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Aztec West office block granted listed status

Posted on Saturday 16th June 2018 at 1:07 pm by SH (Editor)

Photo of building 250 at the Aztec West Business Park.

Motorists queuing to get out of the Aztec West Business Park during the afternoon peak certainly have plenty of time to take in their surroundings, but how many of them realise that they are crawling past an architectural gem recently given protected status by Historic England?

An office block at 210 to 290 Park Avenue, visible on the left of the internal roundabout when driving into the park from the A38, is one of 17 bold, playful, brightly coloured postmodern buildings of the late 1970s to 1990s to have recently been ‘listed’ by the public body.

Postmodern architecture emerged in the 1970s as a critical reaction to modernism. In Britain it was closely associated with the economic boom of the 1980s. After a period out of favour, the 2011 exhibition ‘Style and Subversion’ at the V&A marked a revival of interest in postmodernism.

The units at Aztec West, designed by the architects CZWG, have forecourts that follow the turning circle of a car, celebrating the form of transport that enabled the development of out-of-town workplaces. They lend the buildings a Hollywood glamour, accentuated by elements of Art Deco design such as the over-scaled building numbers used as canopies over the main doors (now removed, but soon to be replaced).

The buildings have high, continuous parapets that hide the mono-pitch roofs into the internal courtyards. Beneath the parapets, double-height windows give a sense of scale and grandeur, and act as classical columns around the building. The two-storey buildings have banded cladding of red and buff brick. Completed in 1987-1988, the commission represents a key project by CZWG that combines bold geometries, colours and traditional materials to dynamic effect.

Piers Gough of GZWG, who worked on the design of the Aztec West building, told BBC Radio Bristol he was “completely thrilled” to hear of the listing, describing it as a “wonderful accolade” and a “fantastic retrospective appreciation”.

More: Listing entry for 210, 220, 240, 250, 260 and 290 Park Avenue »

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BBC Antiques Roadshow jets into Patchway

Posted on Tuesday 17th April 2018 at 10:20 pm by SH (Editor)

Concorde exhibit at Aerospace Bristol.

BBC One’s ever-popular Sunday evening programme Antiques Roadshow is coming to north Bristol on Thursday 17th May.

Photo of Fiona Bruce.

Fiona Bruce and the team of Antiques Roadshow experts will be waiting to welcome you, so dust off your family heirlooms and dig out those car boot bargains and bring them along for free advice and valuations to visitors.

The Roadshow will be filming at the home of Concorde – Aerospace Bristol. The new museum, located off Hayes Way in Patchway [BS34 5BZ], celebrates the city’s historic links to the birth of aviation and the development of supersonic travel.

At the centre of this new attraction is Concorde Alpha Foxtrot – the last Concorde to be made and the last Concorde to fly.

Last year, the programme celebrated four decades on the road with some truly amazing finds, as presenter Fiona Bruce explains:

“Can this year be even better than our last? We’ll have to go some way to top the most valuable Fabergé ever seen on the programme, a correction to Darwin’s theory of evolution by the great man himself and one of the best collections of show business memorabilia ever seen by our experts.”

“But I have every confidence we’ll do it and the thousands of people that come along to see us will pull some extraordinary things out of their bags/trolleys/bits of newspaper/suitcases/boats – and one year even out of a cart led by a dog. I can’t wait.”

More: Entry to the event is free; no pre-registration required »

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Tesco community team helps spruce up hall

Posted on Wednesday 27th September 2017 at 8:58 pm by SH (Editor)

Photo of Tesco staff and local volunteers helping to decorate St Chad's Church Hall, Patchway.

Staff from the Tesco Extra store in Bradley Stoke have joined local volunteers to spruce up a local church hall.

Dawn Richards, community champion at the Tesco store, and some of her colleagues were part of a team of eight people who spent a week in mid-August decorating the interior of St Chad’s Church Hall in Rodway Road, Patchway.

The hall is used by St Chad’s Pre-School during the day on weekdays and by various groups, including St John Ambulance Badgers, Rainbows, Brownies and dance groups, in the evenings and at weekends.

Members of the church community had already completed some of the work themselves but called in Dawn and her team to give them a helping hand. The work carried out included painting skirting boards, cupboards and walls.

The Tesco team will be returning to St Chad’s in the near future to help enhance some of the pre-school’s outdoor facilities, including the sand pit and ‘muddy play’ area.

Dawn and her team are always looking for new projects to get involved with. Anything which “helps the community” or is “for a good cause” will be considered.

Anyone wishing to suggest a suitable community project should write to Dawn Richards at Tesco Extra, Bradley Stoke BS32 8EF or email bradleystoke@eathappyproject.com

Photo: Dawn Richards (right) with Phil Mayo (left), Helen Ford (kneeling) and Barry Morgan

This article originally appeared in the September 2017 issue of the Bradley Stoke Journal news magazine (on page 27). The magazine is delivered FREE, EVERY MONTH, to 9,500 homes in Bradley Stoke, Little Stoke and Stoke Lodge. Phone 01454 300 400 to enquire about advertising or leaflet insertion.

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Patchway store’s charity birthday party raises funds for NSPCC

Posted on Saturday 9th September 2017 at 11:45 pm by SH (Editor)

NSPCC fundraising day at the SPAR store in Rodway Road, Patchway.

Patchway’s SPAR store recently hosted a charity birthday party in celebration of its parent company’s 100-year anniversary.

Colleagues at the convenience store in Rodway Road hosted a birthday party themed coffee morning and a series of fundraising activities on Friday 1st September, all in aid of children’s charity, the NSPCC.

SPAR Patchway is owned and operated by Blakemore Retail, which is part of the A.F. Blakemore & Son Ltd group of companies. Throughout 2017 A.F. Blakemore is celebrating 100 years as a successful family business.

A.F. Blakemore commercial director Caoire Blakemore commented:

“To mark our centenary, we organised a series of commemorative events to celebrate the company’s unique culture and history and positively engage with employees and the local communities we serve.”

“On 1st September more than 300 charity birthday parties took place across A.F. Blakemore’s trading area to celebrate one of the company’s five core values: making a significant, positive contribution to the community.”

SPAR UK and the NSPCC have been working together to keep children safe in communities around their stores for the past 11 years.

Since 2006, Blakemore Retail employees have raised more than £2.7 million for NSPCC services through fundraising activities such as raffles, cake sales, sponsored bike rides and fancy dress days.

A.F. Blakemore & Son Ltd was founded in 1917 when Arthur and Harriet Blakemore opened a counter grocery store in Wolverhampton, and is today the 44th largest privately owned business in the UK.

Peter Blakemore is the third generation of the Blakemore family to lead the company, which is the largest member of SPAR UK, owning 290 SPAR stores and serving more than 1,000 in total across England and Wales.

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