My list of ideas for Bath’s revival

A Museum of  Ballooning and an outdoor amphitheatre are just two of the ideas put forward by Dr Victoria Holt to help create something new for Bathonians AND tourists.

Dr Holt – who describes herself as a Data Architect and who lives in the city – was reacting to an interview l did with the B&NES cabinet member for heritage and culture, Cllr Paul Crossley.

He said that he thought the current pandemic would mean Bath would come out of these dark times competing with other UK tourist cities for customers.

He thought tourism would come from the home market or Europe as international travel by air would take years to recover.

Dr Holt sent me an email in which she says:

‘I read your news article and never really thought about Bath competing for tourists with other cities. To get more visitors and make Bath have an enhanced set of things to do for its own residents, who need places to chill during this pandemic and the future, there are a few things I think could be done.

For a start, we have two historic buildings requiring renovation – the Cornmarket and cattle market and the former King Edward’s School in Broad Street.

Utilising the assets we have above:

  • Convert Weston Island to a museum island with a river taxi (we need more river usage)
  • Move the Fashion Museum
  • Create an amazing large world-class library
  • Create a Medical Museum
  • Create a History of Balloons Museum
  • Create a museum for mosaic floors
  • Create walking industrial and historic trails around Bath
  • Open the East Gate and return the area to a historic setting and have plaques to mark the other 3 medieval gates
  • Create more walking and cycling routes
  • Create a replicate of the lost Ralph Allen Monument
  • Create a winter sports venue at the University of Bath
  • Have many trim trails around the city
  • Have many types of fountains to view, paddle in water flows
  • Renovate and reuse the island club on Bog Island – it could be the start of a Bath underground tour.
  • Build an observatory and outside space park
  • Add a footpath and cycle path around Lansdown lane to get to the racecourse.
  • Build an outside amphitheatre.

Plenty of ideas there. What do othere people think?


  1. 1. Get the Footprint project finished
    2. Get electric scooters going in the centre
    3. Provide electronic (for use on phones) trails around the city
    4. Make Parade Gardens free of charge and homeless people
    5. Make the exit from the station much more informative
    6. Promote the best vantage points
    7. Get them to stay overnight
    8. Bath Rugby Museum

  2. Get them to stay for 3/4 nights

    A concert hall and exhibition centre ?
    Re-open the Octagon as an exhibition space ?
    A fit-for-purpose police station in the town centre ?
    A coach park outside the town, with tourists brought in electric carts ?

  3. The BRLSI used to have a world class library, but the most valuable books were sold off by the Bath City Corporation in the late 1950s. Scandalous.

  4. A new cycle route was created a year or two back, from Weston into the city centre, with signs and road markings paid for by some scheme or other. I haven’t seen more cycles going that way since it was created (until lockdown at least).

  5. Given our climate Create more covered outdoor seating space post Covid 19 to facilitate meeting space for locals and visitors, this is especially true for pubs and restaurants. Make the river gardens free entry and open the Colonnades on the weir. And instead of a monstrous new stand at the rec move the stand away from the river and redevelop the whole area as a riverside park with open air food and market stalls.
    2) investigate possibility to run steam services from Bath to Bristol to link up with the SS Great Britain (Isembard Kingdom Brunel experience days)

    3 ) Wilhelm Herschel observatory and a planetarium akin to the Madam Tussauds in London

    4) Mozart and Christian Bach played at the assembly rooms make more of that especially in Germany. Promote Bath as a Mozart city.

    5) Horse drawn canal boat trips from Sidney gardens to Avon Cliff or at least the Aquaduct.

    6) Open air theatre, example: Regent’s Park theatre in London. Bath has got plenty of parks. Midsummer night’s dreams in such a setting is magical or even better build an amphitheater to mirror roman past and the crescents. Involve Bath Spa Uni

    7) Better promotion and access to Alexandra park very much a hidden gem; , many visitors to Bath are elderly how about a furnicular?

    8) Enlarge Museum of Bath at work should include large exhibitions about Stothert and Pitt and Pitmanns, but also William Harbutts plasticine manufacture in the city.

    9) open up the Ralph Allen mines for visitors and cavers

    10) City wide real ale and cider festivals

  6. It is also an idea to have a Stothert & Pitt Crane where the new footbridge will land in the old Newark work (now south Quays) I just happen to have one in my back yard which is being restored.

    Peter Dunn

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