Our History

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Following World War 1, Boys’ Clubs formed to keep a sense of comradely for those who had served in the war. The vast majority of boys had left formal education at the age of14 and began life in employment. To many, the street were the only place available to socialise once they had finished work, which became seen as a social problem.

The Boys Clubs from across the city signed the original document forming the Bristol & District Federation of Boys Clubs in a building in Nelson Street, just 50 yards away from the current office.

Women over 21 achieved the same voting rights as men through the Equal Franchise Act

The first ‘Talkie’ is shown in Britain.

Mickey Mouse is created at the Walt Disney Studio



Thorpe Bannister was appointed as the first full-time General Secretary of the Federation.


King Edward VIII abdicates over his relationship with an American divorcee, Wallis Simpson.


Despite numerous obstacles, Boys’ Clubs continued strongly through World War 2 and contributed towards the war. Many of the club members became involved with fire watching duties across the city during the war.

Germany invades Poland and the UK declares War.



Thorpe Bannister seconded to work for the war office and Ted Higgins was appointed as his successor.


Germany surrenders on 8 May.

Labour leader Clement Atlee wins landslide election victory.

The UK becomes a permanent member of the UN Security Council.


Ted Higgins took on the role of National Training Officer for the National Association of Boys Clubs and Fred Semwin was appointed as his successor at the Bristol & District Federation of Boys Clubs with Chris Wilcox as his assistant.


The National Health Service is established.

The liner ‘SS Empire Windrush’ docked at Tilbury carrying nearly 500 Caribbean people to Britain.



Fred Semwin stepped down and Chris Wilcox was appointed General Secretary of the Bristol & District Federation of Boys Clubs on the 1st April, Chris was in the role for 35 years.


Commercial television starts with the first ITV broadcast.


Hartcliffe Boys Club was opened in Murford Avenue and Ernie Curtis was appointed leader. Jack Clarke was the Chairman of the new club and he was also appointed Chairman of the Federation, a position he held until 1981.


Blue Peter first broadcast on TV.


The Albemarle Report was published by the Government, which recommended that central and local government funds should be made available to build new clubs across the country. A number of new clubs were built in Bristol over the next few years, including Bedminster Down Boys Club, Sea Mills Boys & Girls Club, Filwood Boys Club, Ashton Vale Club for Young People, Bristol Five Boys Club (Harry Crook Youth Activity Centre), Black Horse Boys Club and Teyfant Boys Club.


The Oral Contraceptive Pill was first introduced in the UK.


Match of the Day starts on BBC2


The Comprehensive education system is initiated.


England wins the football World Cup.


Abortion and Homosexuality are legalised.


The first man walks on the Moon.

The voting age is lowered from 21 to 18.



Decimalised currency replaces ‘pounds, shillings and pence’.


Avon Country Council was formed and the name of the Fed was changed to The Avon & Bristol Federation of Boys’ Clubs.


Sony introduces the Walkman.


Jack Clarke steps down as Chairman to become President of Avon & Bristol Federation of Boys Clubs and is succeeded by Jay Tidmarsh.


Racial tensions spark riots in Brixton and other areas including Bristol.


Smile emoji said to have been used for the first time.

Channel 4 TV station launched.


The Fed embarked upon a new project to build an inner city club linked with Broadplain Boys Club and the Sports Council to build the Broadplain & Riverside Youth Project, which was opened by the Duchess of Kent.


The Federation celebrated its Diamond Jubilee and the Diamond Jubilee Appeal raises the £100,000 endowment which pays for the employment of the Federation Activities Officer.

Chris Wilcox MBE JP retires and Trevor Jones is appointed as General Secretary.


The Federation receives on loan a Sportsmobile, sponsored by Grand Metropolitan which acted as a mobile youth club.

The Berlin Wall is torn down.



With funding from HTV Telathon the Federation purchases its own Mercedes Van called the Roadshow which carries on the work of the mobile youth club.

The Fed receives funding from Avon County Council to appoint a Girls worker.

Tim Berners-Lee invents the World Wide Web.


The Fed buys its own office at 113 Parson Street, moving from Clock Tower Yard in the city centre.


The Fed votes to formally start working with girls as well as boys, and the name of the organisation is changed to the Avon & Bristol Federation of Clubs for Young People.

The first item is sold on amazon.com.


The County of Avon is dissolved and is replaced by the four unitary authorities of Bristol, North Somerset, Bath & North East Somerset and South Gloucestershire.


The Fed receives funding to start the Bristol Young Volunteer project.

Harry Potter & The Philosophers Stone is published.


The Fed is funded to run Millennium Volunteers in the Avon area and also receives funding from the National Lottery to continue the Bristol Young Volunteer project.



The Fed became Young Bristol and Pooles Wharf was opened by the Duchess of Gloucester.

World population crosses the 6 billion mark.


iPod launched by Apple.


Young Bristol is funded to deliver a Youth Accreditation Programme by the Society of Merchant Venturers.


Facebook goes live.


Civil partnerships give same-sex couples legal rights.


The first iPhone is released.


Millennium Volunteers finishes but is succeeded by V for Volunteering which Young Bristol is funded to deliver in Bristol and South Gloucestershire.


Young Bristol leads the Bristol Application of the National MyPlace Programme, to build a world class central youth centre and secures £5 million to build what is now the Station.


Trevor Jones MBE retires from the position of Chief Executive Young Bristol and is succeeded by Steve Smith.

Young Bristol is involved in the original pilot of the National Citizen Service, a government funded programme for 16-17 year old.


Local Authority withdrew all funding to Young Bristol and Community Youth Clubs.

Young Bristol sells Parson Street and moves into its current premises at The Station.

Britain hosts the 2012 Summer Olympics and Paralympics to widespread international acclaim.

Queen Elizabeth II celebrates her Diamond Jubilee.


The Outdoor Activity Instructor Training Scheme pilot launches – the first of its kinds in the South West – with the Creative Programme launching later in the year.



Anton Boari steps down and Lee Williams becomes Chief Executive.


Political crisis after voters in a referendum opt to quit the European Union. David Cameron resigns and is succeeded as Prime Minister by his home secretary, Theresa May.


Early elections, called by Prime Minister Theresa May to strength her hand in negotiating Britain’s exit from the European Union, results in a hung parliament and a fragile Conservative minority government, kept in office by an agreement with the main pro-British party in Northern Ireland, the Democratic Unionists.

Bank of England introduces the ‘plastic Jane’ £10 note.


Young Bristol celebrates its 90th Anniversary, raising £90,000 to purchase a mobile youth provision in the Youth Bus for Young Bristol campaign.

Young Bristol becomes part of the Targeted Youth Service consortium to lead on providing youth services across Bristol.


Young Bristol launches the Youth Club on Wheels. 



The world sees the start of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, sending the UK into multiple national lockdowns during 2020.  

Young Bristol is awarded, The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service, the highest award a voluntary group can receive in the UK.


Young Bristol’s Offices move back into the community to the BS14 Youth Centre in Stockwood. 


The death of Her Majesty The Queen is announced on Thursday 8th September 2022.


King Charles III is announced as the new monarch.

Supporting the Wider Community

Holiday Clubs

Youth Club on Wheels

Young people smiling at Community Youth Clubs

Community Youth Clubs

Young people gorgewalking

The Respect Project

Young people on Youth Voice residential

Youth Voice

Training Courses for Young People

Kayak Club

Outdoor Activities

Outdoor Employment Programme

Young people taking part in graffiti session

Creative Programme