Keeping it Bristol

A city booming with opportunity...

Bristol is a home of visionaries, a hive of commerce and big ideas which are shaping the future.

Its streets, once walked by Saxons, Normans and Tudor knights, are now lined with beautiful polychrome brick buildings and houses of custard yellow and eggshell blue.

The Gothic pointed arches and spires of Bristol Cathedral stand across from buildings whose sides have been turned into works of art by Banksy and other street artists. The whole of Bristol seems like an art gallery, with stories unfolding in colour on the buildings all around. And the wind carries the memory of music, battles and art through streets both narrow and wide, bending beneath bridges and ascending hills.

Bristol is a fast-growing city

Cities have their own personalities and, throughout history, different cities have inspired and enabled great ideas to take shape. Florence was such a city during the Renaissance; Paris, New York and London are such cities today, and without a doubt, so is Bristol.

It’s the fastest growing city in the UK outside of London and a fertile hub for intrepid innovators who will create the future ground-breaking trends in their industries.

About Simmons & Simmons

We opened our second UK office in Bristol in 2012 and our lawyers here are fully integrated with their London colleagues delivering high quality work for a range of domestic and international clients.

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The past is past but it’s also part of the future

Bristol doesn’t stand on old glories. It’s a city that celebrates all that is new, good and exciting. Its rich history isn’t just some remnant that tourists gawk at and locals ignore.

Bristol Old Vic, one of the country’s most beautiful theatres, celebrates its 250th birthday in 2016. It regularly hosts National Theatre performances and its actors like Jeremy Irons, Daniel Day Lewis and the late Alan Rickman have not just acted here but credited the Old Vic as being an important part of their careers.

Ashton Court has been the site of a mansion house since the 11th century. Fast forward and imagine colourful balloons, filled with hot air and light against the skies above it. A perfect metaphor for where Bristol is today.

Immortalised in Jane Austen’s novel Northanger Abbey, Blaise Castle is a melange of architectural styles surrounded by green fields. Its literary inspiration extends further to a sentiment found on the side of the local café which reads: “And years afterwards you’ll remember that kiss on the bridge where nail heads glittered like stars under your feet”. Ponder on its meaning as you explore the secrets of the mansion house and castle.

About Simmons & Simmons

While Britain was competing in the first modern Olympic Games in 1896, Simmons & Simmons was opening in the City of London. Today we have offices throughout Asia, Europe and the Middle East.

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Getting lost in colour

You can’t not love walking in Bristol. Take a stroll and you could find yourself staring up at a giant dinosaur or cat spray painted on an entire building. It’s like you are in the middle of one big free exhibition. This creative city cherishes and celebrates art, and is home to Upfest, Europe’s largest street art festival.

Keep walking and you’ll discover rows of vibrant coloured houses festooned with plump flowers and lush lawns that breathe a sense of natural life into Bristol. This city continually steals your glances and piques your interest.

About Simmons & Simmons

Our offices are art galleries. On their walls around the world, we display the contemporary art we’ve been collecting for over 30 years.

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Art in the veins

Art and culture course through the city, beckoning you
to immerse yourself in new experiences and grapple with unfamiliar ideas. The O2 Academy hosts big-name international acts and the hottest up-and-coming artists, while the Hippodrome and the Bristol Old Vic never fail to delight audiences with exciting, thought-provoking theatre.

There are many excellent museums and galleries as well, including Arnolfini, Spike Island and British Museum & Art Gallery. If you’re visiting anytime soon, be sure to check out the artists who inspired writer Angela Carter in ‘Strange Worlds: The Vision of Angela Carter’ at the Royal West of England Academy (until 19th March) or the stunning ‘Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2016’ exhibition at
M Shed (until 5th March).

And if you’re into street art, you’re in luck. Simply wander Bristol’s many alleyways and side streets, feasting your eyes on the inspiring array of graffiti art.

