Bristol’s Old Market named second coolest place to live in UK by Sunday Times – here’s why

On Monday The Sunday Times released its annual list of the coolest places to live in the UK – the places it deems the most highly sought after destinations to call home.

While Bristol is no stranger to such accolades, the area of the city which stars in The Sunday Times’ rundown will no doubt have taken plenty of people by surprise.


Fantastic bars and pubs

One of the best things about Old Market without question is its selection of bars, with plenty of options in a relatively small area. The fantastic Old Market Assembly, which opened at the tail end of 2015, acted as a catalyst for other businesses to follow suit.

The spacious bar, which also includes the brilliant Wardrobe Theatre as well its own bakery, is from the same team behind The Canteen in Stokes Croft – another cultural hub which opened bang in the middle of a once-troubled area – and attracts people all over the city.

To The Moon, meanwhile, just off the main road on Midland Road, is a quaint and cosy venue selling a range of locally-sourced drinks and delicious cocktails, while the newly-opened Elmers Arms again offers something different, specialising in real ales and real soul music.

If you want a more traditional pub you’re also not short of options. There’s the newly-renovated Punchbowl, The Old Market Tavern, The Stag and Hounds and of course The Volunteer Tavern just around the corner, which is arguably one of the city’s finest neighbourhood boozers.

  Trinity Centre 

Live music

If you’re partial to a bit of live music, Old Market has you covered. The Trinity Centre, which recently announced that its future has been secured, is one of the city’s most unique live music venues and welcomes an array of live bands and DJ nights. At the other end of the stretch there’s Exchange, which is currently trying to become the city’s first community-owned music venue, which hosts the best up-and-coming acts around.

On top of that both The Old Market Assembly and The Stag and Hounds are also home to live music, so across the four venues there’s most definitely something to appease everyone’s musical tastes.

25a Old Market takes its booze as seriously as its coffee
25a Old Market

Top notch coffee

If you’re in need of a pick me up, some of the best coffee in Bristol can be found in Old Market. One of the finest places to grab a brew is Alex Does Coffee, headed up by – you guessed it – a coffee-expert named Alex, who sources beans from Extract in St Werburgh’s to make beverages of a very high standard.