Frome in 50 Buildings
Series: In 50 Buildings
- Alastair MacLeay
15th February 2024
Situated at the eastern end of the Mendip Hills, the Somerset market town of Frome has a wealth of history much of which lies waiting to be discovered among the architectural gems that line its scenic streets. Founded by the monk St Aldhelm in approximately 685 AD, the town sits on a hillside with many springs where Aldhelm built a minster church which became the site of St John’s Church.
Frome had three mills and a fair reported in the Domesday Book, but it grew with the development of the cloth trade. By the end of the seventeenth century, a new town was built for the cloth workers on the woad fields and the population increased rapidly until the end of the Napoleonic Wars. Major industries were developed during the nineteenth century which sustained the economy of the town: a brass foundry, supplies to the gas industry and printing.
Frome has the most listed buildings of any town in Somerset and is particularly renowned for the quality of its Non-conformist chapels and eighteenth-century vernacular buildings. In this book, author Alastair MacLeay, highlights 50 of the town’s finest buildings and structures from the fifteenth through to the twentieth centuries. ‘Frome in 50 Buildings’ presents a fascinating look at the buildings and architectural styles from across the ages to reveal the history, economic and civil development of the town. The stories behind the inns, chapels, industrial buildings, schools and houses offer an intriguing and remarkable insight into the town’s heritage.