FUTURES Walking Tour: Research Lives and Legacies

Get your walking shoes on and join us on a guided walk around Bristol City Centre, exploring the lives of historic Bristol researchers.

Uncover hidden aspects of Bristol’s research history covering a wide range of topics from Engineering and Physics to Health and Arts. Guided by professional Walking Tour Guide, Steve Mynard, the FUTURES Walking Tour: Research Lives and Legacies will explore blue plaques, statues, buildings and art installations showcasing research that has happened at the University of Bristol and show how the legacies of Researchers’ past are influencing research happening today.

Guided tours with Steve Mynard are available in two time slots:



Need to know

The meeting point for this walk is Cabot Circus Shopping Centre, in the central area. Look for the FUTURES Family Fair exhibition our exact location can be found at what3words.

The walk will take two hours and cover two miles. Light refreshments will be provided at the beginning of the tour.

This tour is step-free, is suitable for small to medium-sized mobility vehicles and will finish in Royal Fort Garden. The walk will be hilly in parts, however, the tour will be at the speed of conversation and pause regularly for discussion. If you have any access requirements and would like to speak to us about the route please email

Please arrive 5 minutes before your start time.

This walk is free, but booking is essential.

Walking Guide

Steve Mynard set up a walking group in 2016 called A Walk in the Past based in Bristol. Over this time Steve has delivered over 500 events and built an audience of over 5,000 members.

The Walking Tour

Along the route, we will consider the pioneering work of Professor Jean Golding OBE, founder of the Children of the Nineties project, which has been referred to as ‘Bristol’s gift to medicine’.

At a rather quirky installation on a wall at the foot of St Michael’s Hill, we will hear of the life and work of Professor Richard Gregory and the role that he played in the development of artificial intelligence.

In Royal Fort Garden we will encounter thought-provoking sculptures that will lead us into research on the life sciences and perception.

Here also we will explore the life of Elizabeth Blackwell, the first female doctor, and discover the ongoing work of the Bristol University Institute that carries her name.

Sir Bernard Lovell untangled cosmic rays in the School of Physics at Royal Fort where we will explore his legacy.

Our tour concludes with the stunning new statue of Henrietta Lacks. Her living tissue, the first cells to survive and reproduce outside of the human body, created the ongoing HeLa line. This vital line, the first immortal human cell line, is still helping scientists around the world solve medical challenges and saving lives more than seventy years after her death in 1951.

As is our custom a full set of written notes will be emailed out after the walk to help you hold on to what you have picked up from our exploration of Research Lives and Legacies with the University of Bristol.

Event Details

Cabot Circus Shopping Centre
Bond St, Broadmead

Date: 16/09/2023
Time: 11:00 am - 4:00 pm
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