Welcome to the new Independent website. We hope you enjoy it and we value your feedback. Please contact us here.

Jane Austen

More headlines

Jane Austen's Bath: Cream teas and genteel spas for ladies at leisure

There is something about a weekend in Bath that brings out one's inner Catherine Morland. With its perfectly proportioned terraces, serenely sloping cobbled streets and elegant crescents chastely embracing gated gardens, it's a city that drips decorum from its very building blocks. The quaint, ladylike pursuits of Jane Austen's heroines are still de rigueur here – taking the waters, perambulating in the parks, a spot of shopping and, of course, the clotted-cream ceremonies of an afternoon tea. If I'd happened upon a place to play a hand of whist or dance a cotillion, I would have donned my finest sprigged muslin and surely done so. Resistance is futile. And why resist? Why not cast off the corset of nasty, pacey modern life and sink into Bath's languorous, idle pleasures? Surely, my dear, it would be almost rude not to.