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|Im not sure
Written by JulieW
(4/4/2006 9:50 a.m.)
in consequence of the missive, She came to be happy, and she felt happy already…, penned by Robbin
they would have stayed at the Sydney Hotel, however....;-)
From the description of their rooms in Pultney Street ,and the use of the word “lodgings” I think it far more likely that they did as most fashionable people did and lease a house or rooms on a house for the season.
Also note that the Sydney “ hotel” ( now the Holbourne Museum, see link below) was primarily a place of pleasure-tea rooms, card rooms and ballrooms were part of the package, it being set in the pleasure garden’s (Sydney Gardens) and there was also( horrors)a public house on the ground floor open to the lower orders and where waiting footmen and chairmen could drink before taking theire employers home. I’m not sure Mr Allen would allow Catherine or Mrs Allen to live on permises where gambling etc., took place, do you , though I agree it was historically possible.
( Modern note of interest- the Holbounre Museum and Pultney Street were used extensivley durning the filing of Vanity Fair starring Reese Witherspoon- have alook to spot the locations if you can!)
John Elgin in his good book The Imaginary Autocrat: Beau Nash and the Invention of Bath (2005) gives and account of the lodging house system in operation in Bath at the time:
Visitors increasingly preferred lodging-houses to inns ,given that a standard course of bathing, drinking or pumping lasted five to six weeks .Inns provided short-stay accommodation, where all the needs of the travellers-for example food, drink and housekeeping-were provided by the management. Inns also could function as taverns and eating houses and were often centres of local entertainment…Lodging houses provided longer term accommodation that afforded more privacy and where lodgers expected to see to themselves. Generally they would be accompanied by their own servants ,although the chatelaine and her staff were prepared to provide cooking and housekeeping for visitors who required it”
The Reverend John Penrose, in his book “Letters from Bath notes that his Bath landlady, Mrs Grant was exasperated when his family arrived on her doorstep in the Abbey Green without any servants. She condescendingly informed him that while servants at a boarding house might serve meals or run errands, servants in a lodging house would not, although they would clean rooms, make beds , light fires and cook.
Alternatively lodgers could hire servants locally for the duration of their stay, as the Penroses were , luckily, able to do. Maids could be had for half a crown( 2 shillings and sixpence)a week; the Penroses found a 15 year old willing to work for two shillings a week plus meals and two women who also lodged with Mrs Grant , no doubt appalled by their landlady’s behaviour, offered the services of their maids for errands.
John Eglin also notes that :
Lodging houses were more socially exclusive in other ways as well. While innkeepers were prepared to house travellers who turned up unannounced, lodging houses were usually engaged well in advance. Even after the building boom in the first half of the 18th century sets of rooms in Bath houses were let mostly by word of mouth and were really only available to visitors with the requisite social networks.
“If your Ladyship has any method of getting Lodgings at Bath” Elizabeth Anson wrote to Lady Grey in August 1749,” be so good as to peruse it “ as she had heard it was necessary to procure them at least three weeks ahead of arrival.
Does this help?
|The Holbourne Museum|
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