Melksham is a small town in Wiltshire. It is not most people's idea of a tourist destination. Originally an Anglo-Saxon settlement (milk town) Melksham became one of Wiltshire's industrial towns and grew on the back of the Avon (locally pronounced as Avun) rubber factory.
Most of the interesting buildings in the area were demolished when the Avon factory expanded and in the re-development of the town centre in the 1960s, which has left Melksham a pretty bleak place.
It is by population (23,000) the 5th largest town in Wiltshire after Swindon, Salisbury, Chippenham & Trowbridge, but it has few amenities.
Melksham is situated on the main North/South A350 trunk road. It can be reached by leaving the M4 at J17 and following the A350 south for approx 10 miles (16 km).
1 Melksham station is served by 2 trains per day on the Swindon - Southampton line. The train station is commonly known as 'the bus stop' due to its small size and appearance of a bus shelter.
Melksham is served by buses from Bath, Chippenham, Trowbridge & Devizes on a regular basis.
The nearest airport to the town is 2 Bristol Airport (BRS IATA). 3 Heathrow Airport (LHR IATA) is 1 hr 30 min away.
The town centre is small enough to walk around.
- Melksham Spa. 6 Georgian houses remain from the spa that was established in 1770, fed by water from a Chalybeate spring.
- 1 St Michael's church and the old Roundhouse. 800 years old.
- 1 Leekes Department Store, Beanacre Road. The main focus of retail activity in Melksham. It offers anything that you can think of for the house & home (for a price).
- 1 The Fisheries, Union Street (located close to the main shopping street), ☏ +44 1225 703406. An excellent example of a good quality English chippy.
- The Kings Arms, Market Place. Good quality 'pub grub' although the beer is a bit pricey.
Melksham also has 3 Indian restaurants, 2 Chinese restaurants (Lee's Chinese on Beanacre Road is excellent) and countless kebab shops, etc.
- 2 Lee's Chinese, 5 Granville Rd, SN12 8AN.
Beware of drunken idiots on weekend nights as Melksham is famous for it. The town was once named in a list of the top 10 most violent places in the UK.
- 1 The Bear, 3 Bath Rd, SN12 6LL, ☏ +44 1225 792690. Su, M-Th: 8AM-midnight, F-Sa: 8AM-1AM. The town's JD Wetherspoon's pub.
- 2 The Grapes, 31 Bank St, SN12 6LE.
- 3 The Tavern, 18 Market Pl, SN12 6EX, ☏ +44 1225 709932. M-Th: 11AM-11PM, F-Sa: 11AM-2AM, Su: noon-10:30PM.
- 4 The Parsons Nose, 30 High St, SN12 6LA, ☏ +44 1225 702947. M-Th: noon-11PM, F: noon-2AM, Sa: Closed, Su: noon-11PM.
- 5 The Foresters Arms, 87 Sandridge Rd, SN12 7BN, ☏ +44 1225 703878.
- 1 The King Arms, Market place.
- 2 Beechfield House Hotel, Beanacre SN12 7PU, ☏ +44 1225 703700, fax: +44 1225 790118, firstname.lastname@example.org. Accommodation comprises 24 bedrooms, which can accommodate families of up to five. Has a fine restaurant offering a private menu, with a selection of private dining rooms catering for special occasions. There are four fully-equipped meeting rooms, The Garden room, The Music room, The Library and The Card room, all of which can be set up as 'boardrooms' or as presentation 'theatres', the largest of which can accommodate up to 80 people standing or 70 dining. A beauty treatment room, outdoor heated swimming pool and its own small arboretum of rare trees in the grounds. Free Wifi available throughout the hotel. Has excellent if rather expensive rooms and a fantastic restaurant. It has the added benefit of being on the main A350 trunk road out of the town for a quick getaway! Rooms from £125.
There are also several B & Bs located in the town.
- Nearby you have the National Trust Village of Lacock.
Tourists who find themselves in Melksham by mistake would do well to head for nearby Lacock, Bradford on Avon or Devizes.