In a beautiful pocket of rural Wiltshire, Melksham is a lovely market town situated on the banks of the Bristol Avon. It was once part of a vast royal forest; a favourite hunting ground of Tudor kings.
Melksham appears in the Domesday (Doomsday) Book and its prosperity was founded on agriculture and the woollen cloth making industry. Today the population is around 23,000 and it is the home of Cooper Tires and modern businesses based on new technology.
A beautiful historic quarter in the Town Centre features St Michael and All Angel’s Church, Canon Square and Church Walk. Nearby are the historic villages of Lacock and Castle Combe and the splendour of the Cotswolds. The friendly Town Centre is full of independent shops and plenty of cafes, pubs and restaurants, with a regular Tuesday Market. Compact and easily accessible, Melksham’s library, gym, swimming pool, tourist information centre and parks are all in easy walking distance of the centre.
Melksham has a wealth of clubs and societies for all ages and tastes. The strong and vibrant community spirit ensures a busy calendar of events, including the Scarecrow Trail at Easter, the Food and Drink Festival in May, and the summer highlights of Melksham Music Festival, Carnival, Party in the Park and Melksham Comic Convention. The popular Christmas Fayre features the highly anticipated switching on of the Melksham Christmas Lights, a spectacular display put on entirely by volunteers.
Melksham people take great pride in their town, and the effort and creativity invested in the Christmas Lights is matched by the dedication in adorning the town with fantastic flowers in summer.
There are some beautiful walks in and around Melksham, including the Riverside Walk along the Avon. The Conigre Mead Nature Reserve is a fascinating and tranquil space hidden just a few minutes’ walk along the river. Managed by a voluntary team of enthusiasts, it is home to dragonflies, butterflies and the occasional kingfisher.
The Kennet and Avon Canal also passes through Melksham, offering a great bike ride or walk to the famous Devizes Caen Hill Locks to the east and Bradford on Avon and Bath to the west.
Melksham is gaining in popularity due to its ideal location on the A350, a main gateway to the magnificent Wiltshire countryside. Several bus routes serve Melksham, including the National Express from London, and Melksham trains connect to Bristol, London and Swindon. Melksham is the ideal satellite base for visitors seeking reasonable, inexpensive accommodation and good eating-out facilities. Its position 10 miles south of junction 17 of the M4 on the A350 provides an excellent centre to explore nearby Lacock and Avebury and the attractive towns of Devizes, Bradford on Avon and the City of Bath.
With its accessible and friendly welcome, you are sure to have an enjoyable and memorable visit.