Sydney Gardens gets that sinking feeling.

Sydney Gardens gets that sinking feeling.

The sink hole in Sydney Gardens

The sink hole in Sydney Gardens

Evidence of another depression forming nearby.

Evidence of another depression forming nearby.

A sink hole has opened up in Sydney Gardens and the area has been cordoned off.

It was so perfectly round that l thought at first they were about to plant a tree!

It appears to be with deep and there is evidence of another depression forming close to this opening.

I am told it is not the first time such an event has taken place in these former Georgian pleasure gardens.

While nothing much seems to be happening – and certainly no public comment from B&NES – one speculates on what may have caused the collapse. This area of course is riddled with springs and this may have caused some underground erosion?

Which reminds me. There is an underground reservoir at the top of the gardens which Wessex Water are not too keen to talk about. A fear of vandals breaking in they say!

I for one would love to be allowed a look.

Staircase of remembrance

Staircase of remembrance

The grand staircase -festooned with poppies

The grand staircase -festooned with poppies

The grand staircase in Bath’s  Guildhall is currently  festooned with swathes of bright red poppies  – all made from crocheted and knitted wool.

A group of ladies came together to knit roses for Bath in Fashion in May, to fundraise for Kids Company.

They enjoyed themselves so much they wanted to do another project and support Royal British Legion in this First World War centenary year.IMG_2986

Plans were also made for knitting flourishes at the Council’s buildings in Keynsham and Midsomer Norton.

Bath & North East Somerset Council Chairman, Councillor Martin Veal, said: “The Council was delighted to be approached by the knitting group. The poppies will be in the Guildhall, up the main staircase, in early November.

“Sunday 9 November is Remembrance Sunday and the following Tuesday 11 November marks the Armistice of 1918 that ended the First World War.

The Council will make a donation to Royal British Legion to show our support for the charity’s invaluable work.”

Major Roger Evans, Royal British Legion, Bath Branch, said: “This is a fantastic way of raising awareness of the Legion’s Poppy Appeal. We hope that local people will take the opportunity to see the knitted poppies when they go on display in the Guildhall.”

 

 

It’s going to be a blue (and white) Christmas at the Holburne!

It’s going to be a blue (and white) Christmas at the Holburne!

Got a chance to meet Jennifer Scott – the new Director of the Holburne Museum – today and she’s very excited about the venue’s new exhibition which features the comic art of Thomas Rowlandson. He was one of the leading caricaturists of Georgian Britain and many of his cartoons feature Bath. The exhibition has just opened and will run through to February next year.

Jennifer has also been telling me what’s in store for this year’s Christmas theme at the Holburne – so stay with this article until the end to find out more!

She has come to Bath from her previous job as curator at the Royal Collection Trust. A job she has done since 2004. She has curated a number of major exhibitions for the Queen’s Galleries in London and Edinburgh.

Jennifer also worked with the Holburne Museum team last year on the Rembrandt Exhibition which also featured paintings from the Royal Collection.

But first – let’s talk about Thomas Rowlandson.

 

 

Jennifer has only been in the job for five weeks and was not about to divulge long-term plans for the Holburne. However she was able to give me a taster of what to expect at the museum this Christmas.

 

 

 

What time’s the next stage-coach?

What time’s the next stage-coach?

Fed up with today’s newspaper headlines? Well step back into the past and check out the stories making news around Bath more than two hundred years ago. It won’t cost you a penny to do it either.

Georgian NewspaperProjectBath and North East Somerset Council have put information from the local press covering a period from 1770-1799. Volunteers have been sifting through copies of the 18th century editions of the Bath Chronicle and have indexed in-depth information on everything from art and fashion to industry and travel.

The index can be searched by people, places and any free text and is a fascinating source for historical research.

You can then order copies from Bath Library for a charge.

Go to http://www.batharchives.co.uk to find the Georgian Newspaper Project and more information.

Victoria Gallery art donation

Victoria Gallery art donation

Bath’s Victoria Gallery’s art collection has just grown by 28 items. They form a donation by a former loyal friend and supporter.

Between floors at the Victoria Art Gallery.

Between floors at the Victoria Art Gallery.

