Historic music venue headlines Bath's vaccine response

Bath's historic music venue The Pavilion opened its doors yesterday (12 January 2021) as the latest headline act in the city's response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Bath's Covid-19 Vaccine Centre at The Pavilion (Photo credit: B&NES Community Volunteer Service)

Repurposed as a city centre GP practice-led vaccination facility, BANES Community Volunteer Service published this fantastic image of a transformed venue. B&NES Enhanced Medical Services (BEMS) - an alliance of GP practices across Bath & North East Somerset - has worked tirelessly to provide this essential infrastructure for local residents to receive the vaccine - when invited to do so by the NHS.

Retaining its starcloth, glitterball and recognisable chandeliers, the temporary medical centre is a far cry from the rocking venue which has hosted music royalty such as The Beatles, Pink Floyd, Jimi Hendrix, Kraftwork and The Clash. The venue was also a regular fixture on the touring circuit for more recent bands including Oasis, Blur, Coldplay, Level 42 and Kaiser Chiefs.


And who can forget Monday nights in December 1968 featuring The Who and Led Zeppelin, who famously stood in as late replacements for the Jeff Beck Group and receiving a mere £75 fee for doing so.

And if you think this is the first time The Pavilion has seen vaccines, then think again!

As recently as April 2015, London-based indie rock band and NME Awards 2012 winners of 'Best New Band' The Vaccines, played a sold-out gig at the venue.

The Vaccines at Bath Pavilion on 4 April 2015 (Photo courtesy of Alex R Elms)

The Vaccines gig was captured by photographer Alex R Elms who kindly gave permission for one of his images to be used in this article (with many more available on Gigwise.)


Built in 1910 and originally Somerset County Skating Rink, the region's premium roller-skating was later repurposed as a live music venue with capacity for up to 1,000 music fans. The Pavilion has played its part in providing entertainment and recreation for people from Bath and beyond for over a century. And congratulations to all involved in its latest transformation, as it plays a leading role in the city's response to the pandemic.

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