Top regional award for Roman Baths.

Top regional award for Roman Baths.

The Roman Baths has been named best large visitor attraction at the South West Tourism Awards. 

The Roman Baths won two awards: a Gold in the Large Visitor Attraction of the Year category and Silver for International Visitor Experience.

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The Great Bath – part of the Roman bathing complex built around the thermal waters.

Councillor Patrick Anketell-Jones (Conservative, Lansdown), Cabinet Member for Economic Development, said: “More than a million people visit the Roman Baths every year and of these at least 40% come from overseas. This increased footfall is also beneficial to businesses in and around the city and helps boost the local economy as a whole. We are delighted with the two awards, which reflect the huge efforts made by staff to ensure that all our visitors receive an outstanding welcome.”

Last year, the Roman Baths introduced audioguides in four new languages – Dutch, Korean, Polish and Portuguese – bringing the total number of audioguide languages to 12. Audioguides are available free of charge for visitors. Printed information leaflets are also provided in more than 30 additional languages.  In 2016, Mandarin-speaking visitors exceeded 100,000 for the first time, and they now form more than 10% of total visitors.

Recent improvements have made the Roman Baths more accessible for disabled visitors. Four new lifts have been installed, along with handrails, ramps, lowered ticket office counters, wheelchairs for visitors to borrow, and a new accessible toilet. The site has also been made more accessible to visitors on the autism spectrum, with detailed guidance about what to expect provided on the website. 

Due to their popularity, the cast of Roman characters around the Great Bath has been expanded to include Candidina, a lady from Metz (now in France) who is visiting the Temple of Sulis Minerva to pray for a cure for her deteriorating eyesight.

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The Great Roman Bath

In spring 2017, the East Baths will be updated with new projections, soundscapes and CGI reconstructions showing the Roman Baths at the height of their popularity as a working, living and leisure space. Roman characters of all social classes will interact with each other and visitors will be invited to watch, listen and step into the Roman Baths as they would have looked in the first to fourth centuries.

The South West Tourism Excellence Awards recognise the ongoing quality development of tourism businesses in the region and reward the staff that work in them. They have a rigorous three-stage judging process, and most entrants are visited by a team of mystery shoppers. 

The Roman Baths will now be entered into the national VisitEngland Awards for Excellence, which will be announced on 24 April 2017 at the Hilton Waldorf Hotel in central London. 

www.romanbaths.co.uk

 

Buses

Buses

A message – and point of view – from Bob Draper…..

‘Come on Bathonians – Get out your angle grinders & welding torches….!

Having seen someone almost swept off their feet on the lower pavement on the north side of George St. by the front overhang of a tourist bus coming up from Queen Square  I wondered who controls these behemoths of Bath’s narrow streets? 

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One of Bath’s bright coloured tourist buses on its way down Milsom Street.

 Is it the local council or the Traffic Commissioners?

At every corner & junction these gargantuans of the tourist trade have to stop and wait for opposing traffic to clear so that they can swing out on tho opposite side of the road in order to make the corner. there is an irony in the in the winter months that the load factors are often so low a Smart car would be sufficient!

 For the sake of pedestrian safety maybe buses should fitted with some of these:

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Maybe Bath Newseum readers would like to suggest what would be a suitable size of vehicle for Bath’s clogged arteries’?

Bob Draper, Bath.