Roadworks halt for Easter

Roadworks halt for Easter

Overnight closures for the A4 London Road/Cleveland Place resurfacing works will be postponed over the Easter Bank Holiday weekend to avoid disruption in the area over this busy Bank Holiday period.

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There will be temporary measures in place to guide and control traffic over the weekend but no delays will be expected.

Overnight works will resume on Tuesday evening 3rd April with closure being in place from 20:00 through to 06:00.  All being well the works will be completed within the planned timescales on Friday Night 6th April 2018.

Tell Laura we love her!

Tell Laura we love her!

Came across the men B&NES had tasked with commissioning the Laura Place fountain in time for the Easter weekend and the start of the new season.

Was a bit of a slow fill – with what looked like a low water pressure – but things were helped no doubt by all yesterday’s rain.

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A slow fill in progress. Notice how chipped the surrounding edge of the basin is.

Shame to see today – March 29th – that although the basin is full of water the fountain has not been switched on. Is it the pump l wonder?

The basin dates from 1877 with a new top put on in 1977. Locals call it ‘the ashtray’  because it looks a bit like one. The masonry is again broken and chipped and the whole sad structure is in need of restoration.

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Looks like it’s been bashed with something​.

Maybe it’s time to do away with it altogether? Or fill in the basin and fill with bedding plants.

It is a shame that a city so full of natural springs – hot and cold – AND a majestic river – should not be celebrating its waters.

Can’t we have a marathon to raise funds for that? What about a Bath lottery?

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It’s full but​ not yet working.

And please. Those who delight in adding liquid soap to the ‘old girl’ and laughing at the foam produced. A. It’s boring and has been done many times before and B. it destroys the pump and it’s the city’s ratepayers who foot the bill.

 

Paul ‘grows’ art from his garden​.

Paul ‘grows’ art from his garden​.

An exhibition of the recent work by sculptor Paul Juillerat is to be on display at the Museum of Bath at Work from March 31st to June 30th and is entitled Totem – Factotum. The exhibition consists a collection of new sculptures made in 2017 and this is the first time they will have been seen in public.

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All the sculptures have an element of found objects- collected over a number of years from the artist’s garden and surrounding area.  Paul Juillerat lives in a former inn – The Old Crown Inn (also known as the Brassknocker Inn) on Brassknocker Hill in Bath.

The garden has a unique setting and contains the detritus of over 350 years of discarded history – including clay pipes, bottles and even musket balls!

In collaboration with the Museum of Bath at Work, the collection of sculptures have been put on display amongst the reconstructed engineering and mineral water factory of Victorian businessman J B Bowler.

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Museum Director Stuart Burroughs said ‘We were aware of Paul’s work beforehand through his exhibitions and there seems a clear connection between the form of his work, the subject matter and the historic source of some of the elements incorporated in the sculpture.

Paul suggested having the items on display among the display we have and they not only stand out as additions but enhance the displays at the same time!’

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For more information

http://www.pauljuillerat.com/latest-work.html

 

Bath’s wonder woman!

Bath’s wonder woman!

Putting aside its World Heritage status – earned for Roman remains and Georgian architecture – Bath can also boast of the part it played in mapping the heavens.

Brother and sister – William and Caroline Herschel conducted years of astronomical research from the garden of their Bath home in New King Street.

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William and Caroline polishing a lens .

William can claim the discovery of the planet Uranus or the Georgian Star as he first called it – after George the Third.

But his sister was breaking new ground herself while she studied the heavens.

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She succeeded in claiming a rightful place in scientific circles through passion and dedication – during times when intelligence in women was frequently disregarded – and is credited with the discovery of several comets and became a significant astronomer in her own right. She was the first woman to be awarded a Gold Medal of the Royal Astronomical Society.Wonder Women A4 poster v2

Only fitting in a year when we celebrate the 100th anniversary of votes for women, that the Herschel Museum of Astronomy – which now occupies the house in New King Street – should be holding a special exhibition dedicated to Caroline.Wonder Woman Comic Issue 51

Inspired by a 1950s issue of Wonder Woman which featured Caroline Herschel as part of a series of Wonder Women of History, this exhibition celebrates modern-day role models in space and engineering who are changing the way we see the world, and beyond.

