The Black Swan

Value offers

César award in 2013

In a 'peaceful and attractive village' near Kirkby Stephen, Alan and Louise Dinnes's 'cosy pub' is popular with locals and regular visitors. 'It continues to exude warmth and friendliness,' says a returning guest who 'immediately felt at home'. The welcome is 'charming without being effusive'; 'the friendliness of the staff is reason enough to plan a return'. The bedrooms, all different, are 'big, and refreshingly underpriced'. An extra room has been added this year; those on the ground floor have been renovated. 'Ours was comfortable and convenient. An added pleasure was the view of the garden, with daily visits from a red squirrel.' It is 'fun to hear the locals chatting' in the two bars, perhaps over a pint of Black Sheep bitter. Chef Kev Hillyer's 'artisan dishes' can be taken in either bar or the dining room. 'Dinners were delicious: trio of salmon, a tasty starter; memorable lamb and beef bourguignon.' The menu 'is sufficiently varied, so I didn't need to eat the same dish over five days'. Smaller, cheaper portions are available for small appetites. Breakfasts are 'hearty'. (Sue Pethen, Trevor Lockwood, Gwyn Morgan)
  • A very busy place but they appeared to cope, and dinner was excellent. So was breakfast though I could have done without the radio.

    A.J Gillingwater, 14/06/2014

  • Maintains its warm welcome, its feeling of cosiness, and its remarkable value for money. Most of the staff have been there several years and all are efficient and friendly. My room had recently been fitted with an en-suite shower room and this made the accommodation a little cramped but was preferable to having to cross the passage to the private bathroom. The menu looks unpretentious, but everything is made on the premises and is nicely presented, delicious and substantial. Wines are reasonably priced, as is the ubiquitous and wonderful Black Sheep bitter. Breakfasts equip you for a day on the fells. If you decide to stay around all day, the village has plenty to explore or one can sit happily in the streamside garden. Unstuffy, not over-sophisticated but thoroughly dependable.

    Trevor Lockwood, 04/02/2014

  • Our second visit. We had the same comfortable room. Reception and service as good as before. Food was excellent. It was good to hear the locals chatting in the bar.

    Gwyn Morgan, 27/11/2012

  • A wonderfully situated pub/hotel in exuberant form under hands-on owners Louise and Alan Dinnes. Room comfortable, modern, warm, good-sized. Dinner, whether in bar or dining room (same menu), of a high quality, all freshly prepared. An excellent and not over-priced wine list. Draught beer selection not bad either. Staff all very kind and interested in the guests. It has a great buzz; is clearly popular with the locals. Stunning scenery for miles around. Great value for money (winter offer).

    Ian Dewey, 02/02/2012

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Local attractions

The Lake District
The largest of the English National Parks and the second largest in the United Kingdom.
Wild Brown Trout Fishing
Tuition from a local expert.
Paragliding tours over the Lake District.

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Discount Vouchers

This hotel accepts the following discount vouchers:

  • Online vouchers

    These entitle readers to a 10% discount off their normal B&B rate for a single night's stay

    Print voucher

  • Book vouchers

    This hotel accepts discount vouchers which entitle readers to a 25% discount off their normal B&B rate for a single night's stay. Each printed copy of the Guide contains six vouchers worth in total about £150. BUY THE GUIDE

    Buy the guide

Contact Details

The Black Swan

Kirkby Stephen RAVENSTONEDALE Cumbria England CA17 4NG


015396 23204

Discount Vouchers

This hotel accepts discount vouchers which entitle readers to a 10% discount off their normal B&B rate for a single night's stay

Further Information


15, 2 in ground-floor annexe, 1 suitable for disabled.


all year.


bar, lounge, 2 dining rooms, free Wi-Fi, beer garden, tennis and golf in village.

Background music

optional 'easy listening' in bar, restaurant.


all ages welcomed.


allowed in 3 ground-floor bedrooms, not in restaurant.

Credit cards

all major cards.


[2013] per room B&B £75-£125. À la carte £26.

GHG voucher offer

Buy the guide and claim 25% off B&B rates on certain dates