Colston Hall
Colston Hall is a concert hall and grade II listed building situated on Colston Street, Bristol, England. A popular venue catering for a variety of different entertainers, it seats approximately 2,075 and provides licensed bars, a café and restaurant. The venue is owned by Bristol City Council, but from April 2011 it will be run by the independent Bristol Music Trust.

The site has been occupied by four buildings named as such since the 1860s. In the thirteenth century, the site was occupied by a Carmelite friary, known as Whitefriars. Subsequently, the location held a large Tudor-era mansion known as the Great House, used by Queen Elizabeth I in 1574 on a visit to the city. In 1707, Edward Colston established the Colston Boys' School in this building, which was acquired by the Colston Hall Company in 1861. Colston Hall opened as a concert venue on September 20, 1867. The architects were the prolific Bristol firm of Foster & Wood working in the Bristol Byzantine style. It has been designated by English Heritage as a grade II listed building. Most of the building was damaged during a fire on September 1, 1898; the auditorium suffered immense structural damage, and the interior was more or less destroyed. The second hall opened in 1901, and in 1919, the Corporation of Bristol purchased it from the Colston Hall Company. The City Council continues to manage the hall. The second hall was closed for remodelling in 1935. In December 1936, the third hall was opened. This survived the Luftwaffe air raids of the Second World War, but was burned down in 1945 after a discarded cigarette started a fire. The hall was rebuilt once more, and the fourth reopened in 1951 to mark the Festival of Britain. The first computerised booking system was installed in February 1983, and a £500,000 modernisation programme was conducted at the start of the 1990s, which included extensive rewiring, and various backstage improvements. The installation of removable seating in the front half of the stalls in 2005 improved the hall as a venue for pop concerts, providing space for fans to move around and dance in front of the stage; it also increased the overall capacity of the auditorium. Campaigners, many from the city’s Afro-Caribbean community, have called for the hall’s name to be changed because of Edward Colston’s link to the slave trade. The Bristol group Massive Attack vowed not to play at the venue while it retained its present name. The proposal sparked a heated controversy in the pages of the local press, although the majority of letters printed favoured retaining the Colston name. From 2007 to 2009, the Colston Hall underwent extensive refurbishment with the construction of a new foyer alongside the present building, topped by a wind turbine.

Artists who have performed at Colston Hall
The venue has played host to many well-known acts over the years, including:
  • a-ha - January 1987
  • America - November 2007
  • Tori Amos - March 1994 and March 1996
  • Joan Baez - October 1999 , January 2004 , March 2006 and October 2009
  • Count Basie
  • The Beatles - March 1963 and November 1964
  • Black Sabbath - February 1972, with Wild Turkey , December 1973 , October 1975 , May 1978, with Van Halen , May 1980 , January 1981 , September 1989, with Axxis and November 1995
  • Bob Marley & The Wailers
  • Michael Bolton - November 2010
  • David Bowie - February and October 1969 and June 1972
  • Alexandra Burke - January 2011
  • Depeche Mode - October 1982, September 1983, and October 1984
  • Dream Theater - October 2000, with The Porcupine Tree
  • Bob Dylan - May 1966 (He also used the Colston Hall to film the concert scenes for his 1987 film Hearts of Fire . )
  • Duke Ellington
  • Jimi Hendrix - November 1967
  • Guns N' Roses - October 1987
  • Iron Maiden - February 1981 and October 1986
  • JLS - February 2010
  • Elton John
  • Judas Priest - March 1980, with Iron Maiden
  • Led Zeppelin - June 1969 and January 1970
  • Motörhead - April and November 1979 , November 1980 , April 1982 , June 1983 , October 2003 , November 2004 , October 2005, with In Flames and Girlschool , November 2006 , November 2009, with The Damned and Girlschool and November 2010
  • Mott the Hoople - November 1973, with Queen
  • Ozzy Osbourne - 1980 and 1981
  • Pink Floyd - June 1966
  • Queen - November 1974, with Hustler and November 1975, with Mr Big
  • Lou Reed
  • The Rolling Stones - October 1966 (Three tracks from their album Got Live If You Want It! album were recorded at this concert) and 1971.
  • Kelly Rowland - September 2003
  • Roxy Music
  • The Saturdays - February 2011
  • The Strokes - January 2006
  • Thin Lizzy
  • U2 - March 1983
  • The Who - November 1968
  • Robbie Williams

Building Activity

  • removed a media
    about 6 years ago via