"Zone A" is an odd name for a piece of land. It originated in the 1970's when the council had plans for a ring road around the city. Large parts of Totterdown were purchased and whole streets of houses were demolished to make way for the ring road, yet after various delays to the project it was abandoned in the late 1980's.
This left large areas of dereliction for over 20 years as the scheme continually faltered. Once it was finally shelved the council was ready to start redeveloping and open area was split into zones that would be managed separately.
The empty plot on the Wells Road between Highgrove and Firfield was Zone A.
The site of the old Bush Hotel (now the green space at the end of Bushy Park, at the junction of Wells Road, and St John's Lane) was Zone N.
As a act of apology to the community of Totterdown, the city gifted the land of Zone A to the community for the purposes of building a community centre. Unfortunately, no funds were provided to develop this so the site remained empty.
The site was originally managed by TACA, the now defunct Totterdown residents association that existed prior to TRESA. The aim of TACA was to protect the site and seek funds to develop a community centre.
Since TACA became dormant and the formation of TRESA, the site is now maintained by the council (e.g. grass cutting) but "shepherded" by TRESA. We have slowly tried to improve the area without restricting any future community building. Improvements include:
- The public notice board
- Bushes around the perimeter
- Planters to prevent fly tipping
- Three large apple trees
- bee friendly wild flowers
- The mosaic to commemorates the destruction of Totterdown
- benches to sit and enjoy the view
In order to maintain the protection of Zone A, TRESA are considering taking legal ownership from the now absent trustees. TRESA would continue the existing remit of protecting the land for a community centre.