Historic Properties: City Centre (Redcliffe and Temple)
Redcliffe Wharf, Off Redcliffe Way, Bristol. BS1 6SW
Redcliffe Caves are man made caves in the Redcliffe area of Bristol, close to St Mary Redcliffe church. Much of their history is vague but French and Spanish prisoners were held there in the 18th century. The caves are only open on certain event days such as the Bristol Doors Open Day in September and for guided tours.
It is believed that most of the caves were created by mining from the 15th century although there is mention of the caves recorded in 1346 when a hermit was placed in them to pray for his benefactor Lord Thomas Berkely. There's also stories of smugglers using the caves but alas unproved. In Redcliffe and the surrounding areas in the early 16th century there were many tall brick kilns used to make glass and pottery. The sand from these caves produced a brown/green glass that was used to make thick glass bottles. The sand was also used for ship's ballast.
Later on they were used for the storage of goods brought into port. In 1868 the caves were sold to the Midland Railway company who built brick railway style arches inside to prevent collapse. They also built a tunnel through the caves from Temple Meads railway station to the floating harbour.
The caves are only open on certain event days such as the Bristol Doors Open Day in September, the Bristol Film Festival and the Bristol Festival of Literature.
Free Entry at Certain Times.
No easily accessible wifi. Designated smoking areas only.
Only open on certain event days such as the Bristol Doors Open Day in September, the Bristol Film Festival and the Bristol Festival of Literature, and for occasional guided tours.
Advance booking available.
Located to the south east of the city centre off Redcliffe Way, on the south east side of harbourside.
Bristol Temple Meads railway station: Ten minutes walk.
Parking available nearby - payment required.
Redcliffe Caves, Redcliffe Wharf, Off Redcliffe Way, Bristol. BS1 6SW
Last Updated Monday 17 February 2020
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