The Bristol Coddywomple took place at 6pm on Sunday 26th July 2020.

In the spring of 2020, after many months of cultural deprivation due to the pandemic, Gwen Hales (an experienced circus & street theatre performer & producer) had an idea. What if the unemployed and frustrated entertainers, who would usually be busy at festivals and events, performed in their own neighbourhoods? Maybe the city's residents, many of whom were confined to their houses or local areas with little to do, would welcome some fun & silly distractions?

And so, The Bristol Coddywomple was born. 


You can find out a bit more on this clip from BBC Points West that was broadcast the Friday before the event.

So, how did it go?

On Sunday 26th July 2020, at 6pm, across the city of Bristol, performers of many types stepped out of their front doors and, following pre-mapped and publicised routes, these Coddywomplers entertained their neighbours as they pass through. 


The streets were filled with music, circus and visual treats. Audiences watched from their windows and doorways, and some came outside to interact with the entertainers from their front yards and in the street.

Here are some facts & figures for you, sourced from our post-event surveys:

Over 50 performers took part!

We covered 8 postcode areas!

Estimated audience numbers of 1400 were reached.

Below are some photos of the event

Please remember, when viewing these photos, that the government guidelines at the time did not mandate mask-wearing, the rules about social distancing included groupings of up to 6 people outdoors, and a 'one metre plus' rule was introduced. The public engaging with the Coddywomplers seemed to be mainly household groupings and they respectfully maintained a level of distancing that seemed appropriate at the time (if not, they were encouraged to by the stewards). Performing groups & stewards were created from pre-existing household 'bubbles'.

With thanks to our Coddywompling photographers:
Harley Strong
Joe Rosser
Stefan Edwards
Tony Cullan
Vonalina Cake
+ our Coddywompling friends on social media.
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Instagram