The history of No.15
The story so far
Frivolity, flirtation and those who fell from grace are all part of Great Pulteney Street’s fascinating story so far
Turn back time
No.15 Great Pulteney sits on Bath’s most iconic neoclassical street, and is made up of a collection of Georgian townhouses with a rich and distinguished past. Even now, as you stroll along its wide pavements – away from the fountain at Laura Place towards the trompe l’oeil outlines of the Holburne Museum – you can almost breathe in the history.
Looking back, we discovered that No.15 Great Pulteney has always been a hub for the city’s beau monde. Scratch the elegant surface, and these beautiful Bath stone walls have been home to everyone from roguish money-laundering admirals and promiscuous colonels to the more genteel titled ladies, perfumers and commissioners of police. We like to imagine that intrigue and drama are part of the very fabric of the buildings, and that entertaining, excitement and extravagance are as much a part of the history as the awe-inspiring structures themselves.
We also like to think that we’re following in the footsteps of our predecessors when it comes to hosting. It was Ellen Hannah Rains who was the driving force behind the creation of the old Carfax Hotel in 1921 – which went on to weather the Blitz and, in one particularly dramatic incident, a delivery van crashing through a window – before it was turned into a temperance hotel for visiting servicemen by the Salvation Army after the Second World War.
At No.15 Great Pulteney, we’ve seen the classical Grade-I façade belie the often very eccentric sum of its inhabitants throughout every stage of its history. It’s this sense of unique personality and ultimately, the unexpected, that we hope we’ve reignited and imbued within our beautifully restored boutique townhouse today.
Millionaire William Pulteney acquired the rural parish of Bathwick.
The corner stone of Laura Place was laid on 25 March and the day after the ceremonial start of building, Henrietta Pulteney signed the first leases for building plots on what was to become Great Pulteney Street.
Initially used as family dwellings, or as a second home, No.15 was the first to be advertised as a lodgings house, followed by No.13 in 1866 and No.14 in 1871.
Ellen Hannah Rains opened the Carfax Hotel at 13 Great Pulteney Street.
It was in March of this year when a plan was approved by the council to amalgamate numbers 13-15 Great Pulteney into one building for the Carfax Hotel.
The Carfax Hotel operated as a temperance hotel after World War II and was run by the Salvation Army until 2013.
No.15 Great Pulteney opened in December.