Hotel and training centre, Melksham, Wiltshire
High quality accommodation for course delegates, business travellers and the leisure visitor too.

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Well House Manor - the history of the hotel

Well House Manor was built in 1906, as a home, on a 3/4 acre plot on what was then the outskirts of a much smaller Melksham. Originally, the staircase lead up from the right of the entrance door, and we believe that the ceiling was much higher, there being no room above.

Around 1920, the staircase was moved, the tiled floor in the entrance hallway was installed, and the extra room put in above. And over the years, various extensions were added.

For about 30 years in the middle / late 20th Century, Well House Manor functioned as a Vet's - writing in 2010, we still get people coming in who remember it as that. The small wooden building beside the staff entrance is still known as "The Waiting Room", and the big shed out the back is "The Tack Room". The deeds on the property, to this day, have a covenant that forbids the owner to run a veterinary business from the property; we believe that's because the vet sold to move elsewhere within the town and wanted to prevent a competitive operation being set up in his old place.

After the vet's, Mr and Mrs Bailey operated a greetings card business from the property; over time, they separated and Mrs Bailey remained in the property. The greetings card business was replaced by a bed and breakfast that Mrs Bailey ran under the name "The Old Manor". By this time, the front of the property was protected by an eight foot high wall, with very limited vehicle space inside and a blind exit for vehicles pulling out. The high wall also gave rise to a seclusion which encouraged people who were looking for such seclusion onto the property, even if they were not resident or visiting.

Over the years, with the growth of Melksham, the property has moved from being on the edge of town to a place that's very much within the town - and the 3/4 of an acre is one of the few blocks of land around that's not been built on. Looking to move on, the owners were encouraged to sell the property to a retirement home company, who wanted to build some 23 accommodation units on the site. Plans were drawn up, planning applications made, and we understand that the officers of the planning department recommended acceptance. However, the application was rejected by councilors after pressure from the surrounding properties who were unhappy about a multistory building right up to their fences, and it became clear to the owner / retirement flat company that further applications were unlikely to succeed.

We opened a training centre elsewhere in Melksham in 2000, and very quickly built a business for which guests stayed at various places and came to us each day. "The Old Manor" was one of these, but from 2000 to 2005 it became more run down (naturally, the previous owner was not investing in long term maintenance on a property she was planning to have demolished). By 2005, the number of places for delegates to stay was dropping, and places like "The Old Manor" were no longer offering what our delegates needed - their needs had grown to require credit card payment, internet access, late check ins, desk space, many channel TVs, en suite, etc - and we faced an issue with where to recommend, and there was a danger of our courses becoming memorable for inappropriate overnight accommodation.

Well House Manor, Melksham - room 2So - in 2006 - we completed the purchase of "The Old Manor", complete with planning approval supported by our neighbors (who we kept fully informed) to run it as a hotel. From 1st June 2006 when we got vacant possession through to mid October, we undertook a major refit and refurbishment, and we opened for delegates ... with the place re-plaster, rewired, re-plumbed, and otherwise redesigned and re-engineered. All rooms are now en-suite, fitted with power savers, spacious, etc. Car parking and access issues have been resolved, and the fit-out is with materials which we expect to have a long life expectancy rather than being cheap for a short term project. We re-christened the building "Well House Manor" as a combination of the Well House name and The Old Manor.

Other business visitors to Melksham also need the sort of facilities and place to stay that our delegates are looking for, and we were soon accepting bookings for people working at Bowerhill and other offices in the town. And it turns out that we're also ideal for people visiting family in town, where the family is short of space. Guests stay with us when they're in Melksham to attend a wedding, or simply if they're touring the area.

Our main business remains training courses in open source programming languages - for which we have two fully equipped training rooms and an extensive library - but we're also providing significant accommodation and have a lot of returning regular hotel guests at Well House Manor.

As we're not a mainstream hotel, we don't appear in many of the listings - we simply don't fit the standard categories. Rooms are designed to 5 star quality (drop in and see if you like!) but we lack services such as a bar and night porter which a five star rating requires; that's not an issue as our niche clientele simply doesn't want, need or use such services and to provide them would raise the cost of a stay with us for no purpose. Try us. If we're what you need, you'll keep coming back as many do.

(written 2010-09-20, updated 2010-09-21)

Associated topics are indexed as below, or enter for individual articles
G211 - Well House Consultants - The story of our Georgian HQ and Edwardian Hotel
  [4751] Final day of training at Well House Manor - Python, Lua, Tcl and C/C++ continue at The Spa, Melksham - (2017-06-30)
  [4139] Out of doors (mostly) at Well House in Melksham - (2013-07-12)
  [3864] Guest Guide for Well House Manor and Melksham - (2012-09-18)
  [3847] The Accidental Hotelier - (2012-08-24)
  [2987] Memorial to a day in 1999 - (2010-10-06)
  [2935] 01225 707126 to 01225 344596 to 01225 899360 - Well House Fax - (2010-08-26)
  [2565] Bright day, snowy day - (2010-01-06)
  [2548] Ten years ago, we moved to Melksham Spa - (2009-12-24)
  [2350] Ten years in Melksham - looking forward to ten more. - (2009-08-11)
  [2158] On the roof of a Melksham Spa House - (2009-05-05)
  [1443] Christmas is coming very early - (2007-11-24)
  [1126] MacFormat - Me and My Mac - (2007-03-31)
  [830] Butterflies in a Wiltshire garden - (2006-08-12)
  [811] Melksham in Bloom - (2006-07-22)
  [719] Gardens, Well House Consultants HQ - (2006-05-13)
  [174] Contrast - the storm and the calm. - (2005-01-10)
  [118] History around you - (2004-11-15)

