Bristol Culture

Bristol archive building, surrounded by greenery and the river.

Bristol Culture is one of 10 UK-wide partners who are helping save the nation’s sounds as part of the Unlocking Our Sound Heritage project.

Published date:

Bristol Archives, part of Bristol City Council’s Culture & Creative Industries team, is proud to be the home of the Unlocking Our Sound Heritage hub for South West England. In our Sound Room we are digitising collections from:

  • Bristol Archives
  • Bristol Libraries
  • Corinium Museum
  • Devon Heritage Centre
  • Gloucestershire Archives
  • Island Archives Guernsey
  • Kresen Kernow
  • Museum in the Park Stroud
  • North Devon Record Office
  • Somerset Archives and Local Studies
  • Telegraph Museum Porthcurno
  • University of Bristol Theatre Collection


Largely consisting of oral history, these diverse collections from across the area combine to shed light on the lived experience of local people over the last 100 years. Stand out collections include (but are by no means limited to):

  • Bristol Archives’ British Empire and Commonwealth Collection oral histories - This important collection captures 20th-century memories of people living and working across the British Empire and Commonwealth.
  • Bristol Libraries’ Bristol People’s Oral History Project - Collected by Steven Humphries for a PhD project, it’s a stunning record of working class childhood and youth in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
  • Gloucestershire Archives’ Cotswold Roundabout - Hospital Radio programs recorded from 1960s1980s featuring local news, dialect, music, arts, culture and social interest.
  • Island Archives Guernsey’s oral histories - This intriguing collection features interviews with islanders about the German occupation of Guernsey during World War Two.
  • Somerset Archives and Local Studies’ Exmoor Oral History - Over 200 interviews capture life on Exmoor in the 20th century.
  • Kresen Kernow’s Cornish Audio Visual Archive - A wide ranging oral history collection covering agriculture, brass bands, geographical communities, identity, kinship, mining, politics and religion and featuring Cornish language interviews.
  • Devon Heritage Centre’s Dartington Hall Michael Chekhov and Deirdre Hurst du Prey archives - Recordings from the 1970s1990s that include Michael Checkhov’s lectures, interviews and radio broadcasts relating to acting techniques methods, theatre, and the work of other directors and performers.
  • Telegraph Museum Porthcurno’s Cable and Wireless Collection - Various interviews with Cable and Wireless staff and partners detail the history and importance of this ground-breaking site.


Find out more about the Bristol Culture Unlocking Our Sound Heritage hub here:


Contact email:

Blog: Unlocking Our Sound Heritage Archives - Bristol Museums

Twitter: @bristolarchives


Instagram/Facebook page: @bristolmuseums / @bristolarchives

Compressed magenta sound-wave graphic. Logo for Unlocking Our Sound Heritage. National Lottery Heritage Fund crossed fingers logo


Unlocking Our Sound Heritage

Unlocking our Sound Heritage is a UK-wide project that will help save the nation’s sounds and open them up to everyone.

All projects