Nothing but a load of hot air:
some problems, conflicts, and controversies
arising during the development
of the Victorian Turkish bath

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Victorian Turkish Baths: their origin, development, and gradual decline

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10: Coda

Despite such controversies and technical problems, Turkish baths became increasingly popular throughout Victoria’s reign, with their gradual decline only beginning shortly after World War I.

The five last Victorians
1868 Swindon
1871 Glasgow: Arlington Baths Club
1878 Glasgow: Western Baths Club
1897 Harrogate
1901 Edinburgh: Portobello Baths

In the UK in August 2016, only twelve Victorian-style Turkish baths were still open: five designed during Queen Victoria's reign, and seven later ones.


In presenting a paper on this little-studied subject within a 20 minute conference slot, I had to choose between dealing in slightly greater depth with one or two issues, or trying to give a more general view of a range of issues arising from the introduction of the Turkish bath into Victorian Britain.

In the event, I chose the latter approach as being more likely to interest a greater number of those attending the conference in the hope that they might find links between the Victorian Turkish bath and their own areas of interest.

Some of these issues will be treated more fully on the website in due course.

This page revised and reformatted 14 January 2022

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Mr Punch visits the Turkish bath

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Victorian Turkish Baths: their origin, development, and gradual decline

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