Located in the heart of Bristol, The Mount Without is a charming multi-purpose events venue, but it actually started its life out as a church in the early 12th century. It’s believed that the original church was founded around 1147, and it was named ‘The Mount Without’ because it was first built outside of the city’s walls. Considering the venue has survived multiple bomb explosions in World War Two and a catastrophic fire in 2016, it’s safe to say that the venue has certainly stood the test of time.
The converted church is a 20-minute walk from the Bristol Temple Meads train station and a quick five-minute stroll from the city’s main bus station. There are no parking facilities at the venue, but it’s centrally located, so you shouldn’t have trouble getting there. The venue can be found on the edge of the University of Bristol, and visitors are encouraged to take a leisurely walk around the beautiful Royal Fort Gardens situated just a stone’s throw from the building.
Facts, Curiosities and Interesting Things about The Mount Without
1. WW2 tried to claim The Mount Without twice
During World War Two, the German Luftwaffe devastated Bristol. In 1940, as incessant bombing raids wreaked havoc on the city, a 1000lb bomb was dropped straight through the church’s rafters and caused serious damage. A year later, an incendiary device set fire to the roof, causing further destruction. Once the war came to an end, the church was quickly repaired and the congregation soon returned to their usual proceedings (keep calm and carry on and all that).
2. A fire left the buildings in ruins (again)
By the late 1990s, the church’s congregation was dwindling, and the building finally closed its doors in 1999. Squatters quickly claimed the venue as their home, and one wrongdoer set fire to the building, causing an enormous blaze which took 50 fire fighters to put out. A few years later, the current owners decided to take on the challenge of restoring this abandoned site to its former glory by creating the hybrid events venue that we see today.
3. The church would provide sweet treats to the local community
Before the church’s permanent closure, there was a beloved tradition where the congregation would distribute delicious Colston buns to local children on Easter Sunday. These sweet buns are usually flavoured with dried fruit and glazed in a sugary syrup, so they were a huge crowd pleaser for the younger kids as well as the adults with a sweet tooth.
What can you do at The Mount Without?
Every month, The Mount Without run a series of interesting exhibitions inside this venue’s stunning space. From abstract art to physical theatre, these exhibitions aim to push boundaries and broaden the mind, and many local artists are celebrated here.
What’s more, The Mount Without often hosts live music performances inside this breathtaking setting. The crumbling, scarred walls of the interior and the chilling crypt located underground add to the character of this historic building, making it an enchanting venue to host live events in. Many local bands have graced the stage here, giving locals the chance to hear music from the up-and-coming talents of their hometown.
With its stained glass windows and columned central throughway, The Mount Without is a beautiful spot perfect for any event. The magical Candlelight series has graced this wonderful venue multiple times with spectacular live music performances and the warm glow from thousands of candles. As we wait for more Candlelight concerts to be announced here, you can check out the other breathtaking venues in Bristol that are hosting these unforgettable concerts.