Thursday 9 June 2016

Underfall Boatyard and #TravleMassiveBristol My Night Out with Baby

Last night it was an absolute delight and a pleasure to attend my first ever #TravelMassiveBristol event and it did not disappoint. It was at the Underfall Yard in the new Vistor Centre.
When hubby and Aaron dropped me and Lottie off I never dreamed that as I walked away from the road I'd end up on such a picturesque corner of the harbour. I felt like I'd gone abroad for the evening. How appropriate to feel like that at a *travel* event!
Shortly after the above picture was taken we felt a few spots of rain so headed inside. The rain actually held off though, so that's two days in a row we've escaped the storm that London got and just had the humid heat alone that normally precedes it. So warm in fact that we stayed in the harbour till very late. Staggering back to a hotel room instead of making the journey home would be amazing.
I rushed to the networking event without having dinner, so I was delighted with the cafe within. It's called PICKLE (which was so cute as it is what we called lil lady baby bump until the 20 week scan - except it was the 25th week scan as that one was inconclusive). I actually had one of each of the savoury items you see below. So bursting with flavour I practically inhaled them!
Travel Massive, the Bristol chapter, has been set up by Heather Cowper and Jane Batt and they are both superb professional travel bloggers/vloggers, Jane at Practically Perfect Mums and Heather Cowper at Heather on her Travels. It's a case of watch this space as I think they are going to do great things, both personally and under the Travel Massive banner taking us all along for the ride. I love Heather's recent cruise video. Jane is quickly establishing herself as a travel blogger and vlogger. Having been a parent blogger, she's transitioning very well into family travel, with video her area of expertise as that was her profession pre-kids. kids being her 3 beautiful boys who often feature in her videos. When booking accommodation, you'll certainly get an honest appraisal of it if you first of all view Jane's video vlogs.
I went to the event with the intention of mingling with the travel industry and getting a night out. In reality, due to breastfeeding, I brought the baby with me. I knew I could get her to sleep and that I did, but it meant planting myself in a corner until she was sufficiently cuddled and fed, to be tucked up in her buggy for the evening. The wonderful Nicola (Project Director of Underfall Yard) set me up with a glass of cucumber water and I was right next to a bowl of kettle chips so I was sorted. Once she was in a deep sleep I purchased a basket of food from Pickle and ravenously tucked in, savouring every delicious bite, knowing it was good for me and baby. Fresh flavours that needed no seasoning.

I absolutely LOVED the venue for the evening. As above, the view and ambience was spectacular, but the inside is amazing too due to the history and importance of the power house and pump room.

If you visit the Underfall Boatyard you get to see
  • The Pump Room - 3 electric pumping engines that powered Bristol's hydraulic network for over 100 years. They still operate regularly for visitors.
  • The Accumulators - these huge weights are raised by pumps and descend to push water through the pipes at high pressure. You can see the accumulator in action when the pumps are operated.
  • The Patent Slip - Built in the 1890s the slip is used for hauling boats out of the water.
  • The Big Shed - used by maritime businesses. Not open to the public.
  • The Workshops - still in use by the Docks Engineer's Team.
  • The Sluice Room - the water level in the harbour is maintained from here. Also used to help clear silt (mud) from the harbour.

I haven't had a good old catch up with Gemma from Hello it's Gemma in YEARS, so I spent 80% of the evening chatting with her. This coincided with me eating my three food bits from Pickle, so sorry for all of my chomping Gemma, but breastfeeding don't half give me a very healthy appetite!
I spy us (and my buggy) here:

But as animated as our conversation was she was slightly distracted as she'd dropped her lens cap. I said if I could find my Mum's contact lens when I was little we will find it. Luckily she did! I was quick to catch her joy on camera :-) A picture that also highlights the rustic and authentic charm of the venue. It's not a place that will be booking decorators anytime soon. You feel like you've stepped into a real life piece of history the minute you enter.
One of the things Gemma is REALLY passionate about is the street art in Bristol. She's also extremely knowledgeable on the topic and has made me want to get out and track down all the art. Really looking forward to visiting North Street now! She also told me about Upfest, which I'd previously never heard of and it sounds AMAZING! Luckily the lady from Bristol Street Art Tours was at our networking event last night, so we chatted with her. 100% I will now attend one of their tours! They're at Where The
 I was absolutely fascinated to hear how the street art gets painted over. What a fab way of keeping the art alive, fresh, colourful and current. No wonder the Bristol Street Art Tours has "inspirational fun all Summer long" as their tag line. Also means up and coming artists can get a look in. They assured me that the art gets documented and curated before it's lost forever. I can see me becoming a bit of an addict now. I already always take a pic of street art whenever we are lucky enough to encounter any on our travels.

I always love to catch up with Jane and it's been far far too long. I was gutted to miss the first Travel Massive Bristol event so made sure I attended this one.
I am so pleased that Jane and Heather have set up a Travel Massive in Bristol and I can see them doing great things. I got a lil insight into what they have in mind as I joined them at the pub while waiting to cadge a lift home with Jane:
So tranquil was the setting and it was such a balmy warm night, it was after eleven o'clock when us three girls said goodbye to the harbour. I said more of a "see you again" than a "goodbye" as I will definitely return. You can see the Underfall Yard in the distance, our view as we called it a night. I most certainly felt as if I had been on holiday even if it was only for a few wee hours.
Bristol certainly deserves its place as one of the best cities in the UK.

Find out more about Underfall Boatyard here.

If you are a member of the travel industry and would like to work together you can email me here. Thank you.

I have edited my footage from last night and got it live on You Tube at last:


  1. Fabulous post and you've put it together so quickly too. Very impressive with a babe and a boy to work around. Thanks for your lovely comments and links to my site and Youtube channel. I'll be getting big headed at this rate. Great to see you last night and you're right. It's been far too long xx

  2. Great to see you and thanks for the lovely article

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  4. Last night it was an absolute delight and a pleasure to attend my first ever TravelMassiveBristol event and it did not disappoint. Luton Airport Car Parking


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