Oct 23

‘Treasure Island Trail Update’

Throughout the past six months we’ve been in negotiations with Bristol’s new Mayoral regime and we’ve been talking to cabinet member Gus Hoyt about our Treasure Island Trail and its future. This in turn has led directly to our talking to Bristol’s Green Capital team with a view to taking part in Bristol’s Big Green week in 2014 – with a ‘Geocaching’ version of our Trail  in order to try it out and gauge people’s reactions.

All of these talks have been very fruitful and have helped to shape our minds. Gus for instance suggested we lengthen our Trail to incorporate the Merchant Venturers Almshouses at the Broad Quay House end of King Street leading us to eight locations – ‘Pieces of Eight’ if you like.

The case for this is compelling, taking advantage of the vast footfall of this area, the Almshouses were the actual ones that William Williams resided in prior to the publication of his book The Journal of Llewellyn Penrose – A Seaman which introduced to the world an encrypted pirate treasure map, way back in 1815. This concept was ‘borrowed’ by Edgar Allen Poe in his book the Gold Bug (or Gold Beetle as it was called in this country) and this in turn was borrowed by Robert Louis Stevenson for his immortal classic, Treasure Island.

This will now be added to the rest of our Trail which in itself has been tweaked to reflect Stevenson’s chapter headings rather than the picture captions we had originally. The locations of the rest of the Trail remain unaltered.

The Geocache initiative was thought up and proposed by Darren Hall of the city’s Green Team and we welcomed it with open arms. We’re now planning two caches to test the idea out and intend to follow it up for Big Green Week 2014.

In addition to our Trail we’re hoping to engage with the Ferry Boat Company for an outer circuit of caches at each of the Ferry stops and incorporating iconic Bristol attractions such as the Matthew and ss Great Britain. All containing clues leading to a prize available at somewhere like the Tourist Information Centre.

Merchant Venturers Arms

This is where the inventor of the treasure map in literature, author William Williams, saw out his days.

We’re putting all of our energies into this project and have invited our colleagues from the European Culture Route ‘In Stevenson’s Footsteps’ to come over next year to try it out. Watch this space!
Picture shows the coat of arms of the Bristol Merchant Venturers in King Street, the Almshouses to which they’re attached were built in 1699.

Oct 03

New Venue for LJS Trust October 2013 Meeting

Tuesday 1st October 2013 was a notable day for the Long John Silver Trust for, as new corporate members of the Matthew of Bristol Trust, we held our first meeting aboard the Matthew.

We’ve had meetings in Bristol before, but being aboard the Matthew was special with the water of Bristol’s Floating Harbour lapping against her hull, LJS Trustees sat down with Patron Royston Griffey and LJS members Bob McKeown and Roger Gough to discuss exciting recent developments with Bristol’s Green Partnership team and our colleagues on the proposed European Cultural Route ‘In Stevenson’s Footsteps’.

More details to follow about our meeting but please take a look at the historic pictures below showing Trustees at the captain’s table and the Matthew at night – the latter a glorious sight.

Many thanks to the Matthew for allowing us this great privilege.
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