‘Tatty’ World Heritage Bath

Bath Newseum follower, Janet Rolls has been out taking photos in Cheap St.
She was there – last Tuesday evening in the company of some foreign visitors – and witnessed a heap of flimsy bin bags and a flock of seagulls having a feast.
Janet’s picture of the gulls.

“Why is there no “policing” of council policy? Restaurants are meant to use reinforced bin bags, but the photo clearly shows that this is disregarded.
A boards – says Janet – don’t leave much room for pedestrians.

Everywhere there are ugly “A “ boards outside shops which are meant to leave 1.5m of free pavement for pedestrians, but this is never enforced.
Another A board shot from Janet.

Our visitors were from Beunos Aires, had worked at the Mineral Water Hospital 35 years ago and have a deep fondness for Bath, but were appalled at the tattiness of this World Heritage city now.”


  1. The commercial rubbish in Bath is a huge problem. My husband and I went for a walk into the city centre at 6pm and we saw this exact situation. This really needs a re-think by businesses and council. In the past I have emailed pictures of rubbish to the head offices of the restaurants in question. That did work for awhile. I will start that again but it is so depressing that we STILL have this problem. Any one want to join as a group to work on this?

  2. I think we need a frank conversation about where all our council revenue and particularly council tax goes. The city and much of the surroundings areas are looking tatty but the council has no money to ‘fix’ this. 83.5p in every £1 of council tax is going on Child and Adult Services. When you look deeper into it, the council spends £40M more per year than the average on Adult Social Care bill.

    Yet the council is looking to find savings of £6.5M this year while council tax payers are footing the health bills of the elderly while the roads and public realm falls into disrepair.

    Care of the elderly should be centrally funded and placed under the responsibility of the NHS which brings with it efficiencies of operation. The current situation is untenable and the city is falling apart due to this.

  3. This is SO SAD Richard, it seems to be a British culture thing, let’s use and obuse our environment, to hell with everything as long as I get what I want! If there were more police around with teeth to enforce the laws, so many things would benefit by their presence! Well done you for your journalism capacity on so much around Bath!

  4. The South American visitors’ reaction was shocking. Not helped by the shake-up in retailing and hospitality going on at the moment. Walcot Street and even the old heart (Milsom Street etc) is in decline, for example.

    I think this local care should be a small expression of civic pride for which we all have a responsibility. The enforcement stick by the Council should only be necessary if and when all the carrots have been used up. Sometimes, also, it could be ignorance of the rules by people (maybe casual staff cleaning up premises after closing time?).

    Naming and shaming, as you have done, could well be effective, if a transgression is easily attributable – as the poster board is. So is us boycotting poorly performing businesses.

    However encouragement and mutual self-interest would be even better. How about a series of awards for the best kept inner city streets, including the alleyways and backyards? And maybe even another category for residential streets.

  5. Reading text that is all capitals is hard work!
    There really needs to be a by-law about putting food waste out in gull-proof bags.
    Enforcement is generally a problem round here: e.g. of the noise rules for buskers, or parking on double yellow lines. I have however seen more checking of cars in our residents’ parking zone recently.

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