Wickerwork bath chair, with metal frame, English, early 20th century
The Bath chair is a forerunner to the modern wheelchair. It was invented by James Heath and gained popularity and its name when used by visitors to the spa town of Bath from the 1700s. Many visitors who came to ‘take the waters’ were often in poor health. Although the occupant can guide the direction of the chair, an attendant pushes it from behind to provide the power.
Sedan chairs had been the most popular transport for individuals. They were carried by two or more people. However, the more convenient Bath chair had taken its place by 1830. Wheeled chairs had been used before in England, but the Bath chair’s popularity made it the vehicle of choice.
- Object Number:
- 1979-811 Pt3
- bath chair
- Department of Health & Social Security (DHSS)
Cite this page
We encourage the use and reuse of our collection data.
Data in the title, made, maker and details fields are released under Creative Commons Zero
Descriptions and all other text content are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 licence
Download catalogue entry as json
Download manifest IIIF
Our records are constantly being enhanced and improved, but please note that we cannot guarantee the accuracy of any information shown on this website.