Bristol is a great city, a city we can rightly be proud of (it’s made C&T what it is). But it has some big challenges. One of them is housing. We launched the No Fixed Abode campaign earlier this month, and plan to utilise social media and a series of media stunts to raise awareness and stir the pot ahead of May’s council and mayoral elections here in Bristol.
135 people slept rough in Bristol last night. Thousands of young people are sofa surfing, staying with friends because they can’t find an affordable home of their own. Thousands more people commute miles to work here because they can’t afford to live where they work.
Bristol needs more than 16,000 affordable homes to meet demand. Bristol City Council built 30 of these last year, and own more than 500 buildings currently standing empty.
Hence our installation of Hollywood-style numbers on College Green at rush hour this morning, ahead of a full meeting of the council tonight. It turned heads and attracted the local media. Mission accomplished.
Now is the time to raise public awareness of the crisis, and ask the sort of questions that prospective policy-makers and public servants can’t ignore.
No Fixed Abode has no political affiliations, but we do want people to vote for a solution to Bristol’s housing crisis. We want to make sure the right people are there to fuel the debate, or that they are conspicuous by their absence. Those in positions of responsibility, power and influence, and those who want to be, need to have some answers.