Bristol Bus Boycott: Mural set to mark 60th anniversary

A photo of an unfinished muralJulz Davis

A street art mural has been created to honour the people behind the Bristol Bus Boycott on its 60th anniversary.

The artwork adorns a wall on Jamaica Street in the city and is due to be finished later.

Its completion kicks off a series of events being held to mark the boycott, which took place in 1963.

The boycott began in response to the then Bristol Omnibus Company’s refusal to hire black workers, after Guy Bailey had been refused a job interview.

After months of protests, the bus firm backed down and the campaign paved the way for the Race Relations Act 1965 – the UK’s first piece of legislation to address racial discrimination.

Three men standing in front of the mural

Julz Davis

The mural is being created as part of the Big Bristol Bus Boycott Takeover – a celebration of the 60th anniversary “in 60 ways”, organised by charity Curiosity UnLtd.

Along with Mr Bailey, the mural celebrate the other pioneers of the boycott, Roy Hackett, Paul Stephenson, Audley Evans, Owen Henry and Prince Brown.

Local artists Oshii, Miss Roots and Kya Beers have been working on its design in collaboration with the Peoples Republic of Stokes Croft.

A photo of an unfinished mural

Julz Davis

“The images that we use are very bright, bold, and in your face”, said Julz Davis, from Curiosity UnLtd, who described the mural as a deconstructed image of a bus.

“It will help to empower, educate and inform at the same time. Bristol is a city of radical changemakers.

“In a year of many anniversaries, the Bristol Bus Boycott stands heads and shoulders above the rest.”

The Big Bristol Bus Boycott series kicks off ahead of Jamaican Independence Day on Sunday.

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