Britain By Car - A Motoring History


An important city in South West England, Bristol’s history has been shaped by its location as a port on the River Avon.

In the 18th century it was a centre of the Atlantic slave trade, but later developed as an engineering centre through the work of such figures as Isambard Kingdom Brunel, chief engineer for the Great Western Railway line between Bristol and London and designer of the SS Great Britain, at the time the longest passenger ship in the world.

Bristol was also the birthplace of Alexander Selkirk, on whom Daniel Defoe based the character of Robinson Crusoe, and the location for the UK-based construction of Concorde, the Anglo-French supersonic airliner, built at the BAC works at Filton.