Bath is a city located in the county of Somerset, S.W. England.
Former Roman Baths
Summary information on Bath
Bath has a population of about 84,000. It is located some 115 miles (184 km) west of London and has a history dating back to around AD 60 when the Romans built a major bathing complex centred on the local hot springs. Roman rule ended in AD 410 but the town grew to new prominence some 1400 years later as a fashionable vacation destination and health resort , a development which coincided with an explosion of building in the ‘Georgian’ style the legacy of which remains today of which the most famous example is the Royal Crescent. Bath reached its fashionable peak during the Regency period of around 1795-1830. Today, Bath is prosperous and receives about 4.5m visitors each year.
Georgian era Royal Crescent
Detail on Bath for the visitor
Roman Era: The Romans invaded Britain in AD 43 and within twenty years had found and built a Roman Baths complex and adjoining temple around the country’s only natural hot springs which they named Aqua Sulis. Here, the Romans encouraged worship of their goddess, Minerva. The complex appears to have fallen into progressive decline from around the late 3rd century onwards, in tandem with decline of Roman power in the West. The bathing complex was rediscovered in the 18th century, has been restored and is now a major visitor attraction. Today, visitors can connect with the Roman bathing experience at the Thermae Bath Spa facility.
Georgian Era: Richard ‘Beau’ Nash ( 1674-1762) was the catalyst for the development of Bath as a fashionable resort in the 18th century. Some 5000 listed (heritage) buildings date from this period when father and son architect duo of John Wood the Elder (1704-1754) and John Wood the Younger (1728-1782) were active in the construction of such notable architectural features as the Circus, Queen Square, Assembly Rooms and Royal Crescent.
- Holburne Museum, Great Pulteney Street: Paintings, sculpture, silver and porcelain.
- Bath Abbey: The Abbey Church of Saint Peter and Saint Paul is built on a site with a Christian heritage dating back to the 7th century. Rebuilt in Perpendicular Gothic style in the 12th century with further work undertaken in the 16th and 19th centuries.
- Fashion Museum, Assembly Rooms, Bennett Street: Here is a world class collection of contemporary and historical dress.
- American Museum in Britain: Reputed to hold the finest collection of Americana outside of the United States.
- Jane Austen Centre, Gay Street: The famous author lived in Bath 1801-1806 and set her novels Northanger Abbey and Persuasion in the city.
- Prior Park Landscape Garden, Ralph Allan Drive: An 18th century landscaped garden the design of which was influenced by poet, Alexander Pope and designer, ‘Capability Brown’.
- Dyrham Park: A Dutch inspired, 17th century mansion located about eight miles (13 km) from the city.
- Number One Royal Crescent: A restored Georgian House presented as a museum.
- Pump Room Restaurant: High End eatery famous for its afternoon teas.
- Glassblowing at Bath Aqua Theatre of Glass.
There are direct road, rail and bus links.The nearest major airport is Bristol.