In the exhibition Wonder Women of Space we have invited four women at various points in their careers in astrophysics, astronomy and space engineering to choose their favourite object from the museum’s collection, and share what inspires them about space and how they would inspire the next generation of scientists.

This exhibition is supported by a programme of associated talks and activities – including this one at the BRSLI in Queen Square.

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An evening talk by Dr Emily Winterburn, academic, author and former Curator of Astronomy at Royal Observatory Greenwich. Based on her book, she will consider Caroline Herschel and her various tactics for encouraging support for her work. Between 1788 and 1797 Caroline discovered comets, became the first woman to be published in the journal of the Royal Society and assisted her brother in his research. Women had tried to get their work heard before, indeed all over Europe there were women quietly working in science, more often than not silently, and unacknowledged for their male relatives; Caroline, however, was the first to get her voice truly heard. In this talk, Emily will focus on the beginning of her story, her very first, tentative steps into the world of scientific publication. Would she judge it well? Or fall to ridicule or condensation as so many of her predecessors had done? Tickets £4 / £2 for students and if a member of BRLSI or William Herschel Society.

 

Dr Amy Frost, Senior Curator, Bath Preservation Trust says: “In the year we commemorate the 100th anniversary of votes for women, this exhibition is a fantastic opportunity to celebrate the extraordinary role Caroline Herschel played in breaking through the barrier of a male-dominated scientific community, and how she continues to inspire women in science today.”
Prof Carole Mundell, Head of Department of Physics, University of Bath added:

“The study of space and our place in the Universe is as exciting and important as it was in Caroline Herschel’s day. The Wonder Women of Space exhibition celebrates the role of women scientists and engineers who are advancing the frontiers of knowledge and continue the Herschel legacy. I am thrilled and honoured to be included with such talented women, and I can’t wait to visit the Herschel Museum to see the exhibition.”

About The Herschel Museum
The Herschel Museum is one of four museums run by the Bath Preservation Trust. It is dedicated to the many achievements of the Herschels, who were distinguished astronomers as well as talented musicians. It was from this house, using a telescope of his own design that William discovered the planet Uranus in 1781. His observations helped to double the known size of the solar system. The house is Georgian, built c 1764.

About Caroline Herschel
Initially acknowledged as her brother Williams’ ‘astronomical assistant’ Caroline soon gained a reputation as a pioneering astronomer in her own right and was the first women to discover a comet (in 1786). From that time she because the first woman to be paid for scientific services, officially employed by King George III, and went on to discover seven more as well as 14 nebulae. She received the Gold Medal of the Royal Astronomical Society in 1828 and received an honorary membership into the Royal Society, before her death aged 97.

The Museum is open Monday – Friday from 1pm – 5pm
Weekends and Bank Holidays 10am – 5pm
Entrance to the exhibition is included with admission tickets
http://www.herschelmuseum.org.uk

Let’s talk Twerton Park.

Let’s talk Twerton Park.

Local people are being invited to drop-in sessions at Bath City FC next month to discuss the redevelopment of Twerton Park.

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The Club announced last year that it is working with Greenacre Capital to redevelop part of its site to provide new sports facilities and a community hub.
The scheme could also include the regeneration of the parade of shops on the High Street in Twerton, as well as reduced income housing and an element of Purpose Built Student Accommodation.
As part of ongoing engagement, people living in Twerton are being invited to attend drop-in consultation sessions at the football club where they will be able to share their ideas on what the scheme, particularly the community hub, could include.

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Bath City Football Ground at Twerton Park.

Nick Blofeld, Chair of Bath City Football Club, said “The consultation drop-in sessions next month will again help inform the next stage of this exciting project to redevelop part of Twerton Park, which we believe will secure the future of Bath City FC and deliver real benefits for the surrounding community.
“We are still in the early stages and we are keen to have as much input as possible from the Twerton community and those who live in the area.
“We ran a successful workshop last year where stakeholders and residents shared their thoughts and ideas on what the new development could include.
“The feedback gathered at that event has proved invaluable to the project team but now we want to give more people the opportunity to have their say, particularly concerning the community elements.
“We hope as many people as possible will come along next month and talk with members of the project team about their ideas for the community hub.”
Bath City FC will bring detailed plans and designs on the redevelopment project to the public later in the year.
The drop-in sessions are being held in the J.Reynolds (Western) Limited Lounge at Twerton Park, High Street, Bath, BA2 1DB, on Wednesday 11th April between 12pm and 7pm, and in Charlie’s Bar at Twerton Park on Saturday 14th April between 12pm and 3pm (before kick-off of the home game with Hungerford Town).
If disabled access is required please call 01225 423087 to make arrangements.
All of the consultation information will also be available via www.bathcityfc.com/twerton-park-redevelopment/.

