Analysis of Historical City BATH
The purpose of doing this assignment is to demonstrate a clear acknowledgment in the subject. To strongly demonstrate an understanding of good management of a heritage site/destination, and challenges that the management has to face in order to maintain an appropriate administration of the particular site attraction. The Historical city I chose to study is Bath.
The paper will begin by showing a brief overview of the chosen historical site for this particular study, and also explaining how the city received the status of a World Heritage site. Furthermore, a summary of the key attraction will also be presented due to its importance of another form of attracting visitors to the Historical City. An analysis of the stakeholder management will be presented, followed by the visitor management issues, transport management issues, findings as it is important to understand whether the organization generates sufficient fund to keep the institution running if it is private or public funds. A recommendation to the management issue will also be presented followed by its own implication. At the end, a summary of the study will be presented as a conclusion to the assessment.
In order to complete this study, I will revise all the necessary materials given to me in the class, do my own research by using all the appropriate literature as well as the necessary resources such as the internet sites if relevant.
Overview of the historical city
The county of Somerset located in the southwestern part of England hosts the historical city of Bath. The city of Bath is situated 21 kilometers from the eastern side of Bristol and one hundred and fifty-six kilometers from the west side of London. The historical city is home to a population of eighty-five thousand, individuals and was granted the status of a city by Queen Elizabeth the first in the year 1590, and in the year 1889 it was put in the position of a county borough and this consequently meant that it would gain administrative independence from its former county which was Somerset, (Thomas Rod 2008).
After the county of Avon was created in the year 1974, the city then became part of Avon. The year 1996 saw the abolishment of the county of Avon and since then the city of Bath became the prime center which had the unitary authority of North East Somerset and Bath. the year 1987 saw the city of Bath given the status of a world heritage site due to the numerous attraction sites that were present in the city which consisted of Museums, theatres as well as sporting and cultural sites which as have made the city to be the main destination for tourism (Rowse (1995).
Due to the diversity of the provision of the tourist attractions sites and avenues the city annually has over one million visitors who stay in the city with over 3.8 million day visitors. The city also has education facilities such as schools, universities, and colleges that make it more attractive to tourists since some of them prefer to study in the amazing environment of the city, (www.bbc.co.uk).
Key attractions in the city of bath.
One of the key attractions in Bath city is the parks that it has. Bath has a number of public parks which provide a maple environment for visitors to relax. One of the major parks of the city is the Royal Victoria Park and is located in a short distance from the city centre. In the year 1830, Princess Victoria who by then was only eleven years old opened the park and this saw it become the first park to go by her name. The park is fifty-seven acres in size and possesses various attractions. This includes tennis courts, Skate Park, bowling, a golf course, children’s play section as well as many other attraction facilities. Thomas Rod (2008).
Another key park in Bath city is the Royal Crescent park and is a registered as a park of national historic importance by the English heritage, and it also the national standard for parks and green places in England by receiving the ‘Green Flag Award’. The Royal crescent came into being in the year 1887 and is 9.5 acres in size with botanical gardens and limestone which has a collection of plants in the west county. Thomas Rod (2008).
Bath city is also home to other parks such as the Alexandra Park which has an overlook of the city. Others include the Parade Gardens which is located in the city center near the Abbey along the riverfront. These parks and others are a big attraction to visitors and tourists who go to Bath city to have an experience that they cannot have in many other places. Thomas Rod (2008).
Historical sites that are in Bath city are also a major attraction site for many of the tourists who visit the city. One of the historical sites is the Roman Bath which is termed as a World Heritage Site to visitors who after arriving in the site are able to discover amazing historical sites that are situated around the Roman Baths and the Royal Crescent. The site is the only hot spring in Britain and has a splendid temple with a bathing complex that has flowing natural water. (Rowse 1995). Visitors of the site are able to view the source of the water and are also able to have a sense of what the way in which the Romans walked on the stone pavements that surround the pool and is considered to be ancient. Visitors are also able to have a view of the valuables and treasures from the spring since they are presented and preserved appropriately.
Tourists who visit the site enjoy their time as they get to be told about the people who lived in the site more than 2000 years ago and are therefore bale to have a taste of the culture. This is accompanied by individuals who are Roman costumed as well as getting access to audio guides who can communicate in eight different languages. Other facilities such as beverages Spa water from the fountain are also provided to the tourists who are also able to enjoy the fantastic roman baths. Robert Bennet. (2002).
