Autumn 2023

Due to the Coronavirus outbreak, we had ended our open hours in 2021 and 2022, and took the opportunty to take inventory, catch up with online data entry and recording of information. 

In the process, we discovered our size limitation, and, due to public demand, we teamed up with Melksham and District Historical Association with the goal of finding larger premises in town centre. We hope to soon have positive news; stay tuned!


The Well House Collection is comprised of documents, ephemera, books, photographs and audio/visual files that chronicle the history of Melksham and surrounding villages in Wiltshire, England.

Acquisitions are privately funded, donated and loaned to be freely seen and used for study by members of the public.

The collection is housed at Well House Manor, in a private residence. Documents, maps, books and transcribed censuses can be freely downloaded by clicking the links on the right sidebar. These files will be a treasured source of information for you researching your family roots, your house history, or just learning about the Melksham area in general and the remarkable people who once lived here.

Do you have items you think would be interesting to others? We accept donations and take items on temporary loan. Do you have old photographs of Melksham? We are happy to scan them for you so your treasures can be enjoyed without the originals becoming damaged. With our knowledge of Photoshop, we might also be able to help repair and supply you with a revised digital file.

The Well House Collection is passionate about Melksham history, and if you are too, and enjoy puzzles, forensics, research and learning, you might want to consider volunteering to help!

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Including daily updates of "On this day ..." An interesting collection of local births, deaths and newspaper headlines of the day.

Current projects

Updated Monday, 6 November 2023

  • A massive revamp of the list of Those Who Served has been uploaded in time for Remembrance Day, November 2023; will never be complete, but this will be constantly updated as more is known. This is something I've been working on for more than 7 years.
  • 1921 ENGLAND CENSUS: Now complete, but will not be uploaded due to copyright constraints. Get in touch if I can help you find your Melksham family in this census.
  • RESEARCH: Adding to the database has been ongoing and we're now past 48,0000 local names. Because of the addresses and occupations given in the 1921 census, your relative has now a more complete story.
  • 1841–1911 CENSUSES: Because of constant updates, the current downloads on this site are not up to date. Until I have all these revisions updated and posted, please do email me for a current copy.
  • 1939 HEALTH REGISTER: This has now been uploaded (as of 24 May 2023). Because of Data Protection rules, you will note many of these names have been redacted. This is because they were born after 1918. They can only be revealed following proof of their death -- a certificate or by a close family member. If you know a Melksham resident is not on this register, but has died, please send details -
  • LECTURE: I've really enjoyed giving a talk on "The Melksham Murderer"; I hope you were able to be there.
  • EMAIL ADDRESS CHANGE: I am moving away from the wellho email address that I have had for more than 25 years. With that kicking around for so long I have picked up so much spam that emails are difficult to sort through and delays of emails coming down through the wires have caused numerous problems. Plus, I was no longer able to send emails to anyone with a gmail account (they bounced).

    — Lisa Ellis