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Royal Crescent, Bath, England

February 18th, 2008 / / Links: Google Earth, Google Maps, Yahoo! Maps, Virtual Earth / Nearest places

The Royal Crescent is a notable residential road of 30 houses, laid out in a crescent, in the city of Bath, England. It was designed by the architect John Wood the Younger and built between 1767 and 1774. It is amongst the greatest examples of Georgian architecture to be found in the United Kingdom and is a grade I listed building. Together with his father John Wood, the Elder, John Wood the Younger was interested in occult and masonic symbolism; perhaps their creation of largest scale was their joint design of the Royal Crescent and the nearby Circus (originally called "the King's Circus"), which from the air can be observed to be a giant circle and crescent, symbolising the soleil-lune, the sun and moon. The Circus, along with Gay Street and Queens Square, forms a key shape which is also a masonic symbol.

The houses in the Crescent are a mixture of tenures — most are privately owned but a substantial minority of the property is owned by a housing association. Many of the houses in the Crescent have been split into flats.

Number 1 Royal Crescent is a museum, maintained by the Bath Preservation Trust, which illustrates how wealthy owners of the period might have furnished such a house.

The Royal Crescent Hotel occupies the central properties of the Crescent, numbers 15 and 16.

Royal Victoria Park near the Crescent is a location for the launch of hot air balloons. Launches take place in summer, typically early morning or late evening.

The road is one of the best known landmarks of Georgian Bath and for many years residents had to put up with tour buses passing their houses every few minutes during the summer. In recent years, however, the road has been closed to coaches and buses.

In 1965 the black comedy The Wrong Box (1966) used the Royal Crescent extensively as a location. It's thought by some that Oliver! (1968) used the Crescent for the 'Who Will Buy' sequence - this was, however, filmed on a massive set built for the production at Shepperton Studios.

In 2003, Time Team (series 10, episode 7) dug the Royal Crescent in search of a Roman cemetery and the Fosse Way.

[Source: Wikipedia]

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