Humps and bumps and Crescent cobbles.

As roads go – the curvy, cobbled bit in front of Bath’s spectacular Royal Crescent – has got to be one of the city’s most prestigious carriageways.

The terraced Georgian building it serves is a Grade 1 listed structure – designed by John Wood the Younger – and constructed between 1767 and 1775.

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The now uneven cobbled surface to be replaced.

The terraced Georgian building it serves is a Grade 1 listed structure – designed by John Wood the Younger – and constructed between 1767 and 1775. The roadway is als0 a protected feature of the Royal Crescent but still is daily use by cars, vans and lorries and the condition of

The roadway is als0 a protected feature of the Royal Crescent but still is daily use by cars, vans and lorries and the condition of the carriageway is poor.

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The area of road being treated.

The stone setts – commonly known as cobbles – have become uneven – creating trip hazards – while the loss of mortar between the stones has resulted in the failure of the concrete substructure meaning that it can no longer carry the loading from vehicles.

So B&NES contractors are lifting the existing stone setts over an area of around 350 square metres and constructing a new concrete substructure beneath.

The existing setts – which are a mixture of  Caithness and Pennant stone – are in a mixed condition, but those in a suitable condition will be salvaged and re-used to maintain the patina and historic character.

Where necessary, damaged setts will be replaced from other salvaged stone or new stone which has been specially selected to provide a good colour and texture match.

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Preparing the ground for the new concrete base.

The road originally would have used locally sourced limestone. Between 1875 and 1900 the surface was re-laid using Caithness stone – a fine-grained Devonian sandstone. Some areas of this stone have been replaced at some point in the past with a Pennant stone.

The current highway, whilst historic, is not original. The materials have changed, the way of laying the materials has changed, and the fall and configuration has also changed from the original alignment.

Whilst some of the setts themselves may be 120-150 years old, they were last laid around 40 years ago and it is this process which is now failing in places.