Take a peep at the past this week-end!

Take a peep at the past this week-end!

This week-end, Bath & North East Somerset Council is giving residents and visitors a chance to explore parts of the city’s heritage they would normally never get to see.

Every year on four days in September, buildings of national historic importance and contemporary style throw open their doors to enable people to celebrate Britain’s fantastic architecture and cultural heritage.

Cleveland Pools

Cleveland Pools

Between 11 – 14 September, Bath & North East Somerset Council’s Heritage Services team is giving them the opportunity to discover ‘hidden treasures’ and enjoy a wide range of tours, events and activities that bring local history and culture to life.

Councillor Ben Stevens (Lib-Dem, Widcombe), the Council’s Cabinet Member for Sustainable Development, said: “Heritage Open Days is organised by a huge network of people who share a passion for places, history and culture.

“Attracting over one million visitors, this makes Heritage Open Days England’s biggest voluntary cultural event. It is a once-a-year opportunity to discover treasures never normally seen by the public in places that normally charge for admission.”

bath at workThis year, Bath has 15 different venues taking part: Southcot Burial Ground (Bath Preservation Trust), Bath Royal Literary and Scientific Institution, Central United Reformed Church, Cleveland Pools, Fairfield House, Ralph Allen Cornerstone, St Swithin’s Church, The Magdalen Chapel, The Museum of Bath at Work, Nexus Methodist Church, No.4 The Circus, Roman Baths, St. John’s Store, St Mary’s Catholic Church, Widcombe Association.

For the first time, the Kier Recycling Depot at Keynsham is offering a visit behind the scenes to see what happens to your recycling after collection from your home. Places on the guided-only tours are limited and must be booked in advance with Council Connect. Children under 16 must be accompanied by an adult.

Organised by Bath & North East Somerset Council’s Heritage Services, this year’s open day include special tunnel tours at the Roman Baths and feature two places which are not normally open to the public. All of the sites will open free of charge or provide free events.

· Thursday, 11 September 10am and 3pm, and Friday 12 September 10am and 3pm – go behind the scenes at the Roman Baths and take part in Tunnel Tours.

Areas within the Roman Baths complex you don't normally get to see.

Areas within the Roman Baths complex you don’t normally get to see.

The 90-minute tours take in the Georgian vaults and the main museum store, which includes objects found in Bath from Roman to the Victorian times. Visitors will also be able to see the King’s Spring Borehole supplying water to the Pump Room.

St John's Local History Store.

St John’s Local History Store.

· Friday, 12 September 10am-12 noon and 1pm-3pm – see inside No.4 The Circus, a beautiful house and restored Georgian garden – the first of its kind in Britain.

· Saturday, 13 September 11am – 3pm – marvel at the range of historical spa equipment at St John’s Store and also read the original Victorian spa treatments visitor books. Also on display will be furniture by local craftsmen and some once-familiar sights.

To book a place on the Open Days, please call 01225 477 773. For further information download a leaflet here or visit: http://www.bathnes.gov.uk/heritageevents and http://www.romanbaths.co.uk/whats_on/events/events_calendar/september_heritage_open_days.aspx

Holiday fun at Bath Museums

Holiday fun at Bath Museums

Spending your holiday at home this summer or wanting something to keep you busy and on your toes? Why not get involved with events at Bath & North East Somerset Council’s museums?

From 19 July to 30 August the Council is hosting a number of craft and activity sessions which the whole family can enjoy. Learn about Roman coins at the Roman Baths as part of the Beau Street Hoard activity programme (supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund); create designs at the Fashion Museum, or let the children channel their inspiration into art at the Victoria Art Gallery.

With all these events happening, there’s something for everyone this summer, and better yet, they’re right on your doorstep!

The first handful from the hoard which is now known to contain 22,000 coins!

The first handful from the hoard which is now known to contain 22,000 coins!

Roman Baths
Standard and Deliver
Monday 28 July, 10am-1pm and 2pm-4pm
Investigate Roman coins to find out about army standards. Make a standard to lead your family this summer.

A head of the game
Monday 4 August: 10.00 am – 1.00 pm & 1.30 pm – 3.30 pm
What did a Roman’s hairstyle say about them? Find out and make a wiggy wonder. Family drop-in.

Victoria Art Gallery
Life on the ocean wave
Friday 25 July; 10.30 am – 12 noon
Enjoy our boat pictures and build up a boat collage using recycled materials. For 6 to 11 year olds.

