Old Reading Room

Frome, Somerset
Bed & Breakfast

Relaxing B&B with views of woodland and fields, a cottage garden and friendly poodle. On a quiet lane, a stroll from the middle of Mells


2 rooms


Rooms sleep 2


Mells is a treasure with its medieval centre and liberal sprinkling of charming cottages. You’ll find Vicky and John’s attractive house up a lane in the quiet wooded valley on the edge of the village.It’s a home with a friendly feel and entertaining hosts. Sleep well in bedrooms in the eaves, listen to the sound of owls at night and birdsong in the morning and come down for a generous breakfast in the kitchen – homemade bread, garden produce and eggs from happy hens delivered by a friend on a pony. Sit out in the sunny cottage garden, head off on walks from the door.  A 10-minute stroll through the village takes you back centuries – thatched houses, a beautiful church (famous for its Munnings equine statue and the graves of Ronnie Knox and Siegfried Sassoon), a tithe barn – and a particularly welcoming, highly recommended coaching inn, The Talbot.

Old Reading Room - Gallery

We think you'll love

  • Sitting at the kitchen table eating Vicky's legendary breakfast
  • Strolling down to The Talbot Inn for dinner
  • The warm welcome from Vicky, John and Pompom the poodle
Old Reading Room - Gallery

Home truths

  • One bedroom has a private bathroom next door (the other is en suite)
  • Bathrooms have traditional roll-top baths and shower attachments


  • Swimming pool
  • Hot tub
  • Garden
  • Open fire / woodburner
  • Breakfast included
  • Breakfast available
  • Meals available
  • Oven
  • Parking on premises
  • Free parking nearby
  • WiFi
  • Spa
  • Central heating
  • Limited mobility
  • Wheelchair access
  • Mobile reception
  • Hob
  • Bar
  • Barbecue
  • Licensed premises
  • Vegetarian meals
  • Paid parking nearby
  • Accessible by public transport
  • Air conditioning
  • Relaxation areas
  • Washing machine
  • Tennis court
  • Microwave oven
  • No smoking
  • Credit cards
  • Working farm
  • Owner has pets
  • Dishwasher
  • Pets welcome

Family friendly

  • Baby monitor
  • Books and toys
  • Children welcome
  • Babies welcome
  • Stair gates
  • High chair
  • Cot available


  • Pub/bar within 3 miles
  • Restaurant within 3 miles
  • Shop within 3 miles


  • Bikes available
  • Food courses
  • Kayaking
  • Other courses
  • Sailing
  • Surfing
  • Wild swimming

& pricing

Booking information

Check in
Check out
By 11am
No smoking
Smoking not permitted anywhere in the property.
Owner has pets
Animals living on the property
Pubs/restaurants 5-minute walk.


Nightly price
from £95
Singles £95.
2 Doubles
From £95


A lovely part of the world -enchanting village, beautiful and comfortable house and charming hosts who served a delicious breakfast with far ranging conversations which left us feeling ' alive and energised ' and very much wanting to stay longer. Thank you so much. Sarah and Julian

Sarah, Sussex

Booked the Reading Room last minute for 2 nights over new year and very pleased we did; the house is in a quiet lane in the pretty village of Mells, and is lovely, exactly as described. Our room was charming, spotless and comfortable with King size double, with bathroom next door, big fluffy towels and robes. John and Vicky are easy, friendly and helpful, giving tips and suggestions of where to go over delicious relaxing breakfasts. There's plenty to do nearby, including the Talbott Inn with delicious food, relaxed and excellent service. Nearby is Frome, quirky, great for coffee and browsing.

Melanie, London

This was our second visit to Old Reading Rooms, Mells. Vicky and John are delightful hosts who made us extremely welcome. Beautiful house, thoughtful touches throughout. Slept really well and enjoyed a scrumptious breakfast. Steve is very fussy about his scrambled eggs and is still raving about vicky’s! Highly recommended.

Caroline, London

We had the pleasure of staying here for one night on 6th October. We booked both rooms which suited us perfectly. The house is stunning and the rooms and bathrooms beautifully appointed. We had a wonderful breakfast the following morning and a lovely chat with our delightful hosts. If we are ever in this stunning area again we shall certainly return.

Jennie, Haywards heath

Kind & helpful hosts. Nothing too much trouble. Comfortable & spotless bedroom & bathroom. Exquisite house. Best breakfasts in Somerset (at least). Easy stroll up the hill to the Talbot. Wonderful in every respect.

Tim, London

Such a tranquil home with lovely hosts. A definite return needed

Hugh, Chichester

A very warm welcome was had from John and Vicky to their beautiful, lovingly furnished and atmospheric home. It is set in a forested area a short walk from the Talbot Inn, which we sampled as well! Breakfast was a range of fresh produce, very tasty. We were very well looked after by John and Vicky and had a lovely weekend and can recommend the Old Reading Room to you.

Mary, London

John and Vicky gave us a very warm welcome their home. They went the extra mile to please us.The room was faultless and a good nights sleep was had. It's only a small B+B so you get that extra special touch. We would well recommend this a place stay and well worth the few extra penny's.

Genette, Camborne

A warm welcome was had from John and Vicky. It is a comfortable, peaceful B&B in a picturesque village - we had a relaxing weekend and would certainly recommend it.

Katherine, Bristol

We had a very pleasurable stay at the Old Reading Room. Hosts were delightful and helpful Bed super comfortable and room had everything you would need, didn't miss having a shower as the roll top bath ( and bubble bath) were a luxury to have time to have a bath Breakfast very good I lovely setting a a short walk from a superb pub - The Talbot, book in advance A great base for exploring the area Our friends who came as well were also very impressed Would highly recommend this B and B ( and I am fussy! )

Sharon, West chiltington

A warm welcome by John and Vicky to their lovely house The Old Reading Room, both house and owners full of character and warmth. Our room was spacious and the bed extremely comfortable with a window to the charming garden. Very nice breakfast cooked in the country kitchen and coffee/tea making facilities in the room. Ideally situated to visit Frome Market, Iford Manor and the Piet Ouldof garden at Hauser & Wirth and only a few minutes walk from the fabulous Talbot Inn. Only drawback was that our bathroom, although private, was not en-suite.

