Then and Now – Avon Gorge

This is a regular series of blogs about photographs of the same place taken years apart.

I quite like those Then and Now comparison photographs that you see in books or on the Twitter or Facebook.

I always think I should give them a go. However what I have started to notice is that I have been doing Then and Now photographs unintentionally over the years and have been taking photographs of the same thing or place from the same view or perspective years apart.  The first instance of this that I noticed was in May 2019 when I went to  Manchester.

It only really came to my attention that I was doing this a lot, when checking the Places function on the Apple Photos Mac App that I could see I had taken the same photograph of the same thing just years apart!

The Clifton Suspension Bridge is an iconic image of Bristol, however these photographs were taken from the southern end of the bridge looking down the Avon Gorge.

This was the shot I took back in August 2006.

This is the same view nine years later in August  2015

Then there is another shot of the same view, taken in August 2018.

I am not a number…

Over the weekend, taking advantage of the good weather we went for a picnic on the Downs in Bristol. As well as having some nice food and fun in the sun, we also took the opportunity to hunt down some more of the Shaun the Sheeps dotted across the city. A previous post shows the Shauns we found on the Downs, and there is a page with all the Shauns we have seen so far.

After venturing from the Downs and down Whiteladies Road, we parked in Clifton Village. As it was Sunday it was easy and free to find parking, we ventured over the first of the Shauns, 23. Bloomin’ Gorge-ous which sits on the grass on the other side of the road to Christ Church.

23. Bloomin' Gorge-ous

Looking up at the butterfly on his head, this is quite a calming Shaun. We liked the flowers growing up his legs.

23. Bloomin' Gorge-ous

Then we hiked over the Suspension Bridge to find 18. Isambaaard guarding one side of the suspension bridge, complete with Brunel’s quintessential top hat.

18. Isambaaard

Back over the bridge and climb up quite a steep path to the Clifton Observatory to find 19. A Sheep’s Eye View. Another shade of blue this one, with the kinds of views you would expect from the Observatory painted on the side. This Shaun had a watering can and a flower, no idea why.

19. A Sheep’s Eye View

There are some fantastic views of Bristol and the Suspension Bridge from the Clifton Observatory, so the (short) steep climb is worthwhile. We were tempted to go into the Observatory and down into the caves, but we were on a mission to find more Shauns, so back down the steep path and a short walk to Sion Hill. Here was 20. Baa-lloon!

20. Baa-lloon!

Covered in flying hot air balloons, this Shaun celebrates the annual International Bristol Balloon Fiesta (which takes place from today (6th August)).

20. Baa-lloon!

20. Baa-lloon!

The next Shaun was on the Terrace of the Avon Gorge Hotel, 21. Wish Ewe Were Here. Quite challenging to find and take a photograph as the Terrace was packed with people enjoying a drink in the warm afternoon sun.

21. Wish Ewe Were Here

The Mall Gardens, which after working out how to get in we found 22. The Shear Speed Helter Skelter.

22. The Shear Speed Helter Skelter

With a classic funfair look, this was cleverly done.

22. The Shear Speed Helter Skelter

22. The Shear Speed Helter Skelter

There are two more Shauns in the Ashton Court Estate, which we didn’t get to, mainly as it was getting late, we were getting tired, and to be honest we’ll probably make a day of it visiting Ashton Course some time (or visit them during the Balloon Fiesta at the weekend.