Bull Inn

Pub with rooms in Olney, Bedfordshire

From £90 per night

Curator's notes:

  • Refurbished 17th-century coaching inn
  • Overlooks Market Place in pretty Olney
  • Eclectic pub menu served all day
  • Quirky, well-designed rooms
Enquire to book

Speak to us on +44 (0)20 8161 0100

Overview

Set beside the Great River Ouse and close Emberton Country Park, Olney comes as a surprise, a small market town with attractive Georgian houses and independent shops and a genteel, upmarket feel. At its heart, overlooking the bustling Market Place, the Bull is a 17th-century coaching inn that has recently been stylishly upgraded and refurbished.

The former coaching arch and yard has been incorporated into the inn, the latter now a spacious, bright and airy atrium-style dining room with tiled floor, comfortable booth seating and an open-to-view kitchen. Beyond is a sheltered terrace for summer alfresco eating. The rambling front bar areas retain the original character and charm of the building with open fires, wood floors and low ceilings, and popular window seats where you can peruse the papers over a pint and watch the world go by.

The Bull Inn is one of two premium pubs with rooms in the Little Gems group owned by the brewery Wells & Co.

Rooms from:

13 doubles: £90

Good to know

All major credit cards accepted

Disabled access

Alfresco & private dining

Parking available

Olney

The pretty Georgian market town on the banks of the River Great Ouse offers a host of independent shops to explore, as well as the Cowper & Newton Museum, which celebrates the lives of two influential poets who lived in the town during the 18th century, one writing the hymn Amazing Grace.

Events & celebrations

The Green Room is the perfect space (seats 24) to celebrate special occasions while The Snug (seats 15) can be booked for a family lunch or dinner.

Rooms

Each of the 13 beautifully refurbished rooms have their own unique style. All but one of the rooms are located above the inn and the constraints of the 17th-century building has resulted in some interesting layouts, especially in the smaller rooms, where bathrooms are incorporated into the room.

Expect to find under-lit roll-top baths, walk-in showers (& baths) and contemporary sinks sunk into antique tables and washstands in these imaginatively designed rooms. In addition, rooms are very comfortably kitted out with rugs on wooden floors, quality linen, down and colourful woollen blankets on sleigh or four-foster beds with 1,000-sprung mattresses, plus antique furnishings, Nespresso machines and decent TVs.

The boutique rooms are named after cattle breeds or places associated with cattle and split into four types - Very Good, Really Good, Top-Notch and Accessible. Top-Notch rooms (The Pastures & The Dairy) are big rooms with seating areas, roll-top baths in the room and a separate shower. The Stables is the Accessible room, with two separate beds for a family and a huge bathroom that's fully equipped for disabled guests.

Restaurant & bar

Served throughout the rambling and informal bar rooms and the airy, atrium-style dining area, replete with open-to-view kitchen, the eclectic seasonal menu (plus innovative weekend specials) trawls the globe for inspiration and champions comfort dishes, all freshly prepared using locally sourced ingredients.

In true gastropub fashion, nibble on artisan breads with balsamic and olive oil, start with the likes of bubble-and-squeak with poached egg and hollandaise, before tucking into sausage and mash with caramelised onion gravy, crab and prawn linguine with chilli and rocket, or a classic Dexter burger with tomato jam and Asian slaw. Leave room for warm chocolate and pecan brownie. Wake up to an imaginative breakfast - interesting vegetarian options.

At the bar, expect a decent range of craft beers, including Charles Wells Triple Hop IPA brewed just down the road, a raft of spirits, notably an interesting array of boutique gins and vodkas.

Things to do

The Cowper & Newton Museum celebrates two great men who lived in Olney: the leading 18th Century poet & letter writer William Cowper and his friend, John Newton who wrote the hymn "Amazing Grace" while living in the town.

Stowe Landscape Garden was created in the 18th Century and is regarded as one of Europe's most influential. Expect to find delightful planting and fine structures at Stowe and it's a beautiful place to enjoy some peace and quiet! A National Trust site, with a lovely cafe.

Beautiful Woburn Abbey is set in a 3,000 acre deer park and is the ancestral home of the Duke of Bedford. The Abbey showcases antiques, fine furnishings and works of art by Gainsborough, Van Dyck and Canaletto. There are 28 acres of award-winning historic gardens.

Getting here

Directions

Nearest railway station: Milton Keynes

Taxi from station: 18min

Drive: Northampton 23min; Bedford 21min

Address

9 Market Place, Olney, Bedfordshire MK46 4EA

Enquire to book

To make a booking, please use the form below or you can call our reservations team on 020 8161 0100. Our phone lines are open Monday - Friday, 9am - 5.30pm.

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