G600 - Well House Consultants - Well House Manor
  [4715] Well House Manor - Still five out of five! - (2016-10-30)
  [4101] POETS day at Well House Manor - (2013-05-24)
  [3970] Comparing four VERY different places to stay - (2013-01-11)
  [3814] Returning guests - a sign of a good product. Cream teas and hotel rooms. - (2012-07-22)
  [3800] Fancy a weekend away? Try Well House Manor in Melksham, Wiltshire - (2012-07-09)
  [3702] Digital Champions think that Well House Manor is a champion venue! - (2012-04-20)
  [3549] Well House Manor - perhaps the best hotel rooms in Melksham - (2011-12-10)
  [3405] Where do businessmen stay in Melksham? - (2011-08-25)
  [1706] The Story of Well House Manor - (2008-07-12)
  [1520] Terms and Conditions - Hotel, England - plain English - (2008-01-26)
  [1388] Well House Manor - a year on - (2007-10-12)
  [1332] Melksham Hotel - Five Star Kitchen! - (2007-09-04)
  [1211] A lot has happened in a year - (2007-05-31)
  [1072] Well House Manor in the Snow - (2007-02-09)
  [1059] Three sets of twins - (2007-01-31)
  [963] George Hotel and Well House Manor, Melksham - (2006-12-04)
  [933] Course Joining package - updated - (2006-11-20)
  [902] Brand new hotel and training centre, Melksham - (2006-10-22)
  [891] Well House Manor Hotel, Melksham, Wiltshire - (2006-10-10)
  [884] Drive time - (2006-10-02)
  [667] Well House Manor goes ahead - (2006-04-03)
  [643] If it's Sunday, it must be Bedwyn - (2006-03-12)
  [617] Easy, Free, Reliable internet access - (2006-02-22)
  [615] Looking for leading not bleeding edge - (2006-02-21)
  [598] Should we cruise around the world? - (2006-02-09)
  [594] Twice is a co-incidence and three times is a pattern - (2006-02-07)
  [582] DWIM and AWWO - (2006-01-30)
  [575] Eating for the single business traveller - (2006-01-24)
  [571] Well House Manor - (2006-01-21)
  [558] Converting between acres and hectares - (2006-01-08)
  [555] Hotel novelties - (2006-01-05)
  [550] 2006 - Making business a pleasure - (2006-01-01)
  [525] Vision AND venture - (2005-12-12)

M150 - For users of Well House Manor.
  [4613] Our best hotel customers help us ... to help them ... be our best customers. - (2016-01-04)
  [4567] Japanese and Malaysian food in Melksham - (2015-11-01)
  [4379] Well House Consultants / Well House Manor - Prices for 2015 - (2015-01-01)
  [3976] Easy pricing, quick and easy checkout - (2013-01-15)
  [3552] Melksham Training Centre and Hotel internet speed - how does it compare? - (2011-12-14)
  [3544] Looking for hotel rooms in Melksham over Christmas? We still have some availability - (2011-12-08)
  [2660] One number for Well House - 01225 708225 - (2010-03-04)
  [2590] A healthy, local breakfast in Melksham - (2010-01-19)
  [2307] Breakfast in Mexico - (2009-07-27)
  [2253] Walks in and around Melksham, Wiltshire - (2009-06-21)
  [1290] Badges, Breakfasts and Trigger - (2007-08-04)

Back to
Initial handling of phone calls and walk in visitors
Previous and next
Horse's mouth home
Forward to
Removing the new line with chop or chomp in Perl - what is the difference?
Some other Articles
Cheap Country Hotel in Melksham, Wiltshire?
Testimonials - Well House Consultants Open Source courses
An introduction to file handling in programs - buffering, standard in and out, and file handles
Removing the new line with chop or chomp in Perl - what is the difference?
Well House Manor - the history of the hotel
Initial handling of phone calls and walk in visitors
The Well House team - September 2010
A Melksham news roundup
What do these road markings mean? Could Confusion Kill?
Welcome to Countrywides new Melksham store
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This is a page archived from The Horse's Mouth at - the diary and writings of Graham Ellis. Every attempt was made to provide current information at the time the page was written, but things do move forward in our business - new software releases, price changes, new techniques. Please check back via our main site for current courses, prices, versions, etc - any mention of a price in "The Horse's Mouth" cannot be taken as an offer to supply at that price.

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