The Great Fire of Cheap Street

The Great Fire of Cheap Street 150 150 Frome Heritage Museum

From 9 August 2023

This display marks the centenary of the severe fire that broke out and threatened to destroy Cheap Street in August 1923.

Starting at Bailey’s, a draper’s shop occupying 9 and 10 Cheap Street, the blaze also affected number 8 next door and number 17 opposite.

The fire destroyed the premises now occupied by Hunting Raven Bookshop and Coiffure. There are still signs of the fire on adjacent buildings and on scorched internal roof timbers.

All the buildings in the affected row, as well as in nearby King Street, are timber-framed. It was only thanks to the efforts of the Frome Volunteer Fire Brigade, under the command of Capt. John Hiskett, and several quick-thinking members of the public, that serious damage, if not complete destruction, was averted.

The display includes a series of press cuttings, letters and photographs about the fire from 1923, together with images showing Cheap Street in the years before and afterwards, illustrating the area’s long history and recovery. 

Although entry to the museum is free, donations are welcomed.