22 May 2023

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The Bristol Record Society is a registered charity devoted to the study and publication of the historic records of the City and County of Bristol. Since its foundation in 1929 it has published over seventy major volumes. These are an essential source for the investigation of Bristolís history. All the volumes, together with their introductions, are products of the freely given work of scholars, each of whom is an expert in the chosen topic. The production of each volume is overseen by a managing editor, drawn from the Council of the Bristol Record Society. The Council is†† made up of academics, archivists, librarians and other experts involved in the study of the cityís history. All volumes are typeset, copy edited and produced to professional standards. Our current publisher is 4word Ltd.

In addition to our main volume series, we also produce  Occasional Publications of records or secondary works that we feel to be worth making publicly available, but which have not been edited, polished or formatted to the same standards as the volumes in our regular series.

For more information about the Societyís formal aims and organisation, please see our Constitution.

Digitisation Initiative

Since 2015 the BRS has been engaged in an extensive programme of digitisation and electronic publication of works relating to Bristol history. All our volumes are freely available online on the Publications page, five years after their publication in print. Over a hundred other primary sources and scholarly works, including records volumes, pamphlets, research monographs and topographical prints of Bristol, have been digitised and e-published since 2019. These can be found on the Links page.

Those who wish to support our digitisation activities can make a direct donation to the associated fund. Donors can also choose to sponsor the digitisation of individual works, which will be recorded on the website. Recent benefactors include: Anistatia and Jared Brown, Richard Stone, John Reeks, Madge dresser, Evan Jones, Graham Thomas, Roger Starr, Brian Orchard and Alan Hale.


The Record Society is a charity and a voluntary group, which operates through the freely-given services of its officers, trustees and editors. We invite all our members to share in this liberality, in one of three ways.

         A general donation to the society. Click to download a donation form.

         A donation to our Digitisation Initiative. Click to download a donation form.

         A bequest. Click to download a draft codicil to your will.

Past donors include: Derek Bond, Margaret McGregor, Monica Parkin and John Rhodes, as well as others who have asked to remain anonymous.

Illustrated here is the City Badge, granted on 16 February 1983. The design of the badge is based on the City's ancient Coat of Arms which has its origins in the 13th century burgesses' seal. The earliest record of the adoption of the ship and castle theme as the official arms is in the three illuminated charters of 1373. The use of the Coat of Arms is, strictly speaking, confined to the City Council which obtained the grant of the City Badge in 1983 for use, with official permission, by institutions associated with the City.


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