People / My Bristol Favourites

My Bristol Favourites: Johnny Palmer

By beth owen, Wednesday Aug 28, 2019

Johnny Palmer is the founder and owner of SXS Events, a property investor, and a self-confessed huge fan of Bristol. Last year he purchased the river island at Warleigh Weir and set up the Warleigh Weir Project to ensure people can keep accessing the land. For more information, visit

These are his top-five Bristol favourites:

The slippery rock park

“What an awesome kids play park! My kids and I love hanging here. It has Bristol’s biggest slippery rock, right near the Suspension Bridge, a little climbing wall, a spooky cave, a bit of woodland and some normal play equipment.  The people are always interesting and there is even an ice cream van next to it. What more could we ask for? I have no idea what its real name is and I don’t care as everyone knows what I mean what I say, ‘meet at the slippery rock park’.”

Warleigh Weir

Image by Robert Stephenson-Pardon

“While not geographically strictly in Bristol, it is very Bristolian in feel, soul and the people that go there. On a sunny day people flock to the island to swim, picnic and enjoy a proper West Country field complete with bugs, stinging nettles, terrible parking and aggressive swans. I bought the island at Warleigh last year to ensure that it remained available for generations to come as well as to promote the sustainable use of the countryside.”

Underfall Yard

“This has become a really vibrant spot. Being right by the water it has a relaxing feel and the hands-on exhibits are addictive for both kids and grown-ups. It is also a great sun trap until late afternoon.  James Fitzgerald’s Pickle does some pretty spectacular sandwiches too!”

Big Juice

“I love juice and try the local juice bars everywhere I go. As a self-professed juice aficionado I can confirm that this is the best juice bar on the planet.  John and the team do an amazing job at making mind-blowingly flavoursome juices that are incredibly healthy. Try the vegan chocolate milkshake which is bizarrely excellent.”

The River Avon at Beese’s

Beese’s is of course a Bristol institution which Kate Standish has done an amazing job of developing.  But my reason for loving the spot is not just because of the tea rooms. The crossing over the river forms part of my daily commute from Hotwells to Brislington. Buy a dry bag, run along the Conham River Park tow path, chuck your shoes in the bag, swim across the river and you are in Brislington.  It’s the best way to get to work and definitely beats being stuck in traffic on the Bath Road. But don’t drink the water!”

Read More: My Bristol Favourites: Keith Rundle


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