Beside the Seaside

The new look upper gallery at the Victoria Art Gallery in Bath. May 4th 2012. Photographer Freia Turland e:info@ftphotography.co.uk m:07875514528

The new look upper gallery at the Victoria Art Gallery in Bath. May 4th 2012. Photographer Freia Turland e:info@ftphotography.co.uk m:07875514528

Wednesday 30 July, 10.30am –11am
Make seaside scenes using rubbings and textures to get you in the summer holiday mood. For 3 to 5 year olds. Squash and biscuits included.

Dragonheart
Friday 1 August 10.30am – 12 noon
Explore our special exhibition and invent a mythical creature and print your design. For 6 to 11 year olds.

Animals went in two by two
Wednesday 6 August: 10.30 am – 11 am
Search for special animals with magnifying glasses and explore Noah’s ark. Make animal pictures using pastels and paint. For 3 to 5 year olds. Squash and biscuits included.

Pop up Pilu
Friday 8 August: 10.30 am – 12 noon
Find out about the most popular dog in the galley and make pop ups. For 6-11 year olds.fashion museum

Fashion Museum
Draw and paint it
Tuesday 29 July, 10.30am – 12.30pm and 1.30pm – 3.30pm
Explore the designs and motifs in our GEORGIANS exhibition and use watercolours to design an outfit.
Booked craft session for 11 to 16 year olds – bookings in advance at the Fashion Museum reception £5.00 per child.

Get started with crazy wool
Wednesday 30 July, 10.00am – 12 noon
Try this special technique to make an individual brooch. For 11 to 16 year olds. £5 each.

Colour it
Tuesday 5 August: 10.30am – 12 noon & 1.30 pm – 3.30 pm
Investigate the jewel colours in our Georgians exhibition and use them in a design of your own. Family drop-in.

Get started with rag rugs
Wednesday 6 August: 10.00am – 12 noon
Try this technique and make a rag rug. Craft session for 11 to 16 year olds. £5 each.

Normal admission prices apply to all Roman Baths and Fashion Museum family drop-in events, but are free to resident Discovery Card holders. Special craft sessions at the Fashion Museum for 11-16 year olds are £5 per participant. Please book at the Fashion Museum reception.
All Victoria Art Gallery events cost £4 per participant and must be booked in advance on 01225 477244. All children must be accompanied by an adult.

Residents can apply for a Discovery Card by taking along two forms of ID to the following Council buildings: the Roman Baths; Riverside in Keynsham; The Hollies in Midsomer Norton and also the Discovery Card point in the One Stop Shop on Manvers Street, Bath.

For more details of heritage events including listings, the online leaflet and website links for the Roman Baths, Fashion Museum and Victoria Art Gallery, visit http://www.bathnes.gov.uk/heritageevents or pick up a leaflet in your local library.

Health and the roman baths.

Health and the roman baths.

Nice to receive a Tweet from @DrJennersHouse which is helping look after publicity for  Dr Jenner’s House and Garden – formerly The Edward Jenner Museum – at The Chantry in Berkeley, Gloucestershire.

Dr Jenner's House - The Chantry

Dr Jenner’s House – The Chantry

Edward Jenner was the 18th century local doctor who pioneered the smallpox vaccine – the world’s first vaccination – which led to the science of immunology.

It’s a little out of the Virtual Museum of Bath’s patch but they have an event coming up which is certainly connected with a big chunk of our history!

They’ve  asked me to promote a talk by Dr Roger White – entitled ‘Mens sana in corpore sano – an exploration of Roman baths, bathing and medicine’ coming up at the Museum’s Old Cyder House Conference Centre on Monday, July 14th at 7.30.

He’ll be looking at Roman understandings of health and cleanliness, and how you could usually find a doctor in the bathhouse.

Dr White is the Academic Director of the Ironbridge International Institute for Cultural Heritage and a specialist in Wroxeter Roman City.

For more information you are asked to ring 01453/810631 or email info@edwardjenner.co.uk. You can also read more about the talk and the Edward Jenner Museum on www.jennermuseum.com

 

 

 

Half-term family fun @ city museums

Half-term family fun @ city museums

roman baths
Children are being given an opportunity to get creative at a range of half-term holiday activities organised by Bath & North East Somerset Council’s museums.

From Monday 26 to Friday 30 May in Bath, the Council-run attractions are hosting a number of craft sessions for the whole family to enjoy. They include everything from creating your own imperial crown at the Roman Baths to a Flowers & Bugs session at the Victoria Art Gallery.

The events include:

Glorious Rome
Family drop-in activity, Roman Baths
Monday 26 – Friday 30 May
10am-1pm & 2pm-4pm
Get to know about Roman Emperors from Roman coins and make an imperial crown.

