Bradley Stoke is a new town in South Gloucestershire, England, situated on the north side of the city of Bristol. Named after the local Bradley Brook and Stoke Brook streams, the town was planned in the 1970s and building began in 1987. The town is predominantly residential with some retail and commercial areas.
The area that is now Bradley Stoke was low grade farmland north of the village of Stoke Gifford. The heavy clay of the land made it difficult to grow anything and so the land was mostly used as pasture. The land was divided between the parishes of Stoke Gifford and Almondsbury. The area consisted of a number of farms, Bailey's Court and Watch Elm Farm in the south, Bowsland Farm and Manor Farm in the north and Webb's Farm in the middle. A number of woods also existed, Sherbourne's Brake, Webb's Wood and the large Savage's Wood have all been preserved. Fiddlers Wood, the name of which lives on in Fiddlers Wood Lane was all but obliterated by the M4 Motorway. Baileys Court Farmhouse is the only original building that exists and was used as offices by the towns developers before becoming the Bailey's Court Inn. Watch Elm Farm was named after a Watch Elm of legendary size that blew down in the mid 18th century. The Stoke Brook flows through the middle of Bradley Stoke.
Although there is some provision for local employment, such as the business parks at the north of the town, the Aztec West business area and the two supermarkets, it is a commuter town, with many people travelling daily to the nearby city of Bristol. The town now has more than its planned population of 25,000. Parts now join with Little Stoke, Stoke Gifford and Patchway, and further growth is restricted by the M4 and M5 motorways. The planning was built around domestic residence and the car, providing little in the way of public space and other facilities normally found in an area of comparable size and population such as parks, playing fields and public houses.
Bradley Stoke is twinned with Champs-sur-Marne in France, on the outskirts of Paris. A modern residential area in Bradley Stoke is named after Champs Sur Marne.
Many of the differences between Bradley Stoke and the Bristol area can be attributed to either the difference in demographics, or local political geography. While Bristol has a wide ranging demographic expected from a populous city, Bradley Stoke in 2001 was largely made up of white, owner-occupier, young families.
Information from Wikipedia
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