Sunshine, water & cycles!

Sunshine, water & cycles!

We’ll get to the water in a moment, but first let’s talk bikes.

What is it with the cycle hoops outside Bath’s Guildhall. Do the two bolts holding them in place snap or work free? We seem to have lost another two.

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A diminishing number of bike stands outside the Guildhall.

While they may be aesthetically pleasing, these two wheel parking ‘posts’ are not up to the job. When are they going to be replaced with something that is?

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Two missing bike hoops outside the Guildhall.

Meanwhile, with the spring sunshine we enjoyed over the week-end it was good to see our river cruisers out and doing great business on the River Avon.

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Looking down on a cruise boat from Grosvenor Bridge.

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Plenty of customers for the up river cruise.

While trips upstream from Pulteney Weir are well known to me, l was pleased to see you can now float downstream on a lunchtime cruise that’ll take you to the Boathouse pub and back.

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A cruise down river leaving from Bath Quays.

You climb on board from a riverside path – alongside the new Bath Quays development – where the bank has been re-shaped and re-planted as part of a new flood defence scheme that is also seeing new flood barrier walls on the other Lower Bristol Road bank.

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The new flood barrier wall being installed.

Check out www.RiverAdventures.co.uk for more information.

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Newly planted trees are already in leaf.

The new saplings they have planted at Bath Quays seem to have taken with fresh green foliage appearing as the new riverside ‘park’ takes shape – one which – hopefully – will  include the retention of an 18th century footbridge found during archaeological work on the site.

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The remains of the 18th century bridge lie under black plastic.

While on the subject of water, it’s great to see the humble little Laura Place fountain back in action and raising the spirits with it’s sparkling display of sunlight fused with cascading water. A quick clip snatched with an iPhone.

What a shame more recent developments like Southgate and Brunel Square – down by the rail station – had not thought of a water feature to help emphasise the fact that this city’s fortunes revolve around its waters – both hot and cold.

And – as we were also talking trees – this is a good place to end with an email from John Houghton.

“I don’t know if you have seen what has been done to the willows outside the old Herman Miller factory opposite Lidl (where I worked one summer in 1972 when it was the original Herman Miller factory) Someone has done a really good job of trimming and shaping the trees.’

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The pruned willows looking great on the riverbank.

He sent me an image he took from the nearby footbridge.

‘Definitely something to celebrate, I think?’, he says.

Always good to do that John.

Making a stand.

Making a stand.

As a cyclist who sometimes has to look around a bit to find  a vacant stand for my bike – l am not too sure l welcome the outbreak of two-wheeled advertising that is becoming apparent in Bath.

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Bike ads?

Seems they are not only promoting local business but making political points.

Clever promotion? Or a damned nuisance if the stands are full up?

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A campaign cycle?

What do you think?

Bike stands and a photo bloomer.

Bike stands and a photo bloomer.

Couple of early Christmas presents for cyclists in Bath. The abandoned cycle lock cable that’s been attached to one of the hoops outside the Guildhall for weeks and weeks, has finally been removed.

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The cable hoop has finally been removed.

I completed my ‘hat-trick’ of tweets to Council Connect yesterday. My first – bearing a photograph of the offending article – was made in late September. Anyway it has now gone.

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The cable lock hoop that was abandoned months ago.

Meanwhile – even more of a pleasant surprise – is the amount of activity involving the installation of new bike stands.

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That’s more cycle racks going up today in Milsom Street.

I saw these chaps busy setting new racks in cement at the bottom of Milsom Street.

Great to see even more two-wheeled traffic being encouraged in the town centre.

Finally, sad to see that once again those lovely people from Bath Rotary have put their festival charity hut bang in front of the best tree we’ve had in Abbey Church Yard for years.

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Oh dear. The Rotary hut has spoiled the view again this year.

The Council even dug a proper foundation for this year’s fir so it wouldn’t need hazardous guy ropes to keep it up.

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The view of tree and Abbey you won’t get now.

Difficult to get people to realise that tourists stand under the colonnade at the Stall Street end and frame up a lovely shot of illuminated tree and Bath Abbey behind. A view now spoiled by the hut.

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Surely the take away hut could have gone somewhere else to allow Bath Rotary to tuck their hut into the corner?

They have plonked a take-away meals hut right outside the Grade 1 listed Grand Pump Room. I would have preferred to see that re-sited and the Rotary hut put there – in the corner – instead.

Don’t blame us, says the Council. A spokesperson told me:

‘We had asked the Rotary Club if they would consider moving their chalet from this location, in order to offer people a clearer view of the Christmas tree and Bath Abbey, however the Rotary Club expressed its desire for the chalet to remain in its existing location.’

While l hope their charity buckets are full to overflowing it would be nice if things could be sorted out to let everyone enjoy  an uninterrupted view of the tree and Abbey next year.