A very silly look ahead at 2023 in BristolPosted on: 23 Dec 2022
The team at 365Bristol thought we'd sign off 2022 with a satirical look at what we think will transpire in the weird and wonderful world of Bristol next year.
From Bristol underground plans to the Clean Air Zone, we've taken some often very serious topics affecting our city and given them a fun (and often ridiculous) spin with K-pop, Stokes Croft, tanks and gimps all featured.
Please, make a cup of tea and enjoy our definitely serious predictions for Bristol in 2023...
Marvin Rees and Dan Norris take part in a charity boxing match
It’s been well documented that the relationship between outgoing Bristol mayor Marvin Rees and West of England Metro Mayor has proved somewhat uneasy thus far. That’s why we believe the two Labour representatives will finally decide to settle their differences once and for all with a charity boxing match. Perhaps the epic match-up could even take place at Bristol’s majestic YTL Arena, oh wait...
Bristol Arena to be imported amid logistical woes
By mid-2023 Bristol Arena’s completion date will be pushed back to 2045 due to a lack of materials, funds, interest or popular support. At this point, over half of Bristol’s population will have been imported from London – so the decision is taken to do the same with the Arena.
A team of ten helicopters will scoop up the chosen theatre, Shakespeare’s Globe in Southwark, using a specialised giant spatula. The Globe will then be deposited in Filton, going on to only ever be used once – for the nearby Filton Hill Primary School’s nativity play.
Big Jeff-driven underground bus system gets go-ahead
There has been much talk recently about a proposed underground rail network in Bristol (Marvin has recently announced that an extra £15 million is set to be spent on planning) and there has also been a great deal of disgruntlement over the current state of the city’s first bus service.
So, we believe that Bristol City Council will make the incredibly wise decision of combining the two issues with underground bus tunnels linking up everywhere from Bristol Airport to Arnos Vale, Southmead Hospital to St George.
This will, hopefully, placate all Bristolians with grievances about the current state of the city’s public transport and, just to make sure, much-loved local gig-goer and artist Big Jeff - he could even design the buses!
Merchant Venturers return much loved Stokes Croft landmark to former glory
Back in October, it was almost impossible for Bristolians to log onto social media without seeing people's anger at the removal of one of the city’s most historical landmarks - Turbo Island. Now tarmacked over with no apparent plans to develop it, the iconic Stokes Croft monument is in limbo with locals still regularly warming themselves up with makeshift fires.
However, in 2023, an unlikely hero will come swooping down to save Turbo Island, ripping up the concrete and maybe even building an official fire pit. The Society of Merchant Venturers, a philanthropic organisation made up of wealthy individuals with absolutely no oversight, will attempt to hush any murmurings of discontent by returning Turbo Island (which let’s be honest, they probably own) to its former glory.
Colston statue accidentally replaced with a statue of Richard Whitemoney
In April of 2023, the council will take action to replace the statue of Edward Colston – a slave trader whose statue was toppled by activists in June 2020. Unfortunately, due to a clerical oversight, the statue that Colston will be replaced with is one of Richard Whitemoney – another prominent 1600s slave trader.
A spokesperson for the council called the statue “a complete accident”, adding “who knew Bristol had such a chequered past?”
With the city up in arms about the new statue, the council will quickly hire a group of activists to dispose of the statue in the harbour. The statue is to be replaced by one of an unidentified Golden Retriever. “You can’t cancel an anonymous dog”, the spokesperson said. “I hope.”
Military enthusiasts find loophole in Clean Air Zone
Whatever you think about Bristol’s new Clean Air Zone (the new City Centre scheme to help Bristol meet the government’s legal limits for pollution), no one can deny that it has made travelling around the city a lot more difficult.
We predict that 2023 will see a few keen-eyed driving enthusiasts will notice a clause in the rules that exempt military vehicles from the Clean Air Zone. As a result of this it will become a common sight in Bristol - always a trend-setting city - to see hoards of tanks rolling past Cabot Circus.
Bristol punks IDLES sing K-pop
Bristol Sounds has become a staple of the city’s rich musical tapestry with the likes of Noel Gallagher, Paulo Nutini and Craig David all playing triumphant sets in recent years. However, like every good music festival, organisers are always striving for bigger and better things.
Caught between booking a certain commercial success in the shape of a K-pop band in the mould of BTS or BLACKPINK or an energetic homecoming show from Bristol punks IDLES, an ambitious Bristol Sounds employee will conjure up a genius scheme.
As K-pop icons are often referred to as ‘idols’, Bristol’s own IDLES are commissioned to perform an hour-long set of K-pop covers, leading to a very confusing day out for Bristolian music fans and BTS stans alike when the festival comes around in June.
Crazed masked singer terrifies Somerset locals
Over the past few years, residents of Yatton and the surrounding area have lived in fear of a latex-clad spectre, labelled the ‘Somerset Gimp’ or the ‘grunting gimp’. However, an individual has now been arrested on suspicion of being a public nuisance and we believe that he has a strange story to tell.
2023 will see the man admit to the crime, stating that he is an escaped contestant of the popular ITV television series The Masked Singer, who was driven completely mad by his confining costume (and Jonathan Ross) and escaped the show’s Hertfordshire studio, damned to roam the British countryside in his perverted costume forever more.
Obscure local republic joins EU
I know we’ve all probably had enough of discussing leaving and joining the EU, however, this might be of interest to Bristolians as well as making some areas of the city very jealous indeed.
After years of secret negotiations at their Jamaica Street base, the People’s Republic of Stokes Croft will declare themselves officially independent in 2023, becoming a European Union member state in the process. We reckon they’ll need a well-deserved pint at The Bell after all that hard work!
UWE study uncovers the true identity of Banksy
World-famous street artist Banksy is probably Bristol’s favourite son thanks to his distinctive style and political activism. Banksy’s identity still remains a mystery with Massive Attack’s Robert Del Naja and former Art Attack presenter Neil Buchanan two high-profile suggestions.
However, we in Bristol all know someone who claims to know the iconic artist’s true identity and a 2023 study from the University of the West of England will finally put these claims to bed. Indeed, in a jaw-dropping change of events results of the study will prove that 1 in 3 Bristolians are, in fact, Banksy.
Patrick is a filmmaker with so much Bristol in his blood the white blood cells are graffiti'd. Educated at the Northern Film School in Leeds, he’s returned home to be a Videographer and Reviewer for 365Bristol and BARBI. When he’s not messing about with cameras, he enjoys playing guitar, spending far too much time on tabletop RPGs, and being an awful snob about cider. Have a look at his work here, or get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org.