30 September 2021 marks the 250th anniversary of the opening of Bath’s magnificent Assembly Rooms. As the queen of the eighteenth century spas, Bath’s healing waters attracted far more than the seriously ill and the worried well: the town offered the visiting Company luxury, culture, diversion and pleasure. This two-day virtual conference, which will take place on Zoom, takes, as a starting point, the plans for, and the establishment of, the (new) Assembly Rooms and then expands to explore an exciting array of papers by a group of international scholars. Topics include coffee-houses and chocolate-houses, chairmen and undertakers, famous musicians and celebrity politicians, lodging-house keepers and the visiting beau monde, the religion of Wilberforce and the satire of Austen — and far more.
Download the Bath 250 Programme and Bath 250 Abstracts
Evening Public Lecture and Dance Display
For those who are able to travel to Bath, there will be an evening public lecture and dance display to mark the 250th anniversary of the 30 Sept. 1771 opening of the Assembly Rooms.
17.45–18.00 Welcome and Introduction
18.00–19.00 Dr Jonathan Foyle (Visiting Professor in Conservation at the University of Lincoln; Director, Built Heritage, Ltd)
The Upper Assembly Rooms: Assembling the Influences on John Wood The Younger's Design
19.00–19.15 Hillary Burlock (PGR, QMUL): Ridotto Redux, 1771 in 2021
19.25–20.10 Dance Display, Ball Room: Bath Minuet Company
20.10–late Dispersal to a local hostelry for a commemorative tipple!
Registration: £10 (waged); £8 (concession/unwaged/ECR)
Tickets: Bath250 | University of Liverpool
Conference organisers: Hillary Burlock (QMUL), Elaine Chalus (University of Liverpool), Oliver Cox (TORCH, Oxford), Robin Eagles (History of Parliament), Rupert Goulding (National Trust)
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