Another magnificent feature in the Roman Bath is a house that is considered to be one of the oldest in Bath. The house has historical origins and features as it is widely known for the ‘Sally Lunn’ Bun. Visitors of the Bath are able to view the house’s excavations that are an indication that the site was used for the purposes of refreshing travelers and town dwellers during the Roman times. The ancient refreshment rooms are used for the purposes of serving an interesting meal course for visitors who are treated to a ‘Saly Lunn’ bun accompanied by coffee or tea. (O’Leary T2003)
Bath city is also home to a number of museums such as the Holburne Museum that is home to impressive collected works such as sculptures and paintings among many others. Tourists are able to locate and view a wide range of impressive and beautiful collections of art in the Holburne. The museum is home to galleries and other facilities located on an adjacent park such as coffee opens which are on gardens that provide the visitors with refreshing and delicious snacks such as cakes and coffee as well as seasonal lunches. The Museum also has a program where there is a change of events and exhibitions hence frequent visitors are able to have a special familiarity every time they visit the museum. This is done by provision of various displays and collections in the museum accompanied with information bout various ancient objects that are put on the floor of the museum. Borsay Peter (2000).
The Royal crescent also provides tourists and visitors with a wonderful experience as some artifacts that enables the visitors to have an experience of how people lived in Bath during the 18th century. The rooms in the museum are designed in to conform the interior designing such as that of Georgia, as they are characterized by high quality paintings, textiles, carpets, and furniture. The museum also has other features such as a dining room which is set for dessert as well as a Gentleman’s study with pipes and port. Borsay Peter (2000).
Due to the various attraction sites that are in Bath city numerous amount of tourists visit the city hence making tourism one of the principal industries of the city. The city is home to more than one million visitors and over 3.8 million day visitors. In the year 1987, the city was termed as UNESCO world heritage site hence making the visits to the city to be linked to heritage and cultural tourism. The city is home to over three hundred accommodation facilities with over eighty hotels and bed and breakfasts that amount to over one hundred and eighty and this has a large number situated in the Georgian buildings. (Borsay Peter 2000).
The visitors are also able to have access to campsites that are situated in the western side of the city. Restaurants are also available to the visitors and total to about one hundred and are accompanied by bars and public houses. Visitors and tourists are able to access the city’s various facilities through bus tour services that are offered by companies that enable the tourists to move to various places in the city, while other companies offer services of foot tours to locations and areas around rivers. The Bath Spa enables the visitors to enjoy a bath in spring waters that are naturally heated and is the only one in the United Kingdom, (Robert Bennet 2002).
Stakeholders and management
Bath city has stakeholders who range from the bath bus company which operates the city’s tour buses for the purposes of sightseeing, to the transport and heritage departments who come from Bath and North East Somerset Council. Other stakeholders include the world heritage manager and the city center manager. In the year 1934, the formation of the Bath Preservation Trust took place when there were concerns of safeguarding the historical city of Bath.
The trust had the duty of encouraging and ensuring the evolution and enhancement of Bath and its surroundings. It was also the responsibility of the trusts to ensure that there were educational resources which could portray the historic and architectural significance of the city. Other groups that were involved in the management of the city are the English Heritage in association with the Bath and North East Somerset Council. A steering group which consisted of a partnership committee that has the role of overseeing and monitoring various issues that are planned for implementation. Another associate is the World Heritage Site Co-coordinator who has among other duties the role of ensuring that there is progress on annual programs, implementing the actions that have been decided upon as well as recruiting and coordination activities of partners and monitoring the condition of the various sites. Fitch James Marston (1999).
Management of Bath city is usually conducted by the partnership of Bath and North East Somerset Council together with the English Heritage and this happens under the guidance of a steering group. Local and national organizations, as well as representatives from various areas and sectors of the city, form a partnership committee which constitutes the steering group. Consultations between individuals and groups as well as various stakeholders take place to ensure that the city is managed in a manner that portrays the wide variety of interests that exist in the world heritage city. Fitch James Marston (1999).
There have been concerns in the recent years that a world heritage city such as Bath would require for there to be active management. The stakeholders were required to have management practices that met the requirements of the United Kingdom’s government. The stakeholders are required to manage the city by having the necessary coordination so as to have the ability to handle change in an approach that would be of benefit to both the society and the historic environment. This would enable the historical city to remain relevant as a heritage city that is internationally significant in this 21st century as there is competition from other tourist destinations. (Davenport Peter 2002).
The management of Bath city involves a framework where there are conservation efforts of assets of cultural heritage. This includes a wide range of protection and enrichment of archeological, architectural as well as natural assets and the urban landscape on which they exist. The historical city is also used as an educational resource and this is done by aiding in comprehending and interpretation of the various sites in the city as well as enabling the local society in its social cultural and economic activities. The management of the city ensures that it is aware of the various issues that pose challenges to the city as a world heritage city and the potential threats that could possibly affect the status of the city. It is in these issues that the management is able to recognize various areas in which the city is vulnerable and the gaps that exist in the manner in which the city is managed. (Davenport Peter 2002).
