Watch your step!

Bath’s Saw Close has a long and not always noble history. It was where timber was sawn up for our city’s Georgian building boom – trees dragged in over ditches with a man up top and one below at either end of a giant saw. Getting the upper hand is a phrase that may well have come from the job of the man on top. Much nicer than getting sawdust in your eyes down below.

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The ‘new’ public space at the Saw Close.

However, there were other pits in this open space – once also known as Timber Green – for bear baiting and cockfighting.

While now ‘marked-out’ by the Theatre Royal, old Blue Coat School and what’s left of the Palace Theatre – it had a more industrial past as the site for clay pipe manufacturing and a soap and candle factory.

Bath’s first organised large-scale gambling since the days of Beau Nash gets underway in a couple of week’s time with the opening of the casino. There’s a boutique hotel opening in the near future too.

They are products of a new development that is being used to revitalise and energise the area and with a large public ‘piazza’ in the middle of it all.

I don’t know who does the design work for this sort of thing but it is nowhere near as grand as anything you might see in Spain or Italy.

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Not what l would call an imaginative layout!

I am a keen cyclist myself but cannot understand why a big open space is ‘littered’ with cycle racks and rows of bus-station-styled benches when there could have been a fountain – or at least a tree – as a centrepiece.

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You cannot make out each step or acknowledge there is a drop.

The steps that have been installed at the Blue Coat School end are positively dangerous. Coming into the space from Upper Borough Wall the edges are not defined. I am seeing tumble after stumble as people trip on them.

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Each step is going to need defining.

At least define them with white lines.

I am disappointed. Sterility rules OK?