Yalbury Cottage

Lower Bockhampton, Dorset

Ariane and Jamie Jones preside over a much-admired hotel and restaurant in this 300-year-old thatched cottage once home to a local shepherd (Gabriel Oak, we like to think, for this is the very heart of Thomas Hardy country). More

Good Hotel Guide Review

Ariane and Jamie Jones preside over a much-admired hotel and restaurant in this 300-year-old thatched cottage, once home to a local shepherd (Gabriel Oak, we like to think, for this is the very heart of Thomas Hardy country). ‘It is one of our favourite places,’ runs a typical report from a reader. ‘Ariane served at all meals, and the warmth of her personality imbued Yalbury Cottage with an atmosphere that made me feel very much at home,’ writes another. ‘Simple country style’ bedrooms are in a modern extension. ‘Mine was warm, comfortable and well equipped, but a couple more pictures on the walls would have made it cosier.’ After drinks in the lounge, dinner is served in the ‘softly lit, smart but homely dining room’. Chef Jamie creates short but varied menus of ‘fabulous food’ such as brill Cordon Bleu, brown shrimp, mustard mash, with a ‘very good wine list’. ‘Breakfasts were superb, too.’ After a full English, Bridport kipper with lemon butter, or brioche eggy bread with orange maple syrup, explore Hardy country – his old schoolhouse is over the road and you can walk to his birthplace. (Sara Price, Trevor Lockwood, and others)

Hotel details

Address

Lower Bockhampton
Dorchester
Dorset
DT2 8PZ
England

Telephone

01305 262382

Bedrooms

8. 6 on ground floor.

Open

all year except 23 Dec–14 Jan, closed Sun pm, Mon.

Facilities

lounge, restaurant, in-room TV (Freeview), garden with outdoor seating, EV charging.

Background music

‘easy listening’ in lounge in evening.

Children

all ages welcomed, extra bed free for under-12s, £20, 12 and over, no under-12s in restaurant after 8 pm.

Dogs

well-behaved dogs allowed in bedrooms (£8.50 per night), in lounge, not in restaurant.

Credit cards

MC, Visa.

Prices

B&B doubles from £130, singles from £95. À la carte £47.50.