Relax the Rules on The Downs

To get more people an families out and about my idea is to have a look and amend the rules and by laws on The Downs.

Currently you can have BBQ 's unless you are in the allocated area which is in the trees and not practical. You can have tents or gazebos, wind breaks etc, described as no free standing structure.

families need a place to relax and have fun without out of date rules which don't follow with the times we live in. If the downs committee are worried it damages the ground then why are numerous football games allowed. Surely that is worse

Why the contribution is important

This is important so that families and others know they can go to a place with no restrictions and enjoy themselves. Good for bristol as it will bring people in and word will spread.

by user162427 on November 19, 2013 at 02:15PM

Current Rating

Average rating: 1.8
Based on: 14 votes


  • Posted by user734334 November 24, 2013 at 11:35

    Agree. What is the point of a public space if the public can't use it?
  • Posted by user515911 November 25, 2013 at 23:02

    I am totally opposed to barbecues on the Downs. They can trigger asthma attacks, and are bad news for people with other breathing problems and anyone who has gone there for fresh air! Also they do long-term damage to the grass and soil. Plus there is surely danger in having hot coals where people (especially children) are running about playing. Last but not least, the smell is hideous and spreads over a big area.
  • Posted by user162427 December 02, 2013 at 07:08

    I am sure the downs is big enough not to trigger asthma, as for damage, well you make a point that bbqs are placed on hard standing bricks or stands, as for hot coals, I am sure parents will have the common sense to stop children playing next to it and pretty sure they wouldn't allow other peoples children playing within there group too. We have all this space up there and it's not used correctly. Another one for damage, do you honestly think that bbqs cause more damage than over 30 football teams playing there in the summer?
  • Posted by user515911 December 02, 2013 at 15:25

    Thanks neil2013. I can't agree though. I went to the Downs with my mum (who did have a breathing disorder), for a picnic treat, and we couldn't find any patch sufficiently unaffected by smoke (there were maybe a dozen barbecues, in the times before they were enforcing the byelaw); we just had to go home (upstairs flat, no garden). People by and large ignored suggestions of using stands. Also I've seen young children playing (I thought) dangerously close to barbecues, with (possibly inebriated) parents paying little attention. As regards the last point, I'm not saying that it causes more damage than other things, but that it adds to the damage. And there's no getting away from that hideous smell!
  • Posted by user162427 December 05, 2013 at 20:32

    Sorry to hear about that but come on, the downs is massive and you are telling me the entire area was covered in smoke?!!! I find that very hard to believe.
  • Posted by user515911 December 07, 2013 at 12:37

    It was some years back (my mother has since died), but we tried from St Monica's to Worrall Rd as I recall, with no smell-free area found. I remember it particularly because it was so disheartening. And that was while it was officially illegal!
  • Posted by user162427 December 11, 2013 at 10:39

    Sorry to hear about your loss, it just seems strange though that bbqs are allowed in every other park in Bristol except the downs. I just feel it will bring more people in and show how bristol can stick together in a happy family environment
  • Posted by user678301 December 20, 2013 at 22:33

    I'd much rather go the other way and get rid of the football pitches on the downs. This is the green heart of the city, let's not turn it into a free for all campsite.
  • Posted by user463519 January 09, 2014 at 21:47

    it would be good if a small part of the Downs could be developed as a botanical garden as in many cities around the world. I know the uni has its BG at the top o FCC Stoke Hill but it is a rather restricted area, far better to expand it a little to some formal planting on the downs.
  • Posted by user251846 January 15, 2014 at 14:02

    Barbecues are for the garden at home, not public spaces. They stink, and are messy. The Downs are fine as they are. I believe they are managed by a body other than Bristol City Council, so changes to the rules governing their use may be outside the Council's remit.
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