Despite Bath being a World Heritage Site and an outwardly prosperous city, it’s not immune from the problem of homelessness.
At our Lifeline Centre, a daily drop-in for rough sleepers in the Friends Meeting House , up to 40 adults visit most afternoons to access a hot drink, a friendly chat or to get some clean clothes or bedding.
The population in Bath and North East Somerset (BANES) is roughly 175,000. The BANES Rough Sleeper Count Nov 2016 found 25 people sleeping rough , we know there are many more. This is because many homeless people are not just living in doorways or on the streets, instead they are “sofa-surfing” at friends’ houses or staying at B&B’s and are thus not included in official counts.
Nationally homelessness in on the increase too. The latest government figures for 2016 show that the number of rough sleepers in England had risen for the sixth year in a row , up 16% on the previous year, nearly double the number since 2010. Across the country 4,134 people are sleeping outside.
Many who are rough sleeping in Bath live chaotic lifestyles, so we work closely with local agencies and organisations such as Julian House, DHI, Bath MIND, CAB and Virgin Care to ensure that individuals who use our Lifeline Centre receive the best care and support. We are also active in the Bath Homeless Partnership (a group of statutory and voluntary bodies in the city).