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Overview

Close to the iconic Hadrian's Wall and the wide-open countryside of the North Tyne Valley, the Battlesteads is a rural bolthole steeped in traditional heritage - Dee and Richard Slade have transformed the place without losing any of its rich, traditional character. .

Set in the heart of rural Northumberland, it is the perfect inn for keen walkers and history lovers alike. Beams, old panelling and a warming winter fire create a well cared for but unpretentious look in the cosy bar - a welcoming spot for a pint Durham Brewery's Magus - and low beams and wood furniture set against light painted walls continue the decorative theme through to the lounge and the two dining areas. In warmer months, dine alfresco in the sheltered walled garden.

Sustainability is intrinsically woven into every aspect of how the Slades' operate the Battlesteads - their commendable carbon neutral aims, which include a wood-chip boiler, solar panels, minimal waste through composting, their own poly-tunnels and market garden, are clear indicators of a caring, thoughtful approach to all aspects of inn-keeping.

Rooms from

Doubles/twin: £135; Lodges £195


Good to know

  • All major credit cards accepted
  • Disabled access
  • Alfresco dining
  • Weddings
  • Dark Sky Observatory
  • Parking available
  • Dog stay: £10

Dog-friendly
Canine chums are very welcome here with dog-friendly bedrooms and doggy packs at the bar.

Outdoor adventures
Keen walkers can take on a section of Hadrian's Wall; or for something more relaxed, enjoy the wide-open countryside of the North Tyne Valley.

Dark Sky Observatory

Richard's on-site Dark Sky Observatory with its powerful telescope is open to guests and visitors and there are regular talks, events and stargazing and Astro courses.

Rooms

Twenty-two modern, good-sized bedrooms range from easy-to-get-to ground floor rooms - two with disabled access - to light and airy first floor rooms. All have good quality beds and linen, spotless good-sized bathrooms, many with bath and shower.

Décor is eclectic with bold statement wallpaper being complemented by soft colours, creating a fresh yet restful ambience. The smart and spacious lodges boast high ceilings, vast beds, easy chairs, a private terrace, and big bathrooms featuring double sinks, spa baths and walk-in monsoon showers.

Controlable roof lights in the pitched ceiling allows you to lie back in your bed and experience the magic of the dark night sky. While excellent broadband access is available, there's no mobile network signal so your phone will not work. Bliss.

Restaurant & bar

Authentic, home-grown and locally sourced food underpin the culinary ethos of the Battlesteads, which showcases a passion for ethical and local ingredients.

Boasting vegetables straight from the kitchen garden and greenhouse, alongside seasonal venison and game from the estate and home-smoked duck and salmon, the inn offers a smorgasboard of delicious options to suit every palette. Whether sampling the legendary eight course tasting menu or tucking into pub classics like fish and chips, there's plenty of culinary delights to keep all diners happy.

For those looking for something a little lighter, check out the ale and snack options in the cosy bar. With a variety of local ales, including Durham Brewery Magus and Fyne Ales Jarl, there's something for all tastes. The inn's eco-friendly ethos can be seen through their carefully chosen wine list from Bibendum, featuring lesser-known, organic and bio-dynamic wines.

Things to do

A short hop away you'll find Hexham Farmer's Market, which takes place every second and fourth Saturday of the month. This long-established market in the heart of Hexham features producers from within a 50-mile radius of the town. Stock up on locally-reared meat, vegetables, bread, cakes, cheese, preserves and smoked products.

A little further along the road, you'll find Belsay Hall Castle and Gardens, located just north-east of Corbridge. Boasting thirty acres of outstanding gardens, a unique mix of Grecian architecture, medieval ruins and a Victorian tearoom to boot, Belsay Hall is a perfect place to pass a pleasant afternoon.

If it's a fun adventure-filled day out you're looking for, head for Kielder Forest. Kielder Water is Britain's biggest man-made lake, set within the 250 square miles of England's largest working forest. Amongst a whole range of great activities for both adults and children, are fishing, birdwatching and geocaching.

Getting here

Directions

Nearest train station: Hexham
Taxi from station: 21min
Drive: Hexham 22min; Newcastle 45min; Carlisle 56min

Address

Wark, Hexham, Northumberland NE48 3LS

Prices & availability