Foster's Almshouses, Bristol

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Foster's Almshouse
Foster's Almshouses June 2010.jpg
Foster's Almshouses with the Chapel of the Three Kings of Cologne
Foster's Almshouses, Bristol is located in Bristol
Foster's Almshouses, Bristol
Location within Bristol
General information
Town or cityBristol
Coordinates51°27′22″N 2°35′50″W / 51.4560°N 2.5973°W / 51.4560; -2.5973Coordinates: 51°27′22″N 2°35′50″W / 51.4560°N 2.5973°W / 51.4560; -2.5973
Construction started1861

Foster's Almshouse (grid reference ST586732) is a historic building on Colston Street, Bristol, England. The almshouse was founded by bequest from 15th century merchant John Foster in 1492.[1]

The west wing of the current building was built in 1861, the north wing in 1872, and the south and east wings in 1880-83 by Foster and Wood. The Chapel of the Three Kings of Cologne, which was built for the use of those living in the Almshouse, was restored at the same time.[2]

It has been designated by English Heritage as a grade II* listed building.[3]

In 2007 Bristol Charities, which runs the almshouse, sold the existing buildings to a developer to develop into private accommodation. This decision was taken because the existing buildings were judged to be unfit for the purpose of housing the old and often infirm occupants who lived there.[4] The proceeds of the sale have been used to establish a new purpose-built 'John Foster's Almshouse' in North Bristol.[5]


Records of Foster's Almshouse are held at Bristol Archives (Ref. 33041/BMC/2) (online catalogue) and (Ref. 45157/1) (online catalogue).

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Evan T. Jones (ed.), '‘Will of John Foster, merchant of Bristol, 6 August 1492’', The National Archives, PROB 11/9, fos. 65-66 (University of Bristol, ROSE, 2008)
  2. ^ Brace, Keith (1976). Portrait of Bristol. London: Robert Hale. ISBN 0-7091-5435-6.
  3. ^ "Foster's Almshouse and attached walls, railings and gates". Images of England. Retrieved 2007-05-18.
  4. ^ 'End of an era for almshouses', 26 September 2006.
  5. ^ 'The new John Foster’s Almshouse in Henbury, north Bristol'. Archived 2009-07-28 at the Wayback Machine