chair)
- Dr Madge Dresser: Honorary Professor of History, University of Bristol
- Dr Shawn Sobers: Professor of Cultural Interdisciplinary Practice, University of the West of England
- Dr Joanna Burch-Brown: Lecturer in Philosophy, University of Bristol
- Estella Tincknell: Associate Professor in Film and Culture, University of the West of England
- Dr Edson Burton: Writer and Historian
- Nigel Costley: Regional Secretary, Trades Union Congress
- Professor Steve Poole Professor of History and Heritage, University of the West of England
Contact the commission
Meeting minutes and agendas
- pdf Meeting minutes: October 2021 (150 KB)
- pdf Meeting minutes: September 2021 (139 KB)
- pdf Meeting minutes: August 2021 (152 KB)
- pdf Meeting minutes: July 2021 (141 KB)
- pdf Meeting minutes: June 2021 (171 KB)
Email firstname.lastname@example.org to request previous meeting minutes.
Terms of reference
We Are Bristol History Commission future website
A separate website for the We Are Bristol History Commission is being developed. The commission's information will be hosted here until the new website is ready.