About Simmons & Simmons

As well as showcasing art in our offices, we’ve provided legal services for a number of artists including Damien Hirst, Tracey Emin and Michael Landy.

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Let the good times roll

Everywhere in the city, everything moves to a rhythm. There seem to be more DJs, musicians and shiny, epic bars and clubs in Bristol than one would imagine possible. There’s something going on every week.

Venues like the Blue Mountain Club, The Tunnels, Thekla and Colston Hall are impressive destinations where you can soak up the creativity and feel the excitement. Choice is the watchword of the Harbourside with its bars, restaurants and quirky cafés. And the waterside vista makes for a breath-taking view, especially at night when the lights of Bristol crown the waters with silver caps.

About Simmons & Simmons

If you’re awarded a training contract with Simmons & Simmons, you’ll quickly be in the thick of things, assisting first-rate lawyers on high-profile projects. You get real responsibility from the start. Find out more about training contracts.

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Tonight we dine in town!

All the deliciousness you can imagine is waiting for you here. Making your way through the city you might stop by Blue Pig Café for a specialty Russian pancake, which is like a crêpe but thicker, softer, meltier and tastier. The more creative area of Paintworks boasts the Bocabar, are markable, comfy atmospheric space with great food and young upbeat staff which has been shortlisted for the Bristol Good Food Awards.

There’s enough food and variety in Bristol to satisfy even the most demanding of appetites. Traditional, mouth-watering Sicilian food at La Campagnuola; gourmet vegetarian food at the 1847 restaurant; Indian culinary wonders at The Mint Room; amazing machinations at Yurt Lush; the list goes on and on. Naturally, you’ll also find all of the canonical chain restaurants of any major European city.

Bristol’s food scene is always growing and some exciting new family-run restaurants have also popped up in the last couple of months. Pasta Loco started by cousins Ben and Dominic with the aim of celebrating their heritage and the soul of Bristol in a unique modern twist on Italian food. Then there’s Wilsons Restaurant, another newcomer that has won hearts over with its spirit and delicious menu boasting ingredients sourced or grown by hand by the family that runs it. Yeah, we know. There’s almost too much good stuff to pick from.

About Simmons & Simmons

We offer our trainees one of the most comprehensive packages of benefits in Bristol. From an excellent salary to medical insurance, company discounts and gym subsidies, you’ll be pleased with what we’ve got to offer.

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Living in Brizzle

What about the practical side of living in Bristol? The city is growing and more places to live are surfacing all the time. Areas like Wapping Wharf are the next new-home hotspots. This hip quality residential project, integrated with shops and restaurants, is primed to be the hub of social activity.

And it’s not just Wapping Wharf that offers brilliant modern accommodations to students, graduates and people just starting on their career paths. Classy, pristine Victorian houses dot the streets and the average rent is much more affordable than other cities in the UK.

Public transport in Bristol gets a tick and the city has begun developing a new MetroBus network to make getting around even easier. FYI: Bristol has Uber services!

About Simmons & Simmons

Everyone at Simmons & Simmons is friendly and approachable. We operate an open-door policy, which means trainees work closely with partners and are constantly learning.

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Coolest place to work

Businesses here have some of the coolest offices in the world. Just go to Paintworks, Bristol’s creative quarter and take a look. These seemingly ordinary redbrick studios house design, advertising, technology and film companies among others. Peer inside and it looks like they’ve all entered into some kind of competition with one another to see whose office can be the quirkiest.

Areas like Paintworks hide other secrets too; step into a place called Tangent Books and meet some of Bristol’s underground heroes. They’ve got some rare books on the city’s famous artists and have personally been involved in preserving their works. Paintworks is just one example. Go out to Spike Island and discover yet another hub of the creative industries which is producing and feeding content through the UK and the world.

About Simmons & Simmons

We’re specialists, not generalists. Our clients are served by a law firm with an insightful knowledge of their sector. Particular areas we focus on are: Asset Management & Investment Funds, Financial Institutions, Life Sciences and Technology, Media & Telecommunications (TMT).

