Pirate Pete Walks

January 1, 2000

Pirate Pete Walks 

Work goes on behind the scenes at the Football Club to ensure that Bristol Rovers continually strides to engage with the community to the benefit of older people and young school children alike. 

All connected with the club were delighted when the Community Trust announced The Football league Trust Silver Standard for its work. Many congratulations to Peter Aitken and all of the staff and coaches in the Department. 

Trust Regional Director John Relish is a guest at the game today and we thank John for all of the help, support and guidance that he has given us over the past summer and autumn months as we have progressed our work towards the award. John is a real football man who has recently managed Bath City as well as working our patch for The Football League. 

The Bristol Rovers Study Centre has also been very busy engaging pupils from six local schools in two six week blocks; Ashley Down, St Teresa’s, Henleaze, Filton Avenue, Sefton Park and Horfield C of E. The celebration evening for the term’s work will take place this Monday evening the 11th Jan. A number of players will be there to meet with the children and to present prizes. 

Members of Staff at the centre have written the following account of the work at the centre in the period leading up to Christmas and the New Year: 

Bristol school children have been busy ‘bringing history to life’ at Bristol Rovers Study Centre.  As part of the research for their animation course, children from Filton Avenue, Sefton Park and Horfield C of E primary schools have been braving the November rain storms and meeting up with ‘Pirate Pete’ down at the dockside. 

Pirate Pete alias Peter Martin has been doing his Pirate walks at Bristol’s harbourside for several years, attracting 10,000 visitors a year to see and hear about Bristol’s fascinating maritime history. 

The children loved Pirate Pete’s endless tales of treachery and skullduggery. “Every 50 metres there’s a different story to be told”, Peter says “I think of it as history seen through an eye-patch.” 

One of the most exciting moments for the children was going into The Ostrich Tavern and seeing Pirate Pete reveal the entrance to a secret cave leading to a labyrinth of tunnels stretching for four miles! One of these tunnels let to a trapdoor in the cellar of a house where Blackbeard the Pirate was reputed to have lived. 

Later, whilst peeking through the actual hole in the wall which featured in Robert Louis Stevenson’s book ‘Treasure Island’, Pirate Pete turned to the excited group of listening children and said “Where do pirates like to go shopping?” A few giggles reverberated through the group of youngsters but no answer was forthcoming. Pirate Pete with a wry smile boomed “Arrgos!”. A few groans and even more giggles followed. Rosy cheeked and windswept the children returned from their adventure with Pirate Pete full of wonderful pirate facts to use in their work at The Study Centre back at The Memorial Stadium. 

Using iStopMotion and iMovie on the Apple Macs the children have created a short animation inspired by their visit to the Bristol harbourside.  Sefton Park children were also fortunate enough to interview our very own Captain Black Arab on a break from his busy schedule. 

One of the main goals of the Study Centre is to encourage children in their Literacy, Numeracy, and ICT skills, using the environment of the Bristol Rovers Stadium and the people that work there.  Speaking and Listening and collaborative learning play a large role in raising attainment and confidence levels of local children that attend the six sessions offered at the Study Centre and the blood thirsty antics of pirates through history definitely has proved itself to capture the imagination of both children and adults! 

Pirate Pete runs walks at 2pm from the Stag Beetle sculpture outside Explore, Bristol on a Saturday and Sunday. Perhaps you would be interested to follow the walk yourself. Doubtless you will choose the Sunday walk because of an important activity on every Saturday during the football season! 


Many thanks to Kasha Smal and Jonathan Pearce for their account and for their very good work at the Study Centre. Thank you also to the children who represented their respective schools and Bristol Rovers in a most exemplary way. 


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