Oakworth House:
plan of Turkish bath, billiard room,
and their surroundings

Plan of the baths actually built
< Courtesy: Stephen Sharp

Two years after Oakworth House was built, Isaac (later, Sir Isaac) Holden called in Joseph Constantine to advise him on its heating, and on the possibility of building of a Turkish bath.

Constantine drew up two alternative plans, one for a single storey bathhouse, and one with an additional basement for the furnace. It seems, however, that neither of these two options was acceptable to Holden, who chose a smaller bath.

This was sandwiched between a billiard room on one side, and a dynamo house and a potting house on the other, all within a small building close by the main house. A Convoluted Stove was located in the potting house so that it could heat both the Turkish bath and the billiard room. Holden was very keen on good heating and ventilation schemes, and also had air conditioning installed in his stables.

Unusually, the Turkish bath could only be reached from the billiard room. A door led into a vestibule at the end of which was a toilet which could be used by billiard players or bathers. Also opening off the vestibule were, at either end, the hot room (11ft 13ft) and the cooling-room (10ft 11ft), while between them was the shampooing room (11ft 12ft) with shower.

Thank you icon

Steve Sharp, whose family have been builders in the area for over 150 years, and

'contributed to the building of Oakworth House', for permission to reproduce part of

his plan of the building.

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Oakworth House

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Victorian Turkish Baths: their origin, development, and gradual decline

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The right of Malcolm Shifrin to be identified as the author of this work
has been asserted by him in accordance with the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988