The Royal Oak

Swallowcliffe, Wiltshire

‘Rescued from dilapidation’, by locals, this ‘charming, white-painted, part-thatched’ former 18th-century tannery-turned-inn stands ‘on a quiet country lane, in a village buried in the Nadder valley’. More

Good Hotel Guide Review

‘Rescued from dilapidation’, by locals, this ‘charming, white-painted, part-thatched’ former 18th-century tannery-turned-inn stands on a quiet country lane, in a village buried in the Nadder valley. Our inspectors approached ‘through the truly beautiful parkland’ of the Fonthill Estate, on a largely single-track road, ‘ironic as James (Top Gear) May owns 50 per cent of the pub’. The greeting was ‘warm and welcoming’, though a request for payment up front felt less friendly. The bedrooms are ‘spacious, with a stylish contemporary rustic simplicity, oak furniture, a Lloyd Loom chair’. Occupying the entire top floor, Ashcombe is ‘almost a suite, with a super-king bed’. The bathroom ‘looked stunning’, but an egg-shaped bath on a plinth was for the more limber. At dinner, in a light-filled, beamed extension, a pea and wild garlic soup with garlic flower garnish was ‘up to best expectations’, while an ‘aubergine tartlet with glazed onion, romesco sauce and tempura onion’ was much enjoyed; a cheeseburger, less so. A ‘really well-cooked breakfast’ included ‘delicious granola’ and ‘the yellowest eggs ever seen’.

Hotel details

Address

Common Lane
Swallowcliffe
Wiltshire
SP3 5PA
England

Telephone

01747 870211

Bedrooms

6. 1 suitable for disabled.

Open

all year, but no accommodation 25 Dec evening.

Facilities

lift, bar, dining room, Oak Room, in-room TV (Freeview), garden with outdoor seating, public rooms wheelchair accessible, adapted toilet.

Background music

none.

Children

all ages welcomed, extra bed £15.

Dogs

‘friendly, well-behaved’ dogs allowed in 1 bedroom (£15 a night, treats, towels provided), public rooms except Oak Room.

Credit cards

Amex, MC, Visa.

Prices

B&B doubles from £100. À la carte £33.