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Anyone around?

What do you find when you head outside the city? Well, besides lush fields and sprawling green forests, celebrating the awe-inspiring beauty of nature. Okay, how about this. You’ve got Bath to the southeast with its Roman ruins and Wales to the west. London isn’t that far off by train and neither is Chepstow Castle.

Perched high above the river Wye, this Norman fortress was the seat of William Marshal, probably the greatest knight in English history. Oh yeah – you should be impressed.

What's happening now?

Bristol is alive with art, music and good times. It’s got cultural events to feed your imagination and a fantastic choice of restaurants, bars and pubs to feed your belly too. Some of our favourites include The Cowshed, The Wellington and No. 1 Harbourside.

Foodies can also get their fill of local flavours with street food and live music at the monthly Bristol Night Market at the Georgian arcade style St Nicholas Market.

The city’s constantly shifting art scene is not to be missed. Be transported to another world by Adela Breton’s vibrant ‘Ancient Mexico in Colour’ at Bristol Museum & Art Gallery from now until 17th May. Or learn more about the city’s architectural past, present and future with ‘Place, Time + Architecture’ at The Architecture Centre, running until mid-November.

Bristol is an essential stop for many of the world’s greatest musicians as well as fresh new talent. Catch electronic legends Human League at Colston Hall on 30th November or Primal Scream at the O2 Academy on 7th December. Or sway to the soulful tones of Laura Mvula on 6th November.

If dancing the night away is more your scene, Bristol attracts top DJs to its clubs, such as SWX. Jaguar Skills provides the beats on 19th November while Sigala is spinning tunes on 3rd December.

There are some side-splitting comedy performances being served up here. Ross Noble spends a night at Colston Hall on 25th November and Jack Whitehall drops in for a few laughs on 17th-18th January. Check out a live edition of the Catherine Tate Show on 3rd-4th December. Or visit the Bristol Slapstick Festival 2017 in mid-January, when contemporary comics celebrate classic comedy in new ways.

If you want your Bonfire Night weekend to go off with a bang, why not wrap up and check out some of the outdoor events Bristol has got in store. Expect spectacular fireworks from the Downend Round Table Fireworks Display on 4th November. Or head to the coast for the Grand Pier Fireworks at Sea on 12th November.

While we’re on the subject of the night sky, Professor Brian Cox also comes to town in November, to guide you on a journey through time and space. Catch his fascinating scientific stage show at Colston Hall.

There are plenty of events to get you in the holiday spirit. Bristol Christmas Market kicks off the festivities with mulled drinks and a selection of stalls from 11th November to 24th December. Or you can sample homemade and locally produced cheese, jam, cider and beer at the Bristol Local Christmas Market (2nd-23rd December).

For a musical treat, catch carols from the HMS Heron Volunteer Band at the annual Christmas Concert Under Concorde at the Fleet Air Arm Museum on 1st and 2nd December.

When it comes to New Year’s Eve, Bristol knows how to celebrate in style with a choice of special events and parties happening all across the city. From live music and performers at The Square’s ‘A Night at the Circus’ themed party to the chic black tie New Year's Eve Party at Ston Easton Park Hotel, make sure you start your year right.

About Simmons & Simmons

Simmons & Simmons Bristol is a small, friendly office and everyone gets involved in events that range from holiday functions to bowling, go-karting and football matches with the partners.

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Rediscover a world

There’s a whole lot more waiting for you in Bristol. As one of the UK’s fastest growing cities there are numerous opportunities to empower and accelerate your future here. Rediscover Bristol as you’ve never seen it before.

Simmons & Simmons was founded in 1896. Today, we have offices in key financial centres across Asia, Europe and the Middle East and a strong track record of delivering high quality legal services to clients all over the world from our UK offices and beyond.

If you feel inspired to live and work in Bristol and discover what job opportunities we have available, then visit our website to find out more.

Come, grow, develop and boldly define your future with us.