Bronze Chairs Unveiled at Bath Riverside in Tribute to Famous Stargazers

Herschel Chairs

Bath’s newest permanent artwork has been unveiled at Bath Riverside in a tribute to two of the city’s most famous residents.

Two bronze cast Georgian-style chairs have been installed next to Victoria Bridge at Bath Riverside to commemorate the work of William and Caroline Herschel.

William Herschel was an accomplished musician and astronomer, and is credited for the discovery of the 7th planet, Uranus, in 1781.

His sister, Caroline Herschel would often sit outside their Bath home assisting William as he studied the night sky through home-made telescopes.

Their work was the inspiration for local artist Patrick Haines who was commissioned by Crest Nicholson Regeneration to create an artwork for Bath Riverside.

Patrick said, “When I was asked to create a new work for the riverside development it gave me the opportunity to take a period object such as a Georgian chair and take it outside to interact with the river view and night time stars.”

“I became aware of the work of William and Caroline Herschel who lived in New King Street around 1777-1782. They discovered many comets and planets becoming important figures of astronomy. I found the link regarding my sculpture through the references of Caroline sitting in a chair out in the street with William sweeping the heavens with his telescope for new planets.”

The chairs are positioned adjacent to the river, and are just one of many permanent art installations located in and around Bath’s newest residential quarter.

Debbie Aplin, Managing Director of Bath Riverside developer Crest Nicholson Regeneration says the chairs are important in linking Bath’s rich heritage with the future.

“The Herschels are two of Bath’s most famous residents in their own right, and it is fitting that we have created this permanent tribute to them. Both art and heritage are extremely important to the fabric of the development, and Patrick has done an excellent job of bringing the two together through an artwork that everyone can enjoy.”

“The Comet Sweeper installation is part of Bath Riverside’s over-arching art strategy. We have already incorporated an eclectic mix of artworks in and around the development from local artists, schools and colleges. These include bronze casts, stone carvings and etched windows and we will be adding more throughout the next phases.”

The artwork was unveiled on Friday at a ceremony at Bath Riverside.

For more information and to see a video of the unveiling, visit the Bath Riverside Community Facebook page.