The Beckford Arms

Pub with rooms in Fonthill Gifford, Wiltshire

From £105 per night

Curator's notes:

  • Seasonal food celebrates bold flavours
  • Crackling fires, hammocks & candlelight
  • Simple, modern rooms that ooze comfort
  • Don't miss the Beckford Bottle Shop
Book a room

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

Overview

Visionary owners Charlie Luxton and Dan Brod reinvented this country pub for the 21st century with style and panache a decade ago. A true trailblazer, the Beckford Arms ignited the trend to transform faded pubs with rooms into thriving modern-day coaching inns, and remains a 'beacon' in the business that many pub entrepreneurs aspire to emulate.

Its relaxed atmosphere and easy-going service work well with the slightly wonky period charm of the 18th-century building, and gloriously rural location on the edge of the Fonthill Estate makes this a superb spot for a little rest and relaxation. On wintry nights the place exudes a dark, burnished warmth, thanks to soft lights and log fires, balmier days draw you into the garden, where hammocks, rugs and shady trees deal with most of the vaguaries of the British summer and a boule piste provides gentle exercise.

Make sure to check out the Beckford Bottle Shop in Tisbury, with a fantastic selection of over 300 wines from around the world, as well as craft beers, ciders and boutique spirits, you're sure to find your favourite tipple from the inn to take home with you.

Rooms from

Doubles: £105


Good to know

  • All major credit cards accepted
  • Alfresco & private dining
  • Estate lodges
  • Parking available

Family favourite
Families very welcome across the inn - attic room is ideal for bring children.

A touch of culture
With Salisbury Cathedral and Wilton House closeby, there's plenty to keep history buffs and culture vultures happy.

Scenic and serene
Situated on the edge of the Fonthill Estate in the Nadder Valley close to Cranborne Chase, it's wonderfully rural location makes the inn a superb spot for a quiet getaway.

Rooms

Climb the grand Georgian staircase to eight gorgeous bedrooms. With their simple, unmistakably modern feel, you'll feel like you're in an upmarket hotel rather than a country pub.

A few rooms are compact but all are kitted out with all manner of creature comforts, from Egyptian cotton sheets, Siberian goose down duvets and Vintage Welsh wool blankets, to posh Bramley natural bathroom products, a hot water bottle and fresh milk, quality tea and coffee, and a chocolate bar.

The best, in the attic, spreads over two bedrooms (one for children or a single adult) and a sitting room, another has a free-standing bath parked quirkily in the bedroom - it's the perfect family room.

A 10-minute stroll from the pub, in the heart of the Fonthill Estate with views across lake and parkland, are two stunning lodges, each with simple kitchens, sitting rooms with wood-burning stoves, and bed and bath on mezzanine level for soaking up the view. Ideal for those seeking a little solitude.

Restaurant & bar

Taking full advantage of the surrounding countryside, including game from the Fonthill Estate, chef Richard Peacocke celebrates local ingredients, favouring simple, seasonal dishes.

As the Beckford is all about eating and drinking, dining tables are dotted everywhere, not only can you eat in the restaurant and the lively bar, but also more intimately in the sitting room where lounging sofas beckon afterwards. In the bar, who can resist the delicious homemade sausage roll temptingly positioned by the beer pumps and best enjoyed with a pint of Pheonix beside the crackling fire.

From the short daily menu perhaps start with Brixham scallops, cauliflower puree, pickled fennel and herring roe, followed by estate-shot pheasant, sauteed potatoes, savoy cabbage and celeriac puree, leaving room for bread and butter pudding with rum butterscotch sauce. In warmer weather, spill out into the garden and tuck into pizzas cooked in the outdoor wood-fired oven.

Amongst a range of local ales, you'll find Beckford Phoenix ale, designed by nearby brewer Keystone. An interesting, accessible and varied wine list offers affordable but exciting wines from small producers in both the New and Old World, with 22 available by the glass or carafe.

Private dining

The Library, a cosy room filled with handpicked antiques, can seat up to twelve diners for intimate celebrations. The Sitting Room seats up to twenty four diners and is available from Monday - Thursday. The kitchen team curate menus to suit the occasion, think succulent, locally reared ribs of beef, family-style fish pie, or inventive plant-based dishes.

Things to do

Not for the faint-hearted! Larmer Tree Gardens on Cranborne Chase offers hot air ballooning, with stunning views of Wessex and southwest Wiltshire from the air. The trip usually lasts between three and four hours and offers a rare opportunity to see this vast landscape, known for its ancient sites and enigmatic crop circles, from a totally different perspective. An exhilarating experience!

Spend a day in gorgeous Wilton House. Home of the Earls of Pembroke, the house was designed by Inigo Jones in the 17th century, and later remodelled by James Wyatt. Inside is the Double Cube Room, which contains a famous collection of Van Dyck paintings. Look out for the former riding school, a Tudor kitchen and a Victorian laundry. There's an incredible adventure playground to keep little ones occupied for hours.

Immortalised in John Constable's famous painting Salisbury Cathedral from the Meadows from 1831, don't miss Salisbury's staggering cathedral, with a spire that's the tallest in the country, painted in 1831. The cathedral was begun in 1220, finished about 1280, and includes a medieval frieze and an original copy of the Magna Carta.

Getting here

Directions

Nearest station: Tisbury
Taxi from station: 5min
Drive: Shaftesbury 21min; Salisbury 35min

Address

Fonthill Gifford, Tisbury, Wiltshire SP3 6PX

Prices & availability