Charlotte Blackburn looks at how shrinking bathrooms are making shower baths invaluable
Homes in the UK are getting smaller and with RIBA discovering that the UK has the smallest new homes in Europe, working within a confined space in the bathroom has never been more important. Whilst bathrooms are getting smaller, families are still unwilling to give up their bath. The option of a shower bath therefore offers consumers the flexibility to utilise space in a small bathroom. It is particularly useful for young families, allowing children to be bathed, whereas adults can use the shower.
To the untrained eye rectangular shower baths look like traditional baths, but they actually have several safety features. These include flat bottoms, steep walls, non-slip surfaces and being lower in height. Retailers need to be aware that the consumer may not realise how many safety features and advantages a shower bath offers over a traditional bath.
But what style of shower bath do consumers want? Traditionally P-shaped baths have been the most popular but L shaped baths are becoming more popular.Regardless of the form of the bath, the screen is an important feature. It must be large enough to protect the rest of the bathroom from water, form a tight seal and also not take up too much room.
While wetrooms and enclosures may take a bite out of the shower bath market, demand will not disappear, and industry experts believe new developments of both water saving and easy access options will see the category grow over the next few years.