The location . . .
Amongst the cinder toffee coloured cottages and neat little thatched roofs in the sleepy, Somerset village of Hinton St George you can find The Lord Poulett Arms, a characterful old pub which has been welcoming passing travellers through its doors since 1680.
The lowdown . . .
Owned by successful trio Dan Brod, Charlie Luxton and Matt Greenlees, the team behind the award-winning sister establishments The Beckford Arms and The Talbot Inn (of which you can read my previous posts here and here) they took the helm at The Lord Poulett Arms in Summer 2018 and have been putting their stamp on it ever since.
The interiors . . .
Olde worlde with just the right amount of modern day improvements, crooked candles, bare brickwork, open fireplaces, mismatched wooden tables and chairs, vintage rugs, and cosy lamps create a homely feel.
The rooms . . .
There are five bedrooms in total, all with at least king sized beds, snuggly goose down duvets and Welsh wool blankets to keep the Winter chills at bay. Rates start at £85 per room including breakfast.
We stayed in room 5 at the back of the building with its own entrance off the garden.
A huge great room with a sumptuous super king size bed. Styled with simple yet tasteful design details, the marshmallow pink slipper bath was an indulgent in room addition to the ensuite shower room adjacent.
Our window looked out across the rooftops of the village, smoke gently puffing out from chimney pots, a cat taking an afternoon nap on an old stone wall. Ultimate peace and quiet.
The village itself is picture perfect and consists of very little. With a small population of just 450 you can find a church, a school, a tea room, the old priory, some very stunning homes and a village shop. The shop went up for sale in 2009 due to the owners wishing to retire. No buyers came forward, so the village, as a community purchased it together.
Miles of unspoilt English countryside surrounds the village in the form of farmland, orchards and woodland.
You can take a 45 minute loop walk from the pub to see a famous ancient oak tree dating from the 14th century, thought to have the widest spread of any in England. Lovingly referred to as the bouncing tree by some of the locals whose many generations have played on the bouncing boughs, you can’t really appreciate its immense size until you get right up close.
The food . . .
The Lord Poulett Arms prides itself on being a foodie pub with pretty much everything being made, cured or smoked in house and every dish we sampled was a joy. At dinner we scoffed caesar salad and bubble and squeak to start followed by mains of comforting Coq au vin and macaroni cheese made with local cheddar matured in the nearby caves at Wookey Hole.
At breakfast time both mornings we were well and truly spoiled. Appearing to be the only guests to have stayed the night at this quieter time of year, we were waited on hand and foot.
A seat by the gently smouldering fireplace, freshly baked croissants still warm from the oven, the most delicious coffee, and a table laid out with all kinds of offerings including ingredients to knock up a DIY Bloody Mary, morning papers and a range of painkillers should you have propped up the bar for too long the night before (nice touch).
I particularly loved the character of the dining area with the grandfather clock standing tall in the corner, antique candlestick holders and old fashioned silverware which reminded me of the scene in Beauty and The Beast when they all come to life and parade around to ‘be our guest’
Yay to . . .
Delightful dishes from the kitchen and thoughtful gestures like the brown paper bag containing home made shortbread left in our room, a great selection of interior and design mags and a fresh milk delivery left on our doorstep first thing for that early morning cuppa.
Nay to . . .
The stone floor in our bathroom was freezing cold. Slippers would have been a welcome touch, especially for a dash to the loo in the night to save hunting around for socks.
Worth knowing . . .
A stay at this village pub gives you the very best of both country and coast as the seaside town of Lyme Regis is just a 3o minute drive away.
Bramley natural bath and body products, creation of Chloe Luxton (previously of Green & Spring and Cowshed) are supplied in all of the rooms and are available to purchase from reception.
Getting there . . .
From London by car (137 miles – 2 hours 15 minutes with no traffic): Take the M4, M3 and A303 to Harp Road in Somerset. Continue on Hard Road. Take Holloway and Lopen Road to Hinton St George High Street, the Lord Poulett Arms will be on your right.
From London by train it’s around 2 hours from Waterloo, Crewkerne train station is 5 minutes drive away.
Local taxi’s - Hinton Private Hire 07554477617, Woods Taxi 07729563033, IQ Talks 01460210007/ 07736642738, Crewkerne Cabs 0146075088, Taxi Alliance 0146075089
THE LORD POULETT ARMS, HIGH STREET, HINTON ST GEORGE, TA17 8SE
Nearby and worth a visit if you have the time . . .
The Feed Station A lovely cafe housed in a charming, historic grade II listed building that was formerly used as a Sunday school and dining hall. Open for breakfast, lunch, tea or tipple, you can tell this place is a real labour of love with a friendly team and quirky design details.
Cat Head Inn - Less than a 10 minute drive from the Lord Poulett Arms in the neighbouring village of Chiselborough, we chose to book dinner here on our second night for a change of scenery. A lovely, welcoming country pub with great food and snug surroundings.