Today we went to 1 of our favorite places – Bath. We had planned to make it an overnight trip so we could call past Stone Hedge and another large garden on the way home the following day. However this amazing English summer we are having kind of didn’t work in our favor – that’s right more rain and then thunderstorms forecast. So we cut it back to a day trip to Bath and home again that night.
We arrived in Bath late morning and decided to jump on 1 of the tourist buses to do a city tour and have a look around. Bath is a really nice city. All the buildings have a facade of bath stone, which is a local sand stone. This stone is very easy to work with and carve because it is a lot softer and does not need to be split along the grain. However because of this washing and cleaning of the buildings is a very tedious and delicate task. We learnt that they need to firstly put a solution all over the building and let it sit for a few hours to loosen any mold and dirt then another hit of the solution before it is hosed off under low pressure.
Driving into Bath
City planning, however only requires the facades of the buildings to be completed in the traditional Bath stone so when you go down a back street it is just normal / regular houses and buildings from the rear.
After getting off the bus we went through the Roman Baths. The Romans built these baths around a natural hot water spring. It was a great setup. They had built a huge structure over the main spring the constructed a full drainage system to carry the hot water through a series of other baths. Some inside the buildings and a large one outside.
The large bath outside.
Another view of the large bath outside.
When the Romans occupied the area, Bath was very important to them. They used it as a place of worship and healing. Pilgrims would travel a long way to use the baths, animal sacrifices would be made and many holy people would reside at Bath.
A skeleton found during the excavation of the baths.
It was also used like a gym and fitness center. There were large areas where soldiers and others would work out and exercise. When the Roman Baths were discovered the archeologists uncovered many interesting facts that demonstrated how advanced the civilization was. For example there is sewer and drainage systems that kept the area clean and construction methods previously unseen at the time.
Part of the old drainage system and cobble stone pathway that would carry springwater from the main spring.
They uncovered many other artifacts – old pieces of weapons, stone carvings and curses, which were pieces of lead with names and descriptions of crimes committed against one another. The curses were thrown into the spring to curse the criminal who committed the crime – if you could name them the curses would be much stronger.
After leaving the Roman Baths we had a look through the Bath Abbey.
The Bath Abbey.
The Abbey from the top of the bus.
It had not stopped raining most of the day and we were all getting over it by late afternoon, so with a couple of hours drive ahead of us – we decided to have a quick look at the Royal Cresent before making our way home. The Royal Cresent is a large series of buildings that over look the city. It is the most expensive and prestigious part of town to live in. There is mainly private apartments here with 1 Hotel – The Royal Cresent, right i the centre. They have their own private park area in front which leads down into the gardens, so there is no obstruction for their views.
The Royal Crescent.
Moni, Dieter and Neil in the rear garden of the Royal Crescent Hotel.
Still raining …… we’re outta here and back to Esher.