The British spa came into its own in the Georgian period, with thousands flocking to take the waters at Bath, Cheltenham and Tunbridge Wells as well as numerous other towns. As these towns grew, their reputation as fashionable destinations became as or more important than the benefits of bathing, which in any case often involved immersion in water tainted by dirt and diseases from fellow bathers. Ian D. Rotherham here traces the story of the British spa back to Roman and medieval times, through their heyday in Georgian and Victorian Britain and right up to their decline in the twentieth century and recent revival. With a wealth of colourful illustrations, this book is a perfect introduction to changing attitudes to public bathing and health, and describes the rise of some of Britain's most famous towns.
Spas and Spa Visiting