The Bell Inn

Pub with rooms in Horndon-on-the-Hill, Essex

From £70 per night

Curator's notes:

  • Legendary 15th-century Essex inn
  • Traditional suites and contemporary rooms
  • Proper inn with cracking bar
  • Impressive wines and real ales
Book a room

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

Overview

Family-run for over eighty years, this 600-year-old coaching inn is legendary amongst locals, known for its excellent food, splendid accommodation and convivial atmosphere. The interior boasts historical beams, exposed timbers, rug-strewn wooden floors and flagstones. There's an outside seating area in the rear courtyard, covered with two giant umbrellas and festooned with colourful pots and hanging baskets.

The owners are dedicated to nodding to the pub's lengthy history, offering real ales in an informal chatty drinkers bar with a roaring fire. Delicious culinary offerings combine pub classics with modern British cuisine. Recent accolades include the Waitrose Good Food Guide, the Sunday Times Cool Hotel Guide and The Times top 30 places to eat, drink and stay - so don't miss sampling dinner in the prettily decorated garden.

Rooms from

Doubles and twins: £70


Good to know

  • All major credit cards accepted
  • Disabled access
  • Parking available
  • Private and alfresco dining

Family favourite
Children are welcome throughout the pub and overnight in the Bonson suite above the pub, the Hideaway Suite at High House or The Stable.

Dog-friendly
In the pub, dogs are allowed in the bar area but not in the restaurant, and they are welcome overnight in some of the bedrooms.

Water and waves
Take a stroll along the Thames Estuary Path with its dramatic views and invigorating breezes.

Rooms

Beautifully furnished and thoughtfully equipped bedrooms are set across the historic inn and High House - a stunningly refurbished Georgian property a few steps down the road. Enjoy four atmospheric suites above the inn, where exposed beams and timbers complement antique beds, comfortable sofas and smart bathrooms.

The High House boasts grand contemporary suites with feature bathrooms - think walk-in showers and double-ended baths. With lovely views over the garden towards the River Thames, smaller rooms feel fresh and modern, and make the most of the building's quirky Georgian character.

Restaurant & bar

The daily changing menu lists dazzling modern pub food withthe kitchen sourcing seasonal produce from local suppliers and making excellent use of the herbs and vegetables from the High House's kitchen garden. Dishes are imaginative with an emphasis on big and bold flavours.

Expect an impressive range of drinks at the bar, with an excellent 120-strong wine list with a number of great value 'take home' prices. Real-ale drinkers can enjoy locally brewed choices, and cocktail lovers can stroll up to buzzy Ostler's Bar for an Espresso Martini or two.

Private dining

Three meeting rooms of varying sizes (seating 6-60 people) are perfect for business and social events and can be set up for board meetings, family gatherings and larger private parties. There are regular gourmet and wine evenings at The Ostlers.

Things to do

Situated on the north bank of the Thames and originally constructed by Henry VIII to protect London against attack from France, Tilbury Fort is now managed by English Heritage and includes the only surviving early-18th-century gunpowder magazines in Britain.

For history buffs, head to Kelvedon Hatch Secret Nuclear Bunker - a simple bungalow built by the Air Ministry in 1952 which guards the entrance to the biggest and deepest cold war bunker open to view in south east England - 80ft below the Essex countryside. The bunker was originally designed for up to 600 military and civilian personnel, possibly even the Prime Minister, who would organize the survival of the population in the aftermath of a nuclear war. View communication rooms, a fully operational BBC studio, government rooms, canteen and dormitories.

Essex is very proud of their Blue Flag beaches along seven miles of stunning shoreline, where you can enjoy the simple pleasures of building sand castles or bird watching. But if you want to go up a gear or two, the BSKA approved Essex Kitesurf School run courses - everything from one-to-one tuition for beginners to those of you who are higher flyers.

Getting here

Directions

Nearest train station: Laindon
Taxi from station: 8min
Drive: 19min from Brentwood, 34min from Southend on Sea, 1hr from London

Address

High Road, Horndon-on-the-Hill, Essex SS17 8LD

Prices & availability