Gavin Strange is a designer who by day works in the digital department of Aardman Animations and by night goes under the alias JamFactory. He is also an evangelist for fixed gear bicycles, and earlier this year directed a documentary short called Boikzmoind about the Bristol fixed gear scene.
On Saturday, October 27, Gav is helping to organise Fixed n’ Chips, a race on fixies stopping at five fish and chip shops around Bristol in any order. The first rider to a checkpoint gets 10 points, second gets nine points and so on, but the twist is that if you eat a battered sausage at a checkpoint you get five bonus points. Top prize is a bike, with other prizes from gloves to jerseys hopefully going to everybody taking part.
Here are Gavin’s top-five Bristol favourites:
Clifton Suspension Bridge
“I know it’s such a cliché but I don’t care, I love it! I’ve lived in Bristol for nearly eight years now and the bridge still never gets old. I love riding over it, I love driving under it. Now I live in Bedminster, it means I can actually see it in all its glory from afar, rather than too close. A feat of engineering and a beautiful sight to behold.”
“I love being by the water, and although not on the coast, Bristol brings that coastal feel to the city with all the water. I know the waterfront covers a big area of Bristol, but that’s why I love it. You can walk all the way round, see the boats, see the ss Great Britain, pop into the M Shed, stop off at the Pump House, it’s just a lovely area to be around.”
“Now I know I’m biased, but before I became an official Aardman-ite, I was (and still am) a big fan of the creative powerhouse. I remember peering through the window when I first came to Bristol, keen to grab a glance of the magic within. It gives me a lot of pride to call that place work and for it to be right here in the heart of Bristol.”
“I am a new recruit to BS3, having only lived here for six months, but I absolutely love it, and North Street is the epitome of that. Lots of independent shops, cafes and restaurants, all frequented by young and old; mums, dads, kids, students, hipsters. It has a real community feel to it. I hope to raise a family here one day. I love it.”
“Is it a bar? A restaurant? A coffee shop? A cinema? IT’S ALL OF THESE THINGS! And I love it for that. There’s always a very mellow atmosphere, whatever time of the day, and the food is awesome. Not only all the above, but their programme of events and screenings is always so diverse. Watershed is a real jewel in the crown of Bristol.”