A History of Black Swan Arts Frome

History of Black Swan Arts

It will surprise no-one that the Black Swan was once a public hostelry.

After the second world war, it fell into disrepair. Long term residents of Frome remember the courtyard at its rear being used to buy and sell chickens and other small animals on market days. In the early Eighties, a small group led by David Short raised funds to repair the building and open it as an Arts Centre. The motivation for this project went beyond just creating an Arts Centre in the heart of a historic and creative market town. At a time of high unemployment, it was also an opportunity to create employment for young people in the restoration and by providing affordable studios where emerging artists could work and sell to the public.

The Black Swan Arts Centre opened to the public in 1986. In 2016, we celebrated the 30th Anniversary of Black Swan Arts.