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A Short history of the Guildhall

The earliest reference to a Guildhall in Bath is in a deed of 1432-33 although there has probably been a Hall or Council Chamber in the city since at least the 13th Century. Around 1569 it was decided to move the Guildhall to the centre of the Market Place at the bottom of the High Street which runs in front of the current building. 


The Old Guildhall and covered market, apart from obstructing traffic, soon proved to be inadequate to the needs of the growing city. After a number of false starts, the new Guildhall, designed by Thomas Baldwin, was finally completed in 1778. Baldwin was one of the leading architects of Georgian Bath and designed some of its principal buildings including the Pump Room. 


In 1891, John McKean, the Scots architect who was also responsible for the design of the concert room extension to the Pump Room, added two wings to include additional council offices and a technical school. The Victoria Art Gallery extension along Bridge Street was added a few years later.


The Register Office is based inside the Guildhall and can offer ceremonies within their ceremony rooms, please click here to see the Registration Ceremony Rooms.


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