Bradford-on-Avon resident Dr Sheila Day was also a Trustee of the Gallery’s Friends Group. She very generously decided that, after her death, the Gallery could choose pieces from her wonderful collection of modern sculptures, ceramics, painting and prints for public display until the end of the year.

As well as being a great supporter of the arts locally, Dr Day (née Murray) was for many years a highly-regarded GP practicing in Wiltshire.
Following Dr Day’s death on 8 November 2012, a total of 28 items from her art collection passed to the Friends of the Victoria Art Gallery, a registered charity, who then transferred ownership to the Gallery.

Francis Marshall is the sister of Sheila Day and was  at the Victoria Gallery  to represent her deceased sister.

Francis Marshall is the sister of Sheila Day and was at the Victoria Gallery to represent her deceased sister.

Twenty of the best pieces from the Day Bequest are now on display upstairs at the Gallery. They include prints by Marc Chagall and Ana Maria Pacheco, paintings by Keith Vaughan and Alan Davie, sculptures by Michael Ayrton and Eduardo Paolozzi, and ceramics by John Maltby and Robin Welch.

Local artists who are featured include Ann Christopher RA, John Eaves, Peter Hayes and Paul Sonabend.

Jon Benington, Manager of the Bath & North East Somerset Council-run Gallery, says: “We are tremendously grateful to Dr Day for making this very public-spirited gift to the Gallery, which greatly enhances the representation of modern and contemporary artists in the permanent collection.

The items in this bequest will add a new dimension to the Gallery’s collection, as well as being a permanent and fitting memorial to one of the Gallery’s most loyal supporters.”

The Victoria Art Gallery, near Pulteney Bridge in Bath, is open 10am to 5pm from Tuesday to Saturday, from 1.30pm to 5pm on Sunday and closed on Monday. Admission to the permanent collection is free to all.

Poolside architecture.

Poolside architecture.

cleveland pools trustIt’s a case of one trust setting out to help another on Tuesday next – September 30th – when Bath Preservation Trust give over the Building of Bath Collection – at the Countess of Huntington’s Chapel – to the Cleveland Pools Trust to use.

It’s for a talk on the way architectural forms and styles have shaped our ability to bathe in Bath.

The lecture is to be given by Dr Amy Frost and tickets are £10 with all profits going to the last of Britain’s Georgian lidos which is busy raising funds for a river pontoon to be installed next year to give easier access and  increase visitor numbers.

The event starts at 6.30 and the full details are on the poster with this article. Click on the image to enlarge it.

Peace at Bath Abbey but plans for enforcement to continue.

Peace at Bath Abbey but plans for enforcement to continue.

Despite peace being declared between the Rector of Bath Abbey and several buskers who – he said – disrupted his services – it seems long-term plans to control the level of amplified music in Abbey Churchyard are still under consideration.

The Rector of Bath Abbey talking to buskers today.

The Rector of Bath Abbey talking to buskers today.

The Rector – the Reverend Prebendary Edward Mason – made the announcement of a meeting between himself and the buskers – on Bath Abbey’s Facebook page.

It read:

‘In light of recent events and the consequent media interest, Bath Abbey Rector Edward Mason and colleague Claire Robson met with street musicians Jack Morgan and Ben Powell today.

The meeting provided an opportunity to share how distressing the last few days have been for both the Abbey and the street musicians.

Apologies were given and received and both parties explored how they can work together towards resolving this issue.

Both agreed that the Abbey’s first concern continues to be the needs of the people who enter this holy place.bath buskers

Both recognised the special contribution street musicians make to the life of the city.

Both recognised the need for a workable system that allows street performance to flourish while respecting those who live and work in the city.

The meeting concluded warmly with a mutual determination to draw a line under the past and foster good relationships in the future.’

However, Cllr David Dixon – who is Deputy Leader of B&NES and Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods – has told the Virtual Museum that he is pleased a meeting has taken place.

Cllr David Dixon

Cllr David Dixon

‘Although this is great news, both groups are very aware of the need to have a scheme that is enforceable.

It’s peace at the moment – with the current group of buskers – but what happens when other buskers come along and ruin it for everyone else?

We will have all interested parties in soon and look to work up an enforceable scheme.

The Council is still looking at the amplification ban as a longer-term solution.’