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.

A statue that looks good enough to eat?

A statue that looks good enough to eat?

Bath is not exactly running a surplus on public sculpture.

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The statue of Queen Victoria at the Victoria Art Gallery.

Apart from Queen Victoria – sitting half way up an art gallery wall – and poor Rebecca getting no more than a dribble from her well – the majority of stone figures surround the Great Bath – the centrepiece of the city’s Roman remains.

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The Rebecca Fountain.

 

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Emperors and Governors at the Roman Bath.

 

However, the wonderful world of commerce is fighting back.

Never mind promoting water, this little fellow welcomes you at the doorway to ‘great food’ – and not far away, a Regency period dressed little lady looks good enough to eat.

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On guard in the name of ‘great food’ eh?

This new kid on the block is promoting the chocolates you can buy inside the shop she welcomes you into, but l wouldn’t suggest trying to bite her.

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A statue that looks good enough to eat!

Tempting though she looks, with her Jane Austen styled appearance, she is NOT made of the edible stuff.

 

Go with the flow for Bath’s future.

Go with the flow for Bath’s future.

It’s amazing to think that six thousand Bathonians turned out to watch when the original fountain in Laura Place was switched on in the late 19th century.

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In a city famous for its waters – both hot and cold – the intention then was to have fountains dotted throughout the city – including two either side of the Royal Crescent.

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The report produced by Robert Delius.

Money and engineering problems nipped that idea in the watery bud but one local architect thinks it’s time the city considered reviving the idea and offering both residents and visitors a new and exciting visual way of celebrating the area’s unique gift of both hot and cold springs.

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Robert Delius is the author of ‘The Waters of Bath’ and an architect working for Stride Treglown.

Robert Delius – who works for Stride Treglown – has put together a 42 page report which he is circulating amongst interested parties and is letting Bath Newseum followers hear more about his proposal.

 

Couldn’t resist re-showing a fountain snippet from HTV’s architectural series on Bath – Set in Stone  – which l had the pleasure of presenting in the 1990’s – never realising l would end up living in this city. Five years come February 2017!

 

Those contact details again. To find out more about this proposal and add your comments. www.watersofbath.org and @watersofbath