A wonderfully unpretentious country pub with stylish rooms and lodges at great rates
The Beckford Arms is many things to many people. To foodies, it's a
great restaurant and laid-back bar. To city folk, it's a perfect
weekend retreat, offering comfy rooms and countryside walks. To
locals, it's a favourite pub for a relaxing pint, and shooters,
beaters and landowners prop up the bar. Owners Dan and Charlie (who
formerly ran Babington House) are genuinely welcoming, and the
ambiance is easy.
Just 2 hours from London, the ivy-coated Beckford is set on Wiltshire's rolling Fonthill Estate, with walks leading out from its duck-egg blue front door. The country pub essentials are all in place: wooden beams, pewter mugs, local ales and log fires. But there are also potted bay trees, wrought-iron lanterns, Le Creuset sugar bowls and Bloody Marys made with homegrown horseradish. It's upmarket yet refreshingly down to earth, especially where the prices are concerned.
Above are 8 bedrooms - stylish and comfortable, though none are big. You get rolltop baths, fresh flowers, and beds are topped with Siberian goosedown; hot water bottles and tea cosies add a homely vibe. Couples love the hideaway location, and it's a good option for families, with a large garden, a play area, a family suite, baby monitors and self-catering lodges nearby. As we said, many things to many people.
Reviewed by Michael Brandon
- Well placed for exploring Wiltshire: you're 20 minutes from Longleat and Stonehenge, half an hour from Bath, and surrounded by classic English countryside for hiking, shooting, fishing and golf
- Fantastic value for money, considering the elegant rooms and little extras, including a free Bramley product for i-escape guests
- Great service and a warm welcome that puts you instantly at ease
- We loved the food, ranging from fine fare in the restaurant (pan-fried pollock with cauliflower purée) to upmarket pub grub at the bar (cider-battered fish and chips and game pies), plus delicious puddings
- Fully refurbished after a devastating fire in 2010, and to an even better standard, so everything is fresh
- This is a working pub, so a certain level of noise does make its way up to the rooms until closing time
- Some of the rooms are very small (Room 2 in particular)
- No storage / hanging space for clothes
- The lodges are not on-site, but a 5-minute walk down a country lane (no pavement) on private parkland. It is therefore subject to separate booking terms, which will be sent during the enquiry process
A country pub, a restaurant and a comforting place to stay...Conde Nast Traveller (UK)