The building at the end of Prince Street began life in 1830 as offices and warehousing for Messrs Acraman, a thriving and expanding firm of iron founders. Acraman then had foundries in Chew Magna, St Philip’s and on Bathurst Basin where they made chains and anchors. The architect was probably R.S. Pope, responsible also for the Wool Hall in Thomas Street now known as the ‘Fleece & Firkin’.

In 1836 Acraman extended their warehouse northwards to provide tea warehousing after the monopoly of the East India Company was lifted in 1833. Bristol could then ‘get in’ on the tea trade. Later, in 1864 when the city had urgent need for bonded accommodation the Warehouse was rented to them.

By 1975 the building was redundant. It was then re-modelled. Cast iron columns and wooden floors were replaced by concrete and the present roof added giving an extra floor. It then became an Arts Centre and developed a distinguished reputation known as the ‘Arnolfini’.

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