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Delve into a universe of discovery in Bath

The UNESCO World-Heritage City of Bath is home to an array of diverse museums, including one dedicated to a Mr William Herschel, who on the 13th March 1781, discovered the planet Uranus through a homemade telescope in his back garden on New King Street, Bath. Today the unassuming Georgian townhouse is named in his honour, now the Herschel Museum of Astronomy; dedicated to acknowledging the achievements of William and his sister Caroline. Together they were responsible for the discovery of a planet, four moons, and multiple comets.

The compact museum houses a unique collection of the Herschels’ astronomical and musical artefacts, as both siblings were also accomplished musicians of their time, with some focus on the daily life of the English middle-class in the 1700s. The house today stands fully-restored to its original Georgian facade and holds the workshop in which Herschel created his telescopes, which were unrivalled at the time, as well as replicas of his machines. Today we are able to glimpse light from significantly more distant sources, with much of the advancements owed to Herschel, who in his dedicated observing alone is said to have doubled the known size of our solar system.

There is further astronomical inspiration attached to the legend embedded within the 18th century design of the city’s iconic Royal Crescent, which was built by John Wood the Younger and is said to have designed the architectural icon to represent the shape of the moon. His father was also known for his neo-classical architecture and was said to have given the hills around Bath titles like Sun and Moon Hill, with iconic areas of the city such as The Circus and The Parade also aligned with the planets above.

Please remember that Government guidelines currently state that we must continue to stay at home, but please wait patient in the knowledge that when we’re able to re-open, Bath Self Catering and the rest of the city will be ready to welcome you back, in-line with necessary safety measures, for a superb experience.

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Photography by Ed Collacott.
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