The management issues of the city were derived from an information base that was wide and varied and issues such as strategies to be used in management, advisory and planning documents as well as surveys and research are some of the concerns that management addresses. Various objectives are developed so as to ensure that the concerns regarding the development of the city that are raised are adequately addressed and the objectives also serve as a platform for the overall management of the historical city.
Those involve in management of the city ensure that after there is the development of objectives a plan of action is designed that outlines how he objectives are going to be achieved and also for the purposes of coordinating various activities that are designed to aid in management issues of the world heritage destination. In order to ensure that there is sustainable management of the city outstanding qualities and values that are termed to be universal for the heritage city are understood and sustained so as to enable the city to remain relevant even in the far future. Stipe Robert E (2003).
Such management enables the historical city of Bath to be promoted as a living and working city hence maintain and improve its status as a world heritage city. This also enables the development of a local, national and international feeling of ownership of the world heritage site hence promoting its status.
Visitor’s management is a very crucial aspect of the management of the historical world heritage city. This involves ensuring that the entrance point to the city have ready information that is of high quality and seeks to inform the visitors about the city. This is considered to be very essential as it portrays a good sign of hospitality in the city as the tourists are warmly welcomed to the city and are informed about the various attraction sites that they can visit. The city’s institutions ensure that there is local physical mobility by making sure that there is the infrastructure of the required standards as well as having the wit to handle numbers of increased visitors in areas that do not experience high number of visitors. (Creighton Oliver 2005).
Visitors are usually encouraged to make use of modes of transport that are sustainable such as buses, trains, taxis for the purposes of reducing the rate of visitors’ reliance on their own cars. This therefore effectively serves the purpose of reducing the number of automobiles that enter the world heritage city hence reducing the duration of time that is taken while moving from one attraction site to another. The management of the attraction sites, as well as other destinations in the city, ensures that they provide services that are of high quality. This is in order to enable the visitors to have a unique experience as well as ensuing that the international standards of the world heritage destination are upheld. (Creighton Oliver 2005).
For the purposes of marketing the city, the management ensures that it takes advantage of opportunities that arise with the appropriate utilization of the world heritage site status and the logo. This is usually aimed at encouraging visitors to stay for longer periods hence it becomes possible to increase every contribution that is made by every tourist who visits the world heritage site. This also ensures that those contributions from the visitors are able to be beneficial to the local society with an emphasis of their management and sustainability. Stipe Robert E (2003)
Transport management is also very essential in Bath city, as it incorporates many aspects related to traffic and pedestrian management. The uphold of effective transport management is aimed at minimizing the amount and volume of traffic that finds its way in and around the world heritage site. This is done by provision of alternative modes of transport after appropriate negotiations take place among the stakeholders in the transport sector in the city. This involves coordinating and working in accordance with a tour bus and coach operators so as to minimize as much as possible the negative publicity that they have and to make sure that visitors who use the public transport as their mode of transport have a memorable experience. Stipe Robert E (2003)
Management of the transport sector in Bath city also ensures that any additional traffic to the world heritage city is properly guided so as to ensure that there are no many challenges encountered as the visitors try to access the various attraction sites. It is provided that the available modes of transport are offered at affordable prices so as to prevent the visitors from spending a lot even before they start accessing the facilities and services that are offered by the numerous attraction sites. The city also offers increased access to the world heritage site for cyclists and pedestrians so as to avoid the over-reliance on the automobiles. This enables visitors to have a great view of the surroundings of the city as they can move at their own speed without having to be concerned about traffic. Stipe Robert E (2003)
For this reasons the council chiefs have come into conclusion to bun the traffic from the city Centre, this way they could make tourist journey enjoyable one as they would have more freedom to walk around the city and without much concern about the road been busy with lots of traffic. And as the Mr Symonds council representative also stated, this way the public transport would be more implemented with a better system to give people on bike foot and buses priority. He also stated that “this way there will be no bus delay and they will also arrive more often” (www.thisisbath.co.uk- 2012). However, there is also a possibility for local residents to disagree with the decision. For this regard, the council decided to consult the local residents before going forward with the decision, although they also have a decent strategy which is to use the recognition of number plates. These way local residents, business and residents associations do not get prejudiced (www.thisisbath.co.uk- 2012).
