Frome voted the most mispronounced town in the UK

Francesca Specter
·Yahoo Style UK deputy editor
Frome, Somerset, England, UK - September, 11 2014: Image of historic medieval shops and houses lining the pedestrianised, flagstone shopping street of Cheap Street, located in the historic market town of Frome, Somerset, England.  This thoroughfare is particularly unusual, as it has a narrow stream / rill running through the centre of the street, fed by a nearby natural street at the top of the hill.
Frome in Somerset is the most commonly mispronounced town in the UK. [Photo: Getty]

Frome, a town and civil parish in eastern Somerset, is the most mispronounced town in the whole of the United Kingdom.

While the correct pronounciation is “Froom”, apparently people often get it wrong – so much so that is has topped language learning app Babbel’s list of the top 10 most mispronounced places in the UK.

The name was most commonly mispronounced as rhyming with "home", Paul Wynne, of Frome Town Council, told the BBC.

He said: "We're not a town that toes the line. Now it seems that even the way we pronounce Frome is different too. Ours is the right way, obviously. We always know who is new to the town by the way they pronounce Frome.”

READ MORE: 'Single use' announced as the word of the year 2018

British English is “famous for some of the most confusing pronunciations on earth”, according to those compiling Babbel’s list – and Frome is not by any stretch the only cause of confusion.

The UK’s 10 most commonly mispronounced towns

  1. Frome, Somerset, England

  2. Ballachulish, Highland, Scotland

  3. Godmanchester, Cambridgeshire, England

  4. Omagh, County Tyrone, Northern Ireland

  5. Woolfardisworthy, Devon, England

  6. Beaulieu, Hampshire, England

  7. Bicester, Oxfordshire, England

  8. Ynysybwl, Cwm Clydach, RCT, Wales

  9. Rampisham, Dorset, England

  10. Quernmore, Lancashire, England

The second most mispronounced is Scottish town Ballachulish, pronounced “Ball-a-hoolish”, while Bicester – pronounced “Biss-ter” – in Oxfordshire, famous for its outlet shopping centre, is another popular source of confusion.

Woolfardisworthy in Devon, pronounced simply “Woolzery”, comes in fifth place, although to add to the confusion it is one of two villages in Devon with the same name - they are within an hour’s drive of one another.

Causeway street. Bicester Village, Oxfordshire, England, UK
Bicester Village, Oxfordshire, is also commonly mispronounced. [Photo: Getty]

The larger of the two, Woolfardisworthy West, has shortened the spelling of its name to “Woolsery” to make it easier to pronounce, while the smaller is still spelt Woolfardisworthy but pronounced exactly the same as its larger counterpart.

READ MORE: Dictionary adds 'they' as nonbinary pronoun for the first time

Unsurprisingly, Welsh town Ynysybwl – pronounced “An-is-abull” – also made it into the top 10.

In May this year, Lancing, a village in West Sussex, was mocked by its own residents for planning a tourist-friendly rebrand, which entailed adding “on sea” to its name.