There is Bath town in about an hour from Reading. So the name is quite clear. The name comes from hot springs in this area which were discovered more than two thousands years ago even before Romans legions were here.
On my attempt to find the city centre I got lost a bit and found out myself somewhere in the backyards.
The day was quite gray, in such weather the city doesn’t look shiny and colourful (maybe it’s wrong time of year), though the whole impression was a bit gray. Sometimes even a bit melancholic.
On my way to the city centre I got into some backyards. Even the trail there was not really nice. Though the fact that there were people, especially ladies with babies, a bit calmed me down :)
Amid the gray city and weather the cricket field looks alien. Though it will serve good enough and for football match ;)
The houses are carefully well-groomed. It’s popular to have mini garden in front of your house. They do treat it well and therefore it looks very beautiful. It’s clean in the city. In general you have the feeling that you’re definitely not in megalopolis, but just in average city around 95-100 thousand people.
Due to hot springs in the old days it was some kind of resort city (well nowadays as well).
The place was named in a lot of different ways: Romans called it as Aquae Salis, saxons - Hat Bathun or Acemaner Ceaster (city of ill people). The last name comes of hot springs healing ability. A lot of people even nowadays come here because of medical care. The sign on the train station states Bath Spa.
In 18 century London high society noticed the city and since then every summer till the end of 19 century all rich and famous people were coming here. It was the centre of high society life during summer time.
Due to such a visitors there appeared a lot of new buildings in ancient Greek and Roman styles. That's why here one can find a lot of buildings and bridges like on the photos. However I didn't see a lot of tourists here.
The season to take a bath is from November to April, but tourists season is only during the summer. It's just 1.5h by train from London and it's really something worth to visit.
Local abbey was the main Abbey in Wales for a long time. So Edgar of England was crowned king of England in Bath Abbey in 10th century. It was a while since then.
Though I still remember it quite well (:
Finally the hot springs. First bath were build here in Ancient Romans times (yes, they were even here). After the time being it was demolished and forgotten. In 1770s English people accidentally discovered ruins of Romans baths. After a while there was opened a museum, so you can visit it even nowadays.
The bath is working only as museum. So if you want to wash yourself you better visit another place. There are several rooms in here. Some of them are under the roof, some are open air (though back in old times all were under the roof and it was really dark inside).
The temperature of the water in different rooms is different. From extremely hot (like in sauna) to a bit warm. Average is about +46. It is considered, that the bath helps in treatment of gout, rheumatism, and even paralysis. Though I can't say for sure whether it's true or not.
Before the bath itself there is a museum where one can find all the information about it: who and how used it, even huge parts of original wall. On the entrance one can take audio guide and listen to nice stories about the place. If it doesn’t cover all the information you need, there is also special people who’s happy to help you and answer any question you have.
Nearby Roman Baths there is a central walking street with a lot of shops and pubs. Just like in normal cities.
So it was it.