Bristol Sober Spaces – Alcohol-free events in Bristol

Image of concert scene with Bristol Sober Spaces logo in corner

It’s exciting times for people who choose not to drink alcohol. Alcohol-Free drinks are booming, and choosing to be alcohol-free is becoming more popular and widely understood.

However, one area still lacking is opportunities for nights out to see music and socialise without the occasion being centred around alcohol. Choosing not to drink can be alienating. Having an event or location where you can socialise with others who have also decided not to drink can alleviate the social pressures associated with being alcohol-free. Enter Bristol Sober Spaces, a collaborative project that aims to provide events, community and music for the alcohol-free population of Bristol. We chatted to Chris De Banks of Not Saints and one of the key members of the project to find out more:

So, what exactly is Bristol Sober Spaces?

Bristol Sober Spaces is a collaborative project between BDP, Not Saints, and the broader Bristol recovery and sober communities to show that great times can be had without alcohol and drugs. For those that love live music and the thrill of seeing a great gig, we hope that these shows will be the bridge between finding sobriety and having a good old-fashioned night out without the triggers and barriers that people in recovery can face. We also want to provide gigs for people who don’t drink for cultural or religious reasons or for people who just want to sample a sober night. Funded by the National Lottery as part of the Not Saints’ ‘Recovery Communities Live project’ we truly believe that recovery and sobriety in the UK are one community that should come together regularly and celebrate all that we have to offer.

How did this all come about?

It all started in the pandemic, believe it or not. When most people were lamenting the loss of live music, myself and the team at Not Saints took a good hard look at what we do and what we could take out to communities around the country. It was obvious from our conversations via a well-known video conferencing platform that people’s love of music and the unity that a great show can bring should be part of this new project. We put together a project proposal, and I trundled off to the National Lottery cap in hand. And success! They awarded us a funding grant to work with 7 locations around the UK to develop a regular performance-based night out in each city or region. For some, it’s Sober Mic nights, others a celebration of recovery with more structured programs, but Bristol is at the forefront of the project so far with the Bristol Beacon on board and some truly killer bands lined up.

So, your first event is in the books?

It certainly looks like it. The Bristol Beacon is such a fantastic venue and we are genuinely thrilled to have their support for the first event on the 5th of May. We’ve also got such an exciting secret headliner and that’s going to be such an amazing reveal. I think everyone is going to be blown away!

Where do I get tickets?

Glad you asked! The event is at Bristol Beacon on the 5th of May and kicks off at 7:30pm. Tickets are being sold on a pay-what-you-can basis with a suggested donation of £5 and are being sold via Headfirst here: 

Flyer for Bristol Sober Spaces Event on 5th May at Bristol Beacon
What more is to come for Bristol Sober Spaces?

At the moment, we’re really focused on the launch event on the 5th of May, but we are already fleshing out plans for more shows in the summer and autumn as our goal is to try and put something on quarterly. We’ve also been talking about some smaller social events and sober mic nights, so watch this space!

How can I get involved?

We’d love for more people to jump on board; it’s such an exciting project with so much scope for creativity and connection. You don’t have to have any events experience or musicality, just a willingness to get stuck in and have a go. If anyone wants to get involved, then they can contact Chris at Not Saints via email at or Sophie Wilsdon at BDP on or 0117 987 6000.

Thanks for your time Chris and we hope that has got you excited for the first event! Grab your tickets here: 

4 minute read

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