Colourful Totterdown Houses

Bristol: Colourfully Iconic Houses and a Bright Balloon Fiesta

Last weekend I visited friends and family in my hometown of Bristol so thought I would pay homage to this wonderfully diverse city.

Ask those who know the city a little, or not at all, what the icons of Bristol are, their answers would likely include – the Clifton Suspension Bridge, Brunel’s S.S. Great Britain, or wonderful array of balloons that make people look up at the skies of Bristol every August during the International Balloon Fiesta.




Balloons over Clifton Suspension Bridge. Photograph: courtesy of Business Interiors. 

The Bristol Balloon Fiesta

The Bristol Balloon Fiesta

Totterdown Colour

For me, along with many other ‘Bristolians’, the true icons of Bristol are its colourful houses. And, probably the most iconic of all these lie within the inner-suburb of Totterdown. This colourful and quirky little suburb is situated south of the River Avon and sits perched high above the city. The horizon of brightly coloured Victorian terraced houses and steep narrow roads can be seen from afar and whenever I catch sight of them, I know that I’m home.


Colourful houses of Totterdown. Photograph: courtesy of the BBC

Annual Art Trail

Totterdown is also home of the annual ‘Front Room Art Trail’ – a three-day extravaganza of art, poetry, film and music. In its thirteenth year, the trail allows local artists within Totterdown to open the doors of their homes and showcase their art to thousands of visitors. Taking place each November, this year on the 14th – 16th, the whole community of Totterdown gets involved, with churches, pubs, cafes, and schools acting as exhibition spaces during the three days. Previous artists include, Mollie Grinyer-Power, who makes beautiful ink butterflies.


Butterfly art by Mollie Grinyer-Power. Photograph: courtesy Totterdown Front Room Art Trail

So, if you find yourself at a loose end in November, Totterdown is the place to be! And, not only will you be able to see the colourful houses that Bristol loves, you’ll also be able to vist Vale Street – the reported steepest residential street in the UK, where for safety, safety cars can only be parked at an angle to the kerb!

Finally, one more beautifully colourful photo of Bristol. This is the view from Baltic Wharf, Spike Island in Bristol taken by Amy Woolnough.

Colours and reflections

Colourful houses in Bristol taken from Baltic Wharf, Spike Island by Amy Woolnough

Header image courtesy of Paul Green


The Chromologist


The Chromologist is a colour whisperer. He understands and knows them better than they know themselves, translating their pleas to be used beautifully for humankind. It's unknown from whence he came. Some say the fraction of space between a prism and a spectrum, others say he toiled in the fabled colour mines of Svalbard for years untold, deep underground, speaking only to the reds and blues, cerises and aquas, bronze and golds...

The Chromologist 2019 | Farrow & Ball

The Chromologist