JUST inside the Somerset borders in the Mendip Hills, 13 miles
south of Bath and 15 miles east of Wells, lies the historic town of
It is an architecturally fascinating market town, with a
thriving arts scene, craft and vintage shops, and a wealth of
delicious local cheese to purchase.
Frome railway station is served by Bristol to Weymouth trains.
It is easily accessible by road on the A361.
What to see
Outside the east end of St John the Baptist's is the elaborate
crypt of Thomas Ken, the bishop and nonjuror who wrote "Awake, my
soul, and with the sun". Be sure not to miss the seven sculpted
scenes of the via crucis built on the slope up to the
church in the 19th century. Aficionados of stained glass will enjoy
the Burne-Jones windows from the William Morris workshop in Holy
Street markets are to be found on Wednesdays and Saturdays; and
Frome Cheese and Grain, in the former cattle market, combines local
food and craft markets with community events and evening
entertainment. The Somerset Farmers' market, which is held there on
the second Saturday of each month, has a mouth-watering selection
of cheeses, cider, and, surprisingly, water-buffalo meat; the
coffee at the on-site café is fairly traded. The Frome Agricultural
and Cheese Show is held this year on 8 September, and has a
competition for the best cheese-themed rap.
The steep, cobbled street of Catherine Hill is lined with small
independent shops that sell everything from vintage clothes and
designer jewellery to fashion and flowers. The town is well known
for its arts centres, including the Black Swan, which contains
galleries, shops, and artist-led workshops. Rook Lane, a
Nonconformist chapel built in 1707, now houses an art gallery, and
If you want to learn more of the town's heritage, then seek out
the two display rooms in Frome Museum, with its recreation of a
chemist's shop, artefacts from Fussell's Ironworks, and printing
presses from Butler & Tanner.
Where to eat and drink
Enjoy a cheese-and-cider-themed picnic by the River Frome, or,
if the weather continues to be inclement, find the Garden Café in
Stony Street for delicious organic food; it is open daily. The
Archangel is a gastro-pub that also has six bedrooms.
Longleat Safari and Adventure Park is three miles from Frome,
and provides a full day of excitement for children. The Italianate
Peto garden at Iford Manor, to the north, is in an idyllic valley,
and offers cream teas; in the summer it hosts opera in the
reconstructed medieval cloister.
Frome streets are steep, and narrow in places, and may prove
difficult for a wheelchair user.