The Media and Sport/Wolfson Fund, as well as the Department of Culture in the United Kingdom, are some of the sources where the heritage city gets its funding from. Other sources include the Bath and North East Somerset Council who are involved in funding activities of the world heritage city. During the year 2009, Bath and North East Somerset Council gave a grant of ninety thousand pounds that were meant to adding to the funds for the enhancement and redevelopment of the Roman Baths that were being undertaken by the Department of Culture.
This was aimed at improving the condition of Museums and galleries in the country. Other attraction facilities are also able to increase resources from the fees that they charge the tourists hence covering maintenance and development projects. (ref)
In order for the world heritage city to maintain and improve the standards it has it is critical for the management of the city to continuously review the progress of the attraction facilities and sites that are present in the city. The management of the city together with other stakeholders should ensure that the attraction facilities and sits maintain certain set standards and that rectifications are appropriately made where there are defects in the services that are offered to the visitors. (David W Look 2002).
It is essential to have annual reviews that are accompanied by monitoring the progress of the implementation of decisions that have been agreed upon against the expected standards. This would make it possible, to be necessary adjustments that would ensure that the objectives that are set by the management are adequately realized. It is also important to put in place various indicators which would enable the management of the world heritage city to identify where there are impacts of change and to provide ample time to intercede so as to have the ability to maintain the standards of the city. David W Look (2002).
It should also be made clear to owners and users of facilities in and around the historic city and any property that has an impact on the world heritage site that they should maintain the quality and properly use such facilities. There should, therefore, be guidance and advice on the use of such facilities such as the Roman Bath so as to ensure that such facilities are sustained and that they will maintain the standards that they have been presented upon. (Stipe Robert E2003).
This would also enable such attraction facilities to be in existence for the long future. In situations where such facilities have been damaged the management should ensure that they are repaired and maintained so as to have the required standards. In situations where such facilities are damaged and they are not repaired it would dent the reputation of the city as a world heritage destination hence it is important that maintenance is upheld.
Implications of recommendations
Adopting the above recommendations would enable the historical heritage city to be able to develop risk management programs and plans that are effective and comprehensive and would enable the city to identify potential risks that might be detrimental to the city if they are not given the required attention. It would also be possible to continuously ensure that the expected world standards that are bestowed on the historic city are maintained and sustained and this would consequently mean that the city would continue to receive international visitors due to the effectiveness of the services that are offered by the attraction sites. It would also be possible for the world heritage city to have a positive impact on the local community as it would persuade visitors to visit the city due to the values that it posses. (Fitch James Marston1999).
Sustainability of the city and the attraction sites that are present would also be possible since any defects in the attraction sites would be immediately addressed hence high levels of maintenance.
Comprehensive management of a world heritage site such as Bath city is very essential if at all the city would be seeking to sustain the key attractions for the far future. In order to have a successful management of such as city it would call for commitment and efforts from all the stakeholders involved as lack of these could result in deficiency on a certain aspect of the city management.
Clear mechanisms should be put in place to ensure that objectives that are set are achieved within the necessary duration of time and this should be done by appropriate overseeing and coordination of management plans that need to be implemented. Furthermore, everyone who visits or lives in the historical city of Bath should ensure that they comprehend the concepts and values of the world heritage destination so as to ensure that they uphold standards that are aimed at conserving and protecting the attraction sites. This is important to ensure that the city retains its international standards.
Borsay Peter (2000) The Image of Georgian Bath, 1700-2000. Oxford, England: Oxford University Press.
Thomas Rod (2008) A Sacred landscape: The prehistory of Bathampton Down. Bath: Millstream Books.
Rowse (1995) Heritage of Britain: Treasure of London.
Robert Bennet. (2002) The last of the Georgian architects of Bath: Bath History
Davenport Peter (2002) Medieval Bath Uncovered. Stroud: Tempus.
Creighton Oliver Hamilton and Robert Higham. (2005). Medieval Town Walls: An archaeology and social history of urban defense.
O’Leary T (2003) ‘Excavations at upper borough, Bath.
David W Look (2002) Emergency Preparedness for Historic Sites.
Stipe Robert E (2003) A Richer Heritage: Historic Preservation in the Twenty-First Century. Chapel Hill.
Fitch James Marston (1999) Historic Preservation: Curatorial Management of the Built World. Charlottesville, VA: University press of Virginia.
Number of visitors per year in Bath: http://www.bbc.co.uk/insideout/west/series5/bath_tourism_thermae.shtml – accessed on 18/06/2012
http://www.thisisbath.co.uk/city-centre-traffic-ban-fare-bus-users/story-16428358-detail/story.html – accessed on 22/06/2012
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