Our neighbourhood: Spike Island

18 December 2023


18 December 2023


Get to know our neighbourhood and enjoy special offers this winter.

Welcome to Spike Island. A vibrant mix of working boatyards, creative studios, independent pubs and cafes and, of course, our beloved SS Great Britain. It’s cheap and easy to get here on the M2 metrobus service or you can catch the train to Bristol Temple Meads and enjoy a walk down the harbourside to reach us.

Spike Island is rich with local history. Our ship sits in the very dry dock where it was built and launched in 1843. Our local pub, The Orchard, has been there for nearly 200 hundred years, too. You can imagine Brunel’s workers heading there after a hard day’s labour in the Great Western Dockyard. Head in there tonight and you might even see a present-day Brunel’s SS Great Britain staff member or two! It’s a real local hangout, boasting one of the city’s finest selections of local ciders with many from local farmhouse breweries.

The Orchard promises a cosy atmosphere with reasonably priced food and drink. You can get a pasty and a pint for around £7. View their website for events, opening hours and more.

The Orchard’s house cider, Them Apples. The pub is on Hanover Place, just round the corner from us.

Our neighbourhood is home to some instantly recognisable sights, including Aardman Animations and an original large Banksy mural tucked away by one of our favourite neighbours, Coffee Club, which is owned by a local husband and wife duo. Not only do Lucy and Dan serve up delicious coffee and pastries, they’ve been running some of Bristol’s best alternative gigs in the area since 2013. We even partnered up with them for our 2023 Summer Lates Series, allowing guests to discover up-and-coming local bands.

This winter, Coffee Club are offering 10% off your order when you show a group bus ticket. Use the m2 and get off at stop SS Great Britain on Cumberland Road. Check out their Instagram page for opening hours, info on becoming a member and more.

Find Coffee Club on Hanover Place. You can takeaway or enjoy your coffee and pastry in the sunshine with their outdoor seating.

The neighbourhood is anchored by Spike Island itself, a contemporary art and design centre that hosts large exhibitions. Their café, Emmeline, is frequented by artists and designers and promises wholesome food and drink from local suppliers and producers.

Venture further along the harbour to find Underfall Yard, where you can peer inside workshops, learn about Bristol’s Floating Harbour through interactive exhibits and enjoy a coffee and cake right by the water.

Mr Brunel enjoying coffee and cake at Underfall Yard.

We may be biased but a trip to Spike Island isn’t complete without a visit to Brunel’s SS Great Britain. If you only have time for a pit stop, the Harbourside Kitchen is a great place to grab breakfast or lunch. 

Head along to the Harbourside Kitchen on Saturdays to take advantage of a special deal between 9.30am and 11am: get a hot drink for just £1 when you buy a full breakfast or breakfast roll. Simply quote the discount offer ‘WINTER DRINKS’ when ordering on Saturdays up to and including 23 March 2024.

With unique items from a range of local suppliers, our shop isn’t just for Brunel enthusiasts.

Our harbourside shop is open to everyone, and stocks local suppliers including Stokes Croft China, Laura Cramer and Emy Lou Holmes as well as exclusive nautical and gifting ranges. Every penny spent in store supports the charitable trust that conserves the SS Great Britain and runs STEM education and community engagement programmes.

Shoppers can enjoy a special 20% off purchases over £30 by quoting the discount offer ‘WINTER20’ up to and including 28 March 2024. 

Getting to Spike Island

The nearest mainline railway station is Bristol Temple Meads, approximately one mile (26 minutes walk) away. The M2 metrobus service runs Monday to Saturday and links Temple Meads and the city centre to Long Ashton Park and Ride. Get off at stop SS Great Britain on Cumberland Road to explore the Spike Island neighbourhood.

More ways to get here

Spike Island can be reached on foot, by car or by ferry!
Find out more