Castleman

Blandford Forum, Dorset

If you’re in search of ‘a comfortable and homely experience’, look no further than Barbara Garnsworthy’s former dower house in an ‘unspoilt’ estate village within the former royal hunting ground of Cranborne Chase. More

Good Hotel Guide Review

If you’re in search of ‘a comfortable and homely experience’, look no further than Barbara Garnsworthy’s former dower house in an ‘unspoilt’ estate village within the former royal hunting ground of Cranborne Chase. Trendy it is not, but it ‘captures an age of country house hospitality’ and ‘pampers its clients’. The building incorporates a 17th-century farmhouse, extended in the 1800s, with two-storey, Tudor-style canted bays. Drawing rooms have Regency plasterwork and a Jacobean fireplace from a cannibalised house in London. An impressive 18th-century staircase leads up to large bedrooms in a variety of styles, furnished with antiques, perhaps a four-poster. All have a power shower; three have a roll-top bath. A family room has bunks for the children. Richard Morris and Barbara Garnsworthy cook a daily-changing menu using local, home-grown and foraged produce, fruits from orchard and hedgerow, wild garlic, game from surrounding estates. Maybe peppered fillet steak; wild halibut fillet, samphire, tarragon, chilli and lemon butter; venison and mushroom pie. At breakfast there is freshly squeezed orange juice, Loch Fyne kippers, eggs any which way, home-baked bread. (B and JH)

Hotel details

Address

Chettle
Blandford Forum
Dorset
DT11 8DB
England

Telephone

01258 830096

Bedrooms

8. 1 family room.

Open

Mar 5–end Jan, except 25/26, 31 Dec, restaurant closed midday except Sun.

Facilities

2 drawing rooms, bar, restaurant, free Wi-Fi, in-room TV (Freeview), 2-acre grounds (stables for visiting horses), riding, fishing, shooting, cycling nearby, public rooms wheelchair accessible.

Background music

none.

Children

all ages welcomed.

Dogs

only guide dogs.

Credit cards

MC, Visa.

Prices

per room B&B single £85, double £110–£125, D,B&B double (midweek only) £140–£160. À la carte £36, midweek supper from £16.