Dog-gone!

Dog-gone!

What is it about all these ‘offerings’ being made to the “Dog Poo Fairy?”

I cycle through Sydney Gardens on a regular basis. Last week there was a bagged bundle just inside the  Sydney Road entrance. It disappeared in time but there was another one in its place today.

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A little offering – just inside the park entrance.

It’s not as though the park doesn’t contain doggie poo bins – because it does and most dog owners use it.

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Today’s ‘offering’ in roughly the same place.

I never blame a dog for misdemeanours. After all, it’s the owner who has to take responsibility.

It’s a shame some parts of Sydney Gardens have just become a playground for dogs off their leads. Even the poor old spring daffodils have been taking a battering from our four-legged friends running wild.

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Trampled daffs!

Here’s hoping this historic green lung gets its HLF money and its supporters are able to transform it into a revitalised playground with allocated space for all.

Sydney Gardens gives you access to the towpath of the Kennet and Avon Canal. Turn left towards open countryside and you are in for a real treat.

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The snow has gone now and the canalside looks even worse!

Shame the Canal and River Trust has no real teeth to deal with some of those actually floating on the canal.

Not for me to say how you live your lives but when your rubbish despoils and destroys the canal verge – where others living in tents have also lit fires – it’s time to move on.

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The grit bag is full of rubbish – and there’s a pile of black bags alongside it now!

Never mind the dog poo fairy, here’s a bag of towpath grit being used as a general rubbish dump!

l feel for the responsible users of this amazing heritage and for the volunteers who do all they can to maintain it.

Now we know why the ‘thermals’ were in full flow!

Now we know why the ‘thermals’ were in full flow!

It’s the first time l have witnessed Bath’s thermal waters visibly draining into the River Avon from the edge of Parade Gardens – but now l know the reason why it was happening!

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Looking across to Parade Gardens from the other side of the River Avon. You can see the steam rising!

I know this hot spring water has passed through a Roman drain that has been doing its job for two thousand years.

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Part of the two-thousand-year-old Roman drainage system.

It’s an ancient monument which carries water from the Sacred Spring and Great Bath with branches running from the King Spring and another from the Hetling Spring. They join under York Street before passing Bog Island and under Parade Gardens.

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Another shot of the Great Bath only about a third full.

Seems yesterday – Tuesday, March 27th – was the day they decided to empty the Great Bath. Pulling the plug on 250,000 litres of hot water was enough to create a bit of a surge.

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The Great Bath is gradually being refilled.

Stephen Clews, the Manager of the Roman Baths, told me:

‘The Great Bath was drained down yesterday for routine cleaning purposes, so this does explain what you saw.

It is drained down several times a year – usually at fairly short notice – as we fit it in between evening function commitments and other out of hours operational activities. We will probably drain down again in early June and then again in September.’

The operation is carried out to deal with the growth of algae and to take out anything visitors may have thrown into the water.

A similar cleaning operation was being carried out on the King’s Bath – formerly the Sacred Spring of the Roman builders of the baths and nearby temple.

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As the water level in the former Sacred Spring falls you can see two of the pedestals that would have supported Roman gods. Photo : John Cooper.

Fellow Mayor’s Guide John Cooper snatched a couple of shots while he was visiting with a group. Thanks for passing them to us also John!

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Cleaning the Sacred Spring, Bath. Photo: John Cooper.

Bath’s hot springs have flown through the centuries. Rainwater falling on the hills around the city percolating down to a vast underground lake two miles beneath the surface.

Superheated by the Earth’s core it returns to the surface – under great pressure – through three cracks in the strata. You could fill a bath in eight seconds!