First Base brings over 100 new plant species to Old Market in Bristol

The red brick former building, Soapworks, stands at the centre of new £175m plans that First Base will revitalise through a mixed-use development including new homes, an aparthotel and restaurants.

The plans to introduce more than 100 species to the Soapworks development have been announced in response to Bristol’s declaration of an ecological emergency.

Announced on Earth Day, April 22nd, the aim is to provide a space for the city’s wildlife, while also creating new green spaces for people.

The native plants selected for the development will attract birds, insects and mammals, including hedgehogs, butterflies and bees, and ensure local wildlife can easily settle in the area. The plants also hope to improve Old Market’s overall air quality.

‘We have listened to feedback from local people and have made sustainability a priority at Soapworks’ says Lucinda Mitchell, Project Director at First Base.
‘We are pleased to provide 100 new plant species which will significantly impact on the air quality, attract wildlife and improve biodiversity and positively contribute to the health and wellbeing of people in and around the development.’

The site will include 12 new trees, including Field Maple trees and a Juneberry, as well as sedum rooves, wildflower gardens, bee hotels, butterfly boxes and insect hotels.

To pay homage to the heritage of the site, the plans show three planting areas with a range of natural scents, a nod to its history of soap making.