Special Silhouettes
Family drop-in activity, Fashion Museum
Tuesday May 27
10.30am-12.30pm & 1.30pm-3.30pm
Explore the Georgians exhibition and create special silhouettes using card.

Flowers and bugs
Victoria Art Gallery
For 3 – 5 year-olds.
Thursday May 29
10.30am-12noon & 2pm-3pm
Find creepy crawlies in the gallery; make flowers and butterflies. Squash and biscuits included.

Bath's Victoria Art Gallery.

Bath’s Victoria Art Gallery.

Window on the World
Victoria Art Gallery
Friday May 30
For 6 to 11-year-olds.
10.30am-12noon & 1.30pm-3pm
Create a view through a window using mixed media, exploring the gallery’s paintings for ideas.

Admission to Bath & North East Somerset Council’s family drop-in events at the Roman Baths and Fashion Museum are free to local residents on production of a Discovery Card. Normal entry prices apply to everyone else.

The events at the Victoria Art Gallery cost £4 per child and must be booked in advance on 01225 477233. All children must be accompanied by an adult for all events.

Residents of Bath and North East Somerset can apply for a Discovery Card by taking along two forms of ID to the following Council buildings: the Roman Baths; Riverside in Keynsham; The Hollies in Midsomer Norton and the One Stop Shop on Manvers Street in Bath.

For more details of heritage events including listings, the online leaflet and website links for the Roman Baths, Fashion Museum and Victoria Art Gallery, visit http://www.bathnes.gov.uk/heritageevents or pick up a leaflet in your local library.

Royal opening for new temple walkway.

Royal opening for new temple walkway.

Their Royal Highnesses The Earl and Countess of Wessex have visited the Roman Baths to re-open the newly-renovated Temple Precinct on Monday May 12, as part of a tour of Bath, which also included a visit to Bath Abbey.

Prince Edward Earl of Wessex and Sophie Countess of wessex visit the Roman Baths. May 2014. Photographer Freia Turland e:info@ftphotography.co.uk m:07875514528

Prince Edward Earl of Wessex and Sophie Countess of Wessex visit the Roman Baths. May 2014. Photographer Freia Turland e:info@ftphotography.co.uk m:07875514528 Click on images to enlarge.

They saw how the uncovering of the Roman Temple Precinct has increased space for visitors and revealed more of the ancient monument.

Prince Edward Earl of Wessex and Sophie Countess of wessex visit the Roman Baths. May 2014. Photographer Freia Turland e:info@ftphotography.co.uk m:07875514528

Prince Edward Earl of Wessex and Sophie Countess of Wessex visit the Roman Baths and view the head of Minerva. May 2014. Photographer Freia Turland e:info@ftphotography.co.uk m:07875514528

The display of the gilt bronze head of the goddess Sulis Minerva has been completely re-designed and a tactile model put in place for the benefit of visitors who may be partially-sighted.

The Earl of Wessex was last at the Abbey for his investiture as Chancellor of the University of Bath.

Bath & North East Somerset Council has made major improvements to the Roman Baths, including opening up a new, previously hidden, area and improving access for visitors.

The new suspended walkway across the temple precinct.

The new suspended walkway across the temple precinct.

A new suspended walkway has also been put in place above the Temple Precinct, giving visitors an aerial view of the ancient monument below. Full wheelchair access will follow in the autumn when two new lifts are installed.

Prince Edward Earl of Wessex and Sophie Countess of wessex visit the Roman Baths. May 2014. Photographer Freia Turland e:info@ftphotography.co.uk m:07875514528

Prince Edward Earl of Wessex and Sophie Countess of Wessex try a glass of natural spring water. May 2014. Photographer Freia Turland e:info@ftphotography.co.uk m:07875514528

There’s also a new lighting scheme at the Roman Baths, which uses 80% less energy than previously but is also better quality.

Bath & North East Somerset Council’s Head of Heritage Services, Stephen Bird, said: “We’re delighted that the Earl and Countess of Wessex came to Bath to officially re-open the Temple Precinct.

“These improvements to the Roman Baths will make the experience much better for our visitors. The imaginative lighting scheme also supports the Council’s drive to reduce energy bills and energy consumption.”

Countess and Earl looking at the Norman foundations

Countess and Earl looking at the Norman foundations. Photo  © Deborah Coleman

At Bath Abbey, official photographer Deborah Coleman followed the Royal couple around the church during which they stopped to peer through a glass-topped trench to view the Norman foundations below the present building.

The Royal couple with the Rector of Bath Abbey.

