The Bristol Spiderman Team: coming to a town near you

A team of costumed crusaders have been taking to the streets across Bristol to raise spirits and fundraising. 

Initially started by St John’s Ambulance worker Tommy Matthews, the group of cosplaying superheroes and Disney characters has rapidly grown legs and now includes over 20 volunteers. 

So far the project has raised over £2,000 for the Wallace and Gromit Grand Appeal, which supports The Bristol Children’s Hospital Charity by raising funds to help transform the lives of sick children from the South West and beyond.

Following a recent successful visit to Charfield and Wickwar, Now, some members of the group are looking to make a visit to Wotton-under-Edge and Kingswood, as Nicola Harvey explains. 

“Essentially, as soon as we get enough requests to visit a location we can head out there – if we get ten people making requests we’ll come round and do a route.

“The whole thing was kicked off by Tommy Matthews, he started going round his area dressed as Spiderman, and now there’s probably about 20 of us all in the team, all superheroes and Disney characters.

“He said we could dress up as Disney or superhero characters, and I thought that I’d do Elsa from Frozen as she’s quite popular. 

“It’s quite good if I go round with different superheroes because then you’ve got something for everyone. 

“Not to be stereotypical, I’ve seen boys dressed as princesses and girls dressed as superheroes. it’s just boys tend to get more excited about superheroes.

“We are raising money for the Wallace and Gromit Appeal if anyone would like to contribute to this. It is a great cause so any donations would be gratefully received.”

Nicola has been dressing up as Frozen’s Elsa for about three weeks, and says that it’s great to bring joy to kids stuck at home during lockdown. 

“Basically we go around a route on request, walking or jogging, and then we stop wherever we see kids just to chat to them or say hi, or have a photograph with them at a 2 metre distance.

“In several of the photos the kids are dressed up too, which is lovely.”

Nicola is a teacher in Yate, so she’s not working in school at the moment and tends to work as Elsa on weekends and Wednesdays, her day off. 

“I put up a post on our messenger page recently seeing if anyone wants to go out to Wotton and got a reply from Wolverine and Deadpool as they live nearby. 

“Unfortunately Spiderman and Iron Man probably won’t be able to come if we do go as it’s quite far for them, but it should still be good fun.”

“The reactions from the kids are really good, they’re really happy to see us. 

“Sometimes some of them get a bit shy, a bit shocked, but they get quite excited about it – we get really good responses.”

Nicola is planning on keeping up her cosplaying until the end of lockdown. 

“It’s been really well received actually – even the older generations have been very receptive, you even get some asking for a photo with you for their grandchild.”

To find out more, search for the Bristol Spiderman Team on Facebook.