Frome is known as the original Somerset Market Town, and with a team of 15 dedicated volunteer walk leaders, it’s no surprise that Frome is among the most successful Somerset Health Walks offering every single level of walk every week. We at the Somerset Activity & Sports Partnership (SASP) truly value the importance of the role that our local community plays in Somerset, fostering a sense of belonging and unity - and Frome and its surrounding villages, such as Mells reflects this.

Along with our health walks programme, Frome offers a variety of provision for children and young people, and SASP, along with a vast range of partners and organisations, are dedicated to improving this support. SASP have prioritised initiatives in Frome including Talk Activities, a pupil voice project where the aim is to understand what children and young people want, understand what's going on in their local areas, barriers they are facing and then future steps to overcome these; and Development Days, whereby multiple schools can grow connections/ improve relationships with community clubs and other schools and also be offered skills in leadership.

The countywide Happy Healthy Holidays programme, a government funded initiative through Somerset Council, and managed by SASP, to provide children on benefits related free school meals, enriching free holidays activities that includes food and nutritional information, runs multiple successful programmes in Frome.


This walk, of about 2.7 miles, visits the village of Mells, with its historical sites, as well as taking a look into one of the largest limestone quarries in Europe.

1. The walk starts from the Village car park at the Recreation ground in Longfield, Mells. Head into the Recreation ground and walk around the edge of the fields, keeping past the Pavilion, then turn right along the hedge, staying in the field to the far-left corner where a gap will lead you past a stone stile on your right to a small parking area. Turn down a path to your right and follow this path downhill. At the bottom turn right onto a small lane to pass the Old Reading Room on your right - this was originally an inn, then a magistrate’s court!

2. Keep walking along the lane past houses, then bear left onto a bigger road. Take the bend left until you reach the pavement and continue almost to a left-hand junction ahead. Cross the road and take the wooded path by a footpath sign. Follow the path until it reaches a road on Mells Common. Walk up the road with the school on your right, straight across the crossroads, and continue for about 300 metres where the road bends to the right. Pass through the gateway marked ‘Whatley Quarry’. Climb the steps to your left to the quarry viewpoint – make sure you give yourself time here to take in the views!

3. Retrace your steps across the crossroads and take a small unmarked path on your right just after a ‘school’ sign, this path leads you to two gates. Taking the left-hand gate go downhill until you reach a road and turn left and take the road downhill, bearing slightly right. Cross the main road, signed ‘Mells’. Shortly bear left onto a smaller lane signposted ’Brook Cottage’. At the bottom of the hill, go left over a footbridge over the brook and turn right at the road ahead. Follow the road for about 300 metres to a junction. Facing you is a small shelter designed by Edwin Lutyens as a memorial to Mark, the son of Lady Horner from Mells Manor, who died of scarlet fever as a boy. At the junction, turn left, then left again, passing Mells Village Shop and Café on your right.

4. This road will continue to the centre of the village, passing the War Memorial, (also designed by Lutyens), the Tithe Barn and Walled Garden and turning right just before The Talbot Inn towards the church. Siegfried Sassoon, the war poet is buried in the churchyard, and inside the church is a memorial sculpture of a horse by Lutyens and Alfred Munnings, usually known as an equestrian painter. Walk to the left of the church to join the alley of yews behind. Turn left out of the churchyard into open fields behind Mells Manor, home of the Horner family since the sixteenth century. Climb the stile and go through the gate immediately on your left.

5. Follow the path across the small field with Mells Manor on your left, to another gate, and turn right onto the road, passing the Lutyens-designed bus stop. This will bring you back to your start point.

Compass points

· 1 stile on the route. This can be avoided by going back to the main road after visiting the Church.

· Visit the Mells Village Cafe on your route for refreshments and toilets

· Mells is a village of much historical interest and guidebooks and leaflets are available in the Village shop

· Try to avoid blasting times for your visit to the quarry (Usually Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, around mid-day)