- James MacVeigh
15th June 2016
Illustrated with memorable photographs throughout, Secret Bristol peels away the gloss which covers inconvenient historic events to reveal truths about the city that are sometimes horrific, brutal, or merely odd. From prehistory to the present, it takes us on a fascinating journey through the inhuman aspects of early trade, through slavery, piracy, struggles for social justice portrayed as criminal riots and the cruelties inflicted in city institutions. Bristol’s contribution to aircraft and automobile design and manufacture is chronicled, and the contempt felt for ordinary people by First World War generals and Whitehall bigwigs is exposed, as is the way opposition to the pointless conflict was swept under the carpet of history. The book describes how Bristol’s medieval heart, largely destroyed in the Blitz, was forgotten with the connivance of the government and finished off by post-war planners. The ‘Whites Only’ employment policy on Bristol buses in the early ’60s and the 1980 St Paul’s riots take us up to Bristol today.