For #FoodFriday, Charlee Bennett from Bristol and Bath Parks Foundation talks us through some of the fabulous food and drink to be found in Bristol’s parks.

I’m lucky to spend a lot of time in our wonderful parks across the city that have been such a haven for so many of us. Having recently moved to the area, I am constantly discovering new green spaces as well as getting to know Bristol’s food scene. Fresh air certainly gives me an appetite!

Charlee Bennett from Bristol and Bath Parks Foundation

The Courtyard Café – Ashton Court Estate

I’m a runner and after a few loops of the wonderful Ashton Court Estate, I enjoy replenishing my carbs at the Courtyard Cafe – the Victoria Sponge being a particular favourite! It’s a great stop off for hungry walkers, mountain bikers and golfers alike.

Hopper Coffee – Greville Smyth Park

To give me that extra burst of energy I love to grab a coffee from Hopper Coffee in Greville Smyth Park. Operating out of an iconic Piaggeo Apé it’s shortly to be the ‘Guardian’ of our two-minute litter pick station in the park.

Stuffed – Victoria Park

Victoria Park is a brilliant park in south Bristol with a proactive Friends Group and lots of space to picnic and for my dog Boots to play. Look out for the reappearance of ‘Stuffed’, the orange Citroen café van with its freshly made sandwiches and tempting cakes.

The Star and Dove – Victoria Park

The Star and Dove on the Totterdown side of Victoria Park is a pub brimming with character and delicious food. The team strive to find the best UK seasonal ingredients and locally sourced produce. Its restaurant is a must visit for a hearty Sunday lunch, followed by a brisk walk in the park!

The Cauldron – Mina Park

The eateries around Mina Park, St Werburghs are a delight to discover. It’s a vital green space for the community with a passionate Friends of the Park Group. The spicy aromas will lead your nose to one of the nearby restaurants.  I’m hoping to visit The Cauldron again soon with its mouthwatering creative cooking including vegetarian dishes, such as polenta with roast assorted allotment!

Breaking Bread – The Downs

It was great to see the Breaking Bread tented eateries appear up on the Downs during lockdown. Representing some of Bristol’s finest cooking from The Pony & Trap, Pasta Loco and Pasta Ripiena, it’s another fine example of Bristol innovation and a wonderful green space to watch the sun go down.

About the author

Charlee Bennett is Director of Bristol and Bath Parks Foundation. Previously Chief Executive at CPRE (Campaign for Protection of Rural England) Hampshire, Charlee is passionate about connecting people to their parks and green space. She leads the Foundation’s Your Park programme encouraging people to join together to make parks better places to meet, play, learn, grow, breathe and enjoy nature. Keep up with Your Park on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter and you can find Charlee on Twitter too.  

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The Courtyard Café at Ashton Court
The Courtyard Café at Ashton Court

Housed in the mansion’s former stables, the café has recently revamped its menu to focus on organic whole food, quality teas and coffees and healthy treats for kids.