Classical Britain
A celebration of classically inspired architecture in Britain. Exploring its history, fine examples and future. By Sam Richards.

The Circus, Bath - England

"John Wood the Elder had an extraordinary vision for Bath.  Wood drank in the latest architectural ideas while working in London in his teens and early twenties. Passionately embracing Palladianism, he returned to Bath in 1727 afire to transform his native city. The young man’s imagination was feeding on the grandeur of Imperial Rome. Time and again his grand plans were thwarted or cut down to more practical size. He nonetheless imprinted his vision on Bath. He brought from London the concept of spacious squares and imposing terraces. His developments - the Parades and Queen Square - set a fashion in Bath that others were to emulate across the growing Georgian city.

The distinction of the Circus can scarcely be overstated. It was a powerfully original concept in urban planning. It is the centrepiece of an influential assemblage of square, circus and crescent. Although Wood brought the square from London to Bath, the circus and crescent were exported from Bath to London and elsewhere. The work of the Woods had a considerable impact on the British urban landscape.”

http://www.buildinghistory.org/bath/

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