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18thc and 19thc Tour Guides have historical info about the New Bath

Famous Derbyshire Health Resorts. The Matlocks, about 1892 - Part 1

The Old Bath in 1806

Matlock Bath Today (5)

Four images of the Georgian New Bath Hotel, three of which were taken shortly after the Second World War. The New Bath was the second hotel to be built in the village following the discovery of thermal springs and has undergone a number of alterations and extensions during its lifetime. The hotel celebrated its two hundred and seventy fifth anniversary in 2020. An announcement of its opening had been published in the Derby paper in 1745:

Derby Mercury, 10 May 1745

This is to give NOTICE,

THAT there is a BATH to be opened at MATLOCK on Monday next, the Water is as warm if not warmer than the other Bath, the Bath-Place is half as big again as the other large Bath ; and the Spring is so strong, that any Gentleman, (by waiting a little) may have it all let out and filled again with fresh Water.

By their humble Servant ISAAC NORTH.

N.B. My wife was formerly House-keeper at the old Bath.
P.S. This BATH will hold, at a moderate Depth; 290 Hogsheads and upwards ; whereas the other large Bath will not hold above 185 Hogsheads at the same Depth.

The earliest public notice found that mentioned property sales at the New Bath was in 1758[1].

Isaac North ran the establishment for about 22 years. He was followed by William Lovett in 1867 and George Saxton took over in 1788[1]. His son, George Withers Saxton, succeeded him.

In 1852 the hotel was described by William White as: "pleasantly situated at the South end of the Tufa Terrace, owed its existence to the second hot spring, that was discovered some years after the Old Bath. It has been enlarged at various periods, and now forms three sides of a quadrangle, and is a large and commodious establishment, with beautiful grounds[2]". When Miss Ivatts and Mrs. Jordan took over the management, five years afterwards, Francis White thought it was "a spacious building, replete with every comfort"[3].

The New Bath Hotel about 1892, when Mr. Tyack was the proprietor. He had already been at the hotel for 15 years.
From: Famous Derbyshire Health Resorts. The Matlocks, about 1892 - Part 1.
The three sided building noted by William White[2] had become four sided and the entrance moved to its present position.
The registers of both the New Bath and the Royal Hotel showed that half their visitors were from North America.
Thomas Tyack's departure saw the end a very long period of stability in the hotel's management.

Just under fifty years later, Benjamin Bryan commented on the hotel and its bath in 1903. "The "New Bath" is situate within the area of the Hotel to which it has given its name. This hotel is finely placed, has been thoroughly modernised, is luxuriously finished, and admirably managed. The bath, however, is very old fashioned. It is built of heavy masonry, with a low arched roof, almost in the foundations of the western wing; but although it has all the advantages of constant current, even temperature, and curative properties to be found elsewhere, it is not much used by visitors[4]".

New Bath Hotel, Matlock Bath
A clear view of the façade as well as a better reflection in the hotel's pond than in the top image.

Ward Lock Guides of the 1920s and 1930s also described the original bath, although the first sentence is somewhat confusing. "The New Bath, so called because the date of its discovery was later than that of the Old Bath, flows through the bath room of the New Bath Hotel. This bathroom is in the basement and is held by some to be an old Roman bath. The roof is a perfectly rounded arch and there is sufficient volume of water for swimming. This is probably the best place for realising the heat of the thermal water, the rise in temperature on entering the bath is very marked[5]".

Perhaps the modernisation Bryan referred to included changes to the front of the hotel in the late nineteenth century which can be seen on the modern building. An 1888 advertisement from Thomas Tyack's time at the hotel announced that the building had been extended[6]. Window mouldings, of painted stucco, were added above and around the window frames whilst the sash windows were made up of four panes of glass instead of the two shown in mid nineteenth century images. Quoins were also added to the corners of the building. The hotel sign eventually went from above the first floor windows to a long sign on the edge of the roof, although this is no longer on the building today.

New Bath Hotel, Matlock Bath
Another view of the front of the hotel; Bath Terrace is on the right of the building.

There is more about the New Bath Hotel

Eighteenth Century Lists: Statute Labour for Mending the Highways, 1761. Amongst the people listed was Isaac North, the first proprietor of the New Bath.
Lists Through the Centuries: Arrivals at Matlock Bath, 1820-1850. European Royal families and nobility, British politicians, academics, clergy, members of the British aristocracy and upper and middle classes of society. Some of them would have stayed at the New Bath.

Read about a fine incurred during World War 1
There is a poem about The New Bath Hotel and its Lime Tree (scroll down)
Another view of the hotel and its grounds, with the lime tree still standing, can be seen in the Just Images section.

1. Top post card. "New Bath Hotel, Matlock Bath" published by The R. A. Postcard Company Ltd of London, Foreign, No 10378.
Image shown on Michael Portillo's "Great British Railway Journeys" on BBC2 on 25 January 2010.
2. Engraving from: Famous Derbyshire Health Resorts. The Matlocks, about 1892 - Part 1, © Jo Fenwick collection.
3. Second post card. "New Bath Hotel, Matlock" published by Photochrom Co Ltd, Tunbridge Wells, Kent for Trust Houses Ltd. Not posted.
4. "New Bath Hotel, Matlock". also published by Photochrom Co Ltd, Tunbridge Wells, Kent for Trust Houses Ltd. Not posted. A pencilled note: "Lunch Sunday 12th May '52" is on the back.
All three postcards in the collection of, provided by and © Ann Andrews.
Researched by and written by and © Ann Andrews.
Intended for personal use only.

References (coloured links are to transcripts and information elsewhere on this web site):

[1] Matlock Public Notices & Announcements, 1758, 1767 and 1788. William Lovatt is named as a landowwner in the parish in Eighteenth Century Lists: Poor Rate, 1784 (part 2)

[2] "Gazetteer and General Directory of Sheffield, and all the Townships, Parishes and Villages Within the Distance of Twenty Miles Round Sheffield" by William White, published Sheffield, 1852.

[3] White, Francis (1857) "History, Gazetteer and Directory of the County of Derby ..." pub. Francis White & Co. Sheffield. See lists of names in the on site transcript

[4] Bryan, Benjamin (1903) "History of Matlock - Matlock, Manor and Parish" London by Bemrose & Sons, Limited.

[5] Ward Lock & Co's "Matlock, Dovedale, Bakewell and South Derbyshire", Illustrated Guide Books of England and Wales (1932-3), p.35-6

[6] Tyack's advert, published in Black's Guide, can be see on Matlock Bath, Derbyshire - The Switzerland of England