WOOD, John the Younger
(b. 1728, Bath, d. 1782, Batheaston)

General view

Royal Crescent, Bath

Bath, renowned as an English spa since Roman times because of its hot springs, became a centrepiece of urban planning which blended with the landscape. Between 1725 and 1782, John Wood the Elder and John Wood the Younger, father and son, planned the interior of this city on the banks of the Avon in Palladian style. The backbone of the design was provided by three monumental squares: Queen's Square (John Wood the Elder, 1729), the monumental Circus with its star-shaped junctions (John Wood the Elder, 1754), and Royal Crescent (John Wood the Younger, 1767-75), a crescent-shaped complex opening onto broad parkland and flanked by curving access roads.

Designed by John Wood the Younger as lodging-houses for the gentry on their visits to Bath, this crescent was completed in 1775. It was in the middle of farmland then and had wonderful sweeping views of the hills and Avon valley.

Bath has eight crescents. But the magnificent Royal Crescent is the finest – a world-famous icon and the city's most desirable location. John Wood the Younger designed the crescent as a row of 30 lodging houses for the gentry coming to Bath for the season.