A few times this year I’ve joined the throng of people and dogs wandering the Frome Independent Market. Taking up practically the whole centre of town, the market covers a really great range of products from independents, including second-hand goods, art, fashion, food and drink.
The first time we went was on a beautiful Spring day and it felt like a little adventure as we wandered Frome town centre looking at stalls – they seemed to be everywhere! We started in the ‘flea market’ area and browsed vintage fashion, books and homewares. Thankfully, the prices ranged from £1 per piece jumble sale style to carefully curated vintage all priced separately. I think it’s nice to have something for everyone. I picked up a really lovely silver spoon and did some wishful thinking about a few other items.
When we go, we usually skip breakfast. So by the time we’ve looked around the ‘flea market’ area, we’re well and truly ready for food. Thankfully the next section of the market was the ‘ready to eat’ food. There was a brilliant selection to choose from, including American BBQ, Italian, salt beef, Thai, Indian, Japanese, pies, Persian, hog roast and more. It made for some serious internal arguments because I hate making a decision when there is so much choice. After passing the Thai stand, however, I knew what I wanted – it smelled just as I thought it should and I could see the Pad Thai being made right there in front of me. Despite the noodles being a little chewy, the flavour was awesome and the rest of the ingredients were well-cooked.
I should also mention that while we waited in line, we may have bought some divine cannoli from the stall next door. They were perfect; crispy where they should have been and the fillings were creamy and light (despite being so so naughty).
After ‘re-fueling’, we continued on to the high street. Here’s where you’ll find green and white striped farmers’ market tents lining the street, separated by that throng of people and dogs I mentioned earlier. We perused handmade homewares and fashion and stared longingly at locally made bread, cakes, pies, dips, beers, ciders and wines, as well as local produce like meat, vegetables, dairy and oils, knowing we couldn’t very well buy one of everything. I’m a huge fan of Portuguese tarts, so the local purveyor was one of our stops. Probably one of the best I’ve had – a perfectly crispy, light shell with a just-wobbly custard, I can definitely recommend them.
From there, it was up a narrow cobbled street with small independent makers displaying their wares on small tables. Beautiful art, cupcakes and beauty products were just a few of things you could pick up. At the top it wasn’t obvious where to go and going back down the street we just came up seemed a little crazy considering the number of people, but we took a small street and it turns out there were even more stalls there! See, adventure!
At the bottom we went back to the cobbled street to revisit The Bakemonger to buy some of their stunning and colourful edible art. As I said to them, I hate buying such beautiful things knowing I’m going to destroy them (by eating them). Later in the day with a cup of tea, I demolished the citrus tart I bought, which had the thinnest and buttery tart shell. So good.
Frome Independent Market – Pin for later!
I can honestly say I haven’t enjoyed a market as much as I enjoyed this one in a really long time. I really did feel like I was on an adventure, even though at the beginning I was slightly overwhelmed by the sheer size and choice. I’m really looking forward to going back to find more exciting things that I probably missed this time around.
When: First Sunday of every month,
For more UK destinations, take a look at our other blog posts for inspiration.