Cold Bath Road Mystery

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Help unravel The Cold Bath Road Mystery - a curious tale of disappearance and transformation in Edwardian Harrogate

Performance dates

A free family event combining puppetry, performance and storytelling. It's 1907 and Miss Emmeline Larkspur, a celebrated botanical artist, has vanished on a visit to Harrogate. She was last seen in the vicinity of the disused bathhouse on Cold Bath Road and your help is needed to solve the mystery of her disappearance.

The story will unfold as audiences take a gentle stroll up Cold Bath Road, one of Harrogate’s most attractive streets, to the source of Harrogate’s original cold spring. A series of artists’ installations and clues along the way will help reveal the mystery, which culminates in a visual transformation that will delight all those that witness it.

The Cold Bath Road Mystery is one of 47 events officially selected to be a part of Yorkshire Festival 2014 - the first ever 100-day festival to precede the Grand Départ in its 111 year history. Presented by North Yorkshire based Chrysalis Arts, this event is also part of North Yorkshire Open Studios 2014.

The performances start at The Royal Pump Room Museum, Crown Place, Harrogate HR1 2RY and last about an hour.

Advance booking is not necessary but participants will need a copy of a trail map which can be collected in advance from the Royal Pump Room Museum, Mercer Art Gallery, Harrogate Tourist Information Centre, Cold Bath Road shops and galleries and North Yorkshire Open Studio artists based in Harrogate. The trail can be followed at other times by following the map.

The Cold Bath Road Mystery is led by writer and storyteller Matthew Bellwood and artist and puppeteer Viv Mousdell. It also features work by visual artists Josie Beszant, Kate Maddison and Serena Partridge. The road will be festooned with Edwardian-style decorations and garlands that were created in community workshops and by the students and families of Western Primary School. 

One of the aims of the project is to encourage people to explore an area of Harrogate which they might otherwise miss and to do so at a gentle pace, spending time visiting some of the interesting shops and galleries to be found there. “As an arts organisation, we have a strong commitment to the Slow Movement and to creating and commissioning art which encourages people to take their time to enjoy it,” comments Chrysalis Arts Director, Rick Faulkner. 


Further information about the project is at or on twitter @ColdBathSlowArt or

1. Photograph of Emmeline Larkspur
2. Cage by Josie Beszant
3. Fly Agaric Mushrooms
4. Mules by Serena Partridge
5. Contents of Miss Larkspurs purse
6. Cocoons by Josie Beszant
7. Souvenir Day Glove by Serena Partridge
8. Miss Larkspurs Handkerchief
9. Gateaux by Serena Partriidge
10. Miss Larkspurs gloves
11. Ink bottle, pen, nibs and postcards
12. Butterfly Installation by Josie Beszant
13. Dinner Dress and Maiden in garden.
14 Bath-house Installation by Kate Maddison.

Images include artworks by Josie Beszant and Serena Partridge.

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