Blog: Felix Road turns 50 in style

30 Sep, 2022
On Sunday 25 September 2022 Felix Road Adventure Playground celebrated its 50th birthday, here are Tom's reflections on the day.

On Sunday 25 September 2022 Felix Road Adventure Playground celebrated its 50th birthday. This much loved Bristol gem, which is now managed and run by Eastside Community Trust, has been a vital community space for thousands of children and generations of families in Easton. The birthday party was the highlight of a year of events and WOW what a party we all had!  

Over 1200 people of all ages, from toddlers to grandparents came along throughout the day to show their love for Felix Road. There were children who played at Felix Road when it first opened in 1972 including Norman Pascoe and the author Beverley Douglas who gave a live reading from her book ‘Cutie’ (still on sale at Easton Community Centre) describing her childhood at Felix Road.  

There were touching reunions taking place everywhere. Steve Hodges one of the first play workers was there as well as play workers from the 80’s 90’s 2000’s and lots of children now adults who fondly remembered their time at ‘Ventures’. Past members of the committee including George Ferguson, Esme Davis and Morowa Selasie made moving and heart-warming speeches and Garfield Martin and Carol Williams’s family paid tribute to the amazing impact she had as a play worker at Felix.  

As always at every event in Felix Road’s history the food was incredible, all the 600+ children ate for free. Our very own food magician Nirmal and her hard working team, along with Ashley the one and only Jerk King, fed the huge crowds all day with delicious curries, kebabs, cake and of course jerk chicken!  

The oldest remaining part of Felix Road is the stage and the entertainment was lively and entertaining! The Flying Seagulls Project compered a raucous and high paced children’s talent show, Private Joys got funky in the late afternoon and the finale was a spectacular performance by Bhangra dancers and coloured smoke. In the play building, there was an exhibition of Felix Road’s history, printmaking workshop for children and a fortune teller playfully predicting children’s futures. 

The event was a mega community mashup, an incredible multi-cultural celebration of Felix Road’s past, present and future. Eastside Community Trust would like to thank everyone from the community who came, young and old, some returning from far away, who joined in the love for Felix Road. We are already planning the party for the playground’s 60th birthday! 

We had so many beautiful comments from people that we could include if we had the space but hopefully this one we have chosen captures everything that Felix has been to so many people over so many years. 

‘’I’m so happy to see this place rising! To see so many familiar and happy faces……to have a place like this in Easton, it actually saved my life! When I was a mum with three cheeky kids we came here a lot! Good times and good memories! Big Love XXX” 

by Tom Williams

A selection of photographs from the day, taken by Adam Whitmore

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