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The local area guide to living in Bristol
Bristol is one of the south-west’s most popular cities. Great for shopping, music, and the arts, there’s a real buzz about this city that has so much to offer. With this in mind, it’s no surprise that Bristol is the UK’s eighth most populous city. Catering for students, with its fantastic university and social scene, and families with fantastic educational establishments and amenities, it’s a great place to live. In fact, it was even named as the best city in Britain to live in by The Sunday Times in 2014.
Bristol borders a number of other popular counties such as Somerset and Gloucestershire, which are loved for their rural landscape. Bristol, on the other hand, is known for its heritage and culture, with its harbour being another perk of the city. Its green conscience is another attraction, one which reflects the personalities and nature of the residents. Their actions, alongside local government policies, have lead to Bristol winning the EU’s European Green Capital Award in 2015 and becoming the UK’s most-sustainable city.
Information about the local residents
At of the 2011 census, there was a population of 428,234 in Bristol and 182,747 households. Of the population, 84% are white, while other ethnicities represented are Asian, mixed race and black.
Just over 60% of the population were in employment at the time of the census. While this number may seem low, it’s important to remember that Bristol is a popular university city and attracts young families too. In fact, over 30% of the population were in full-time education and not working at the time of the census. This left just over 4% of the population, who were unemployed, and a similar percentage of retired residents.
The young population in Bristol is larger than average – partly due to the number of fantastic schools in the area. Some of the best primary schools include Ashley Down Primary School and Brentry Primary School – both of which were rated as ‘outstanding’ in their latest Ofsted reports. The best schools tend to be located in the north west of the city, but all schools here tend to perform well.
Secondary school education is just as good, with a number of fantastic schools including St Mary Redcliffe and Temple School. For those who want to progress to higher education, The University of Bristol is consistently ranked as one of the best in the county, while the University of the West of England offers a wide range of courses too. Bath University is also nearby and again performs well in university league tables.
The best way to travel around the busy city is by bus. There are a number of good services running across the city to residential areas, shopping areas, Frenchay hospital, and many schools. Driving is another option, but the roads do tend to get quite busy, although travelling outside of Bristol is made easy with good links to the M4 and M5 motorways.
For travel further afield, there are two well-connected train stations – Bristol Parkway and Bristol Temple Meads. Temple Meads offers a fast and efficient route into London and other popular UK cities and towns. The city also has its own airport, offering a huge number of overseas flights.
If you like shopping, you’ll love the huge range of shops to be found in Bristol. The city centre boasts not one, but four shopping areas. The main shopping spot is Cabot Circus, an open-air mall with all your high street shops and department stores. It’s also home to a cinema and range of restaurants. Also sat in the city centre is Broadmead and The Galleries, another indoor shopping centre.
For more unique finds, we recommend Clifton Villages – a Georgian street full of boutiques. Alternatively, if you’re looking for cutting-edge, trendy fashion, head to Park Street. Out-of-town shopping is also available at The Mall at Cribs Causeway, which also boasts free parking.
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All information was correct at time of publication and is provided in good faith.