On New Year’s Day visitors to the Bath & North East Somerset Council-run Roman Baths will receive complimentary hot dates as they step out beside the Great Bath. Hot, stuffed and peppered dates were a Roman delicacy popular at New Year festivities.
In 45 BC Julius Caesar reformed the Roman calendar and in so doing introduced the month of January in honour of the Roman God Janus, a two-faced god who looked both backwards and forwards.
Councillor Ben Stevens (Lib-Dem, Widcombe), Cabinet Member for Sustainable Development, said: “Bath & North East Somerset Council welcomes visitors and residents to come and enjoy the unique atmosphere of the Roman Baths right throughout the festive season as the steam rises off the water in the fresh winter air and the torches around the Great Bath illuminate the dusk sky.”
Stephen Clews, Manager of the Roman Baths, said: “The hot dates are a Roman tradition which has proved very popular since we introduced them at the Great Bath to celebrate New Year’s Day.”
Visitors to Bath & North East Somerset Council’s heritage attractions are reminded that:
- The Roman Baths is open daily during the holidays, apart from 25 and 26 December, from 9.30am to 4.30pm (last exit at 5.30pm)
- The Fashion Museum is open every day, except 25 and 26 December, from 10.30am to 4pm (last exit 5pm)
- The Victoria Art Gallery is open Tuesday to Saturday, 10am to 5pm, and on Sundays from 1.30pm to 5pm. The Gallery is closed on Mondays and on 25-26 December and 1 January.
For more information about Bath & North East Somerset Council’s heritage attractions visit www.bathnes.gov.uk/heritage or call the Roman Baths on 01225 477774, the Fashion Museum on 01225 477789 and the Victoria Art Gallery on 01225 477233.