The Footprint Project is a £19.3 million programme of capital works and interpretation which provides highly innovative and sustainable solutions to the Abbey’s present and future needs. It reinforces Bath Abbey’s place at the centre of the UNESCO World Heritage City of Bath: A place of worship, a home to the community, a place with a rich history and a rich future.
Although the Footprint Project was initiated in 2010 and several preparatory phases have been completed, over the last 12 months it has begun to deliver its extraordinary transformational results that the public can see, feel and connect with.
In December last year, the final permission was granted for the main work to begin within the Abbey – approval from the Consistory Court of the Church of England allowing the Abbey to remove the pews in the main body of the church and replace them with removable chairs once the historic floor has been repaired.
Work started on site in May 2018, launching the first phase of the three-year programme. The pews have been lifted at the East End of the Abbey to expose the floor for the first time in 150 years. Archaeologists have been working with teams of volunteers to document every one of the ledger stones before they are lifted for storage and conservation while the floor is stabilised. During these excavations, objects have been discovered which give us deeper insight into the history of the Abbey.
Geoff Rich, Partner at FCBStudios said “At Bath Abbey we are rediscovering the most amazing stories of the building. Bath is one of only two World Heritage Cities and the Abbey is arguably Bath’s largest and most important historic building.”