Clifton Down Hotel Bristol antique print. Clifton Down is an area of public open space in Bristol, England, north of the village of Clifton. With its neighbour Durdham Down to the northeast, it constitutes the large area known as The Downs, much used for leisure including walking and team sports. There is an Iron Age hill fort at Clifton Camp on Observatory Hill on the down, and there are remnants of an Iron Age or Roman field system between Ladies Mile and Bristol Zoo. The Roman road from Bath to Sea Mills crossed the Downs near Stoke Road, and a short length is visible as a slightly raised grassy bank. In the Middle Ages Clifton Down was the commons of pasture for the manor of Clifton. In 1676 and 1686 the manor of Clifton was purchased by the Society of Merchant Venturers. During the 18th century Clifton became a fashionable summer spa, and Clifton Down was increasingly used for recreation. There were also lead mines in the 18th century, which account for the bumpy surface in the area by Upper Belgrave Road known as the Dumps. A gibbet was erected opposite the top end of Gallows Acre Lane (now known as Pembroke Road). By the mid-19th century Clifton Down ceased to be used for grazing. Clifton became a desirable place to live, and large houses were built close to Clifton Down. Bristol Corporation became concerned at the threat to this public amenity, and in 1861 promoted an Act of Parliament, under which the Society of Merchant Venturers undertook to secure Clifton Down for public enjoyment free of charge. Since 1861 Clifton Down has been managed, with Durdham Down, by the Downs Committee, a joint committee of the Society of Merchant Venturers and Bristol City Council, which owns Durdham Down. The committee appoints a Downs Ranger to oversee the Downs. This antique print is an original image of the Clifton Down Hotel from ‘The Queen’s Album of Clifton,’ a series of 12 small ‘photo-lithograph’ images, measuring 11 cm by 7½ cm, based on some previous steel line-engravings, published by Rock Brothers & Payne, and carrying the dates of the original engravings, in the lower right-hand corner. See Product Gallery image to view the cover of this scarce item.