PREVIEW: Statue Wars, BBC Two

This one-off documentary follows Bristol’s directly elected mayor, Marvin Rees, as he attempts to hold the city together after the toppling of the statue of Edward Colston and in the face of rising tensions.



Bristol was thrust onto the global stage after protestors marching to support the Black Lives Matter movement tore down the statue of slave trader Edward Colston and threw it into the city’s harbour last summer.


With access to the mayor’s office, Statue Wars: One Summer In Bristol, documents the unfolding drama in the immediate aftermath and the subsequent weeks that followed, which left Bristol on a knife-edge.


The documentary also explores the tensions and divisions that emerged last summer through the eyes of residents who each have a connection to the statue and the events that followed.


From its history as a major slave-trading port to the contemporary fractures in the city along race and class lines, the film also delves into the complexities and contradictions of Bristol itself, both past and present.


Statue Wars: One Summer In Bristol airs on 10 June at 9pm.