The Royal couple with the Rector of Bath Abbey. Photo © Deborah Coleman

They were also told of plans to stabilise the Abbey floor and use thermal water to heat it afterwards – supported by a Heritage Lottery Fund application which is due to be ruled upon in a couple of weeks.

Reverend Prebendary Edward Mason, Rector of Bath Abbey, said: “We are delighted that the Earl and Countess of Wessex were able to include the Abbey in their visit to Bath. It was a wonderful opportunity for us to give the royal couple a glimpse of what we do here at the Abbey.

They met and spoke with several members of staff, some of our congregation and our youngest choir, the Melody Makers, who gave an impromptu concert. They also learnt about our work with the homeless through the Genesis Trust, our recent floor repair and heating trial and our future plans for the Footprint project.

Half-term family fun at city museums

Half-term family fun at city museums

Children are being given an opportunity to get creative at a range of half-term holiday activities organised by Bath & North East Somerset Council’s museums.

From Monday 26 to Friday 30 May in Bath, the Council-run attractions are hosting a number of craft sessions for the whole family to enjoy. They include everything from creating your own imperial crown at the Roman Baths to a Flowers & Bugs session at the Victoria Art Gallery.

The Great Bath

The Great Bath

The events include:

Glorious Rome
Family drop-in activity, Roman Baths
Monday 26 – Friday 30 May
10am-1pm & 2pm-4pm
Get to know about Roman Emperors from Roman coins and make an imperial crown.

Special Silhouettes
Family drop-in activity, Fashion Museum
Tuesday May 27
10.30am-12.30pm & 1.30pm-3.30pm
Explore the Georgians exhibition and create special silhouettes using card.

Flowers and bugs
Victoria Art Gallery
For 3 – 5 year-olds.
Thursday May 29
10.30am-12noon & 2pm-3pm
Find creepy crawlies in the gallery; make flowers and butterflies. Squash and biscuits included.

Window on the World
Victoria Art Gallery
Friday May 30
For 6 to 11-year-olds.
10.30am-12noon & 1.30pm-3pm

The Rotunda at the top of the staircase.

The Rotunda at the top of the staircase in the Victoria Gallery..

Create a view through a window using mixed media, exploring the gallery’s paintings for ideas.

Admission to Bath & North East Somerset Council’s family drop-in events at the Roman Baths and Fashion Museum are free to local residents on production of a Discovery Card. Normal entry prices apply to everyone else.

The events at the Victoria Art Gallery cost £4 per child and must be booked in advance on 01225 477233. All children must be accompanied by an adult for all events.

Residents of Bath and North East Somerset can apply for a Discovery Card by taking along two forms of ID to the following Council buildings: the Roman Baths; Riverside in Keynsham; The Hollies in Midsomer Norton and the One Stop Shop on Manvers Street in Bath.

For more details of heritage events including listings, the online leaflet and website links for the Roman Baths, Fashion Museum and Victoria Art Gallery, visit www.bathnes.gov.uk/heritageevents or pick up a leaflet in your local library.

Keynsham’s Roman history on display

Keynsham’s Roman history on display

Roman mosaic panels from the Durley Hill Roman villa will go on display in Bath & North East Somerset Council’s new Keynsham development when it opens later this year. You can see how they are being cleaned and conserved by expert conservators from Cliveden Conservation in preparation for that display at a free event on Saturday 10 May.

Roman mosaics

Roman mosaics

On this open day – held at the Pixash Lane Archaeology Store – you can see conservation work in action and get up close to the marvellous mosaics discovered when the cemetery was extended in the 1920s.

An illustration featuring Europa and the bull!

An illustration featuring Europa and the bull!

You can talk to the conservators working on the project and curatorial staff from the Roman Baths will be on hand to talk about the style and significance of the mosaics and about other recent archaeological discoveries in the Keynsham area.

At the same time you will be able to explore other archaeological finds from Keynsham including decorative stonework from the Medieval Abbey, as well as finds and some unusual graffiti rescued from the Combe Down Stone Mines before they were filled in during the stabilisation works.

Another Abbey relic.

Another Abbey relic.

Young people can also have fun looking for objects on our trail through the archaeological store and designing their own Medieval floor tiles

Cllr Ben Stevens (Lib-Dem, Widcombe), Cabinet member for Sustainable Development, said: “Whilst the public has witnessed Bath & North East Somerset Council’s ongoing Keynsham town centre development, work has also been going on behind the scenes to prepare the Durley Hill villa mosaics for display. This gives local people a great opportunity to see some of that work in progress, ask questions about local archaeology and meet some of the people involved in the project.”

The Archaeology Store is next to the recycling centre on Pixash Lane and will be open to the public from 11am to 3pm.