Marianne, Storrington

From the moment we arrived, a wonderful and warm welcome from Vicky and John. The house and garden are lovely and only a short walk from the centre of the delightful village of Mells. Breakfast was a joy too. Can’t recommend the Old Reading Room highly enough.

John, Guildford

Time spent at The Old Reading Rooms is an absolute treat from beginning to end. Whilst Mells and it’s surroundings (including stellar local pub 'The Talbot') are all pretty peaches it was the innkeepers we came back to see. Vicky, John and Pom (best dog ever) are the most delightful, generous hosts and marvellous company. The building itself has all the feels of a warm and cozy cottage with a comfy bed and lovely roll top bath and all incredibly clean. The breakfast (local sausages a dream) is as beautiful as the morning spent chatting around the breakfast table with what feels like old pals.

Sarah, Liverpool/london

A glorious stay! Comfy bed, superb surroundings and a generous, kind and caring host who made us feel incredibly welcome. The Talbot pub is just moments away and Babington a short drive - highly recommend!

Jules, London

It is probably hard to find a B&B with the perfect balance of amazing food, comfortable rooms, idyllic surroundings and very welcoming hosts. They were very accommodating throughout the trip (with our 15 month old going through a particularly challenging tantrum phase) and also when we fell ill and may have needed to reschedule. John and Vicky were perfectly understanding and very gracious. We had long, lazy breakfasts with them full of spirited conversations and amazing food. Vicky’s breakfast is truly the stuff of legends! We are definitely going back!

Amrutha, London

This was our second visit to stay at 'The Old Reading Room' and it was such a pleasure; a wonderful welcome, friendly and very kind people. A home rom home. We stayed four nights and ate delicious breakfasts and slept in a comfortable bed in a cosy room with en suite bathroom. We had a most enjoyable break and plan to return soon.

Elizabeth, Winchester

Vicky & John are truly wonderful hosts. This was our 2nd time at The Old Reading Room & it was like being with family! Their home is simply magical, in a divine spot, secluded & yet mins away from the picturesque Mells. The bedrooms are spotlessly clean. The duvet and beds were like sleeping on clouds! The breakfast - only fit for a king & queen. Honestly can't wait to visit again soon. Thank you both for a magical stay.

Sarah, London

A warm warm welcome, (with help and assistance in advance on restaurants). A beautiful home, shared in a perfect balance of guest and host. Immaculately clean, lovingly decorated and furnished and a pleasure to stay in. We stayed for two nights and without a doubt I'd rate it as amongst the finest we've chosen. And breakfast was sumptuous, with good ingredients and well cooked. With our mental batteries recharged from this superb break, we returned home smiling and happy to have stayed. Thank you.

Matt, Aylesbury

We stayed over Easter and had a lovely time. The village of Mells is very pretty and has a great pub (The Talbot). The B&B was a good base in which to explore the area. John and Vicky were wonderful hosts, really welcoming and relaxed. We took our 4 year old with us and they were great with him, even giving him an Easter egg. The breakfast was delicious and Vicky made a huge effort to ensure we had everything we needed. The house is lovely and our room in the attic was homely, comfortable and clean. It felt pretty private because you have the top floor to yourself. We'd recommend a stay :)


Excellent bedroom and delicious breakfast. Our hosts were charming and friendly, driving us to a local restaurant and even offering us an aperitif. I wouldn't hesitate recommending them.


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The neighbourhood

Mells is a delightful medieval Somerset village. There’s a community-owned shop, post office and café; the walled garden café serving outdoor snacks and drinks from April to October; and the popular Talbot Inn (10-minute walk). Frome is a 10-minute drive – a thriving town with galleries, bars, good restaurants, independent shops and an excellent market on the first Sunday of the month. Babington House (five minutes) has it all: restaurant, bars, spa, events, wedding venue, gardens and more. Longleat or Wells can be reached in 25 minutes, Bath 30. And don’t forget Bruton for Hauser and Wirth art gallery and restaurant, and The Chapel with its huge bread oven (20 minutes).

Local points of interest from Vicky & John Macdonald

  • Stunning medieval Mells. Selwood Street, The famous Talbot Inn, St Andrew's Church, and our lovely friendly community-owned shop, PO and Café.
  • Babington House 5 minutes drive (we'll drop you there for weddings). Walks from 1 to 4 hours - detailed written guides.
  • 20-30 minutes drive to Wells (amazing Cathedral and interesting medieval town),Roman and Georgian UNESCO-site Bath (all amazing!), Glastonbury (The famous Tor and the home of the music Festival, Bradford and Longleat, Bruton (Hauser and Wirth),
  • Close to the Sustrans bike route (and tunnel) to Bath. Great Houses and Gardens to visit - Stourhead (where Chippendale learnt his craft), Montacute House (used for Wolf Hall), Longleat (wonderful house, events and Safari Park)
  • 10 minute drive to Frome - the home of vintage clothing, a monthly super-market (town filled with artisan stalls)
  • And we don't insist on a minimum stay


Vicky & John Macdonald

After spending most of their adult lives in London and abroad, John and Vicky came across their house (and Mells) by pure chance and have been settled here happily for years. With children flown the nest they started B&B in 2013 – initially prompted by the number of visiting wedding guests. They enjoy getting to know their guests and helping them make the most of their visit to this area.