Bath Bus Station - A Review
Saturday February 13, 2010 17:45 by Liz Windsor
This is a review of the multimedia Bath Bus Station, now that it has been on general release for more than six months.
Review: Bath Bus Station
Don Foster MP: “Fabulous. Amazing. Wonderful”
Directed by: Multi
Starring: First Bus
Duration: Probably not many years
Classification: Not suitable for persons of 15 years of age or over (or under)
Genre: Road Movie/Horror
Black and white
In the absence of an usherette I found myself a charmlessly utilitarian metal seat. However, from there I couldn’t see whether the main star – the X39 to Bristol – was about to make an appearance because it was behind a large map and opaque doors. By the time I’d gone to find out when the leading role was due someone else had nabbed my seat. During the interval there were no toilets because they only open during office hours. There was no kiosk for popcorn or indeed any kind of refreshments – just a vending machine with overpriced, tooth rotting multinational juice which was in any case out of order. Rubbish on the ground because there were no recycling bins. Rules, regulations and surveillance. Three days after it opened the First empire struck back by putting the ticket prices up. What kind of a show is this?
Stars out of ten: NONE
Anyone who has had a brief encounter with the new Bath Bus Station will know it is bad and ugly when it could have been so good. Just imagine, gentle passenger, if there was a community-controlled public transport system in a society where resources were directed into socially useful projects. What a technicolour classic Bath bus station could have been! The Edwardian façade of the much-loved Churchill House retained as a rotunda with geothermal heating. On the roof-top a café with stunning views over the River Avon and the city of Bath. Room inside the building for transport help and bookings service, accessible twenty-four hour toilets (flushed with rain water and with urine harvesting facilitated of course) and perhaps a small exhibition space. The concourse built along the riverside with roof gardens and solar panels above providing electricity for real-time electronic information displays. Local artwork on the model of the Lisbon metro where painting and sculpture transforms the space for commuters. Oh and dry secure storage for bicycles and… sorry got to go now, I’m about to be kicked out for loitering.