Parade Gardens in Bath will host a day of free activities, including many for families and children, to celebrate World Heritage Day on Sunday 23 April, 11am-3pm.
World Heritage Day is marked at sites around the world each April. This year has special importance for Bath as the city celebrates 30 years of being a World Heritage Site.
The theme of this year’s celebrations will be ‘Waters of Bath’ and activities will focus on the past, present and future use and significance of Bath’s hot springs, river and canal network. Displays will be staged by local museums, archives and heritage organisations, and visitors will have a chance to find out about exciting new developments and restoration projects taking place in Bath.
There will be plenty to keep younger visitors busy. Children can follow the ‘Bookmark Stamp Trail’ to find out why Bath is so special; practise their engineering skills by trying to build Pulteney Bridge; explore old maps to see how Bath has changed over time; try their luck at World Heritage dominoes; test their knowledge of globally important places; and add a pin to a giant map to show which World Heritage Sites they have visited. They’ll also be invited to make a scented ‘spa posy’ or dragonfly to take home.
This year, for the first time, there will also be a programme of short talks. Local experts will explore different aspects of the water theme, including the medicinal use of spa water, the importance of the waterways in the Georgian development of the city, Bath’s cold water springs and minor spas, the use of thermal water to heat the Abbey, and the history of Bath’s river crossings.
Guided walks will be on offer throughout the day, ranging from a 30-minute Garden Tour, to a 75-minute tour around the river and canal, and longer walks to the Bath Skyline and Cleveland Pools.
Entertainment will be provided on the bandstand by Bath City Jubilee Waits playing traditional English waites (11am-12pm) and brass band the Bath Spa Band (2.30pm-3.30pm). To mark St George’s Day, Widcombe Mummers will perform ‘St George and the Dragon’ at 1pm.
Visitors can share their memories of the day by uploading their Pulteney Bridge selfies using #bathworldheritageday.