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Overview

Perched above the Pevensey Levels and set beside the church in pretty Wartling, the ancient Lamb Inn dates back to the 16th-century. Thriving as a local dining pub, its position in this beautiful and unspoiled part of East Sussex makes it an ideal destination for walkers, cyclists and literary-fans alike. Expect a warm, relaxing and informal atmosphere within the comfortably rustic timbered dining room, replete with head-cracking beams, a wood-burning stove and brass candlesticks on old dining tables.

Enjoy two blazing winter fires, jugs of fresh flowers, soothing heritage hues and a chesterfield sofa for pre-dinner drinking in the cool bar area to the rear. Evening candles enhance the laid-back charm of the place, which has a fabulous vinyl collection too. Flick through the discs and put on a classic album on the decks by the bar or enjoy a quiet drink by the fire in the snug bar.

The rear terrace boasts smart teak tables and chairs, a flower festooned pergola, olive and fruit trees in big pots and a wood-fired oven delivering freshly baked pizzas, perfect fodder for kids after a day on the beach.

Rooms from

Doubles: £95


Good to know

  • Amex not accepted, Visa / Mastercard / Maestro all accepted
  • Disabled access
  • Parking available
  • Alfresco dining
  • £10 dog stay charge

Dog-friendly
Dogs are warmly welcomed in the bar and overnight in all the bedrooms.

Outdoor adventures
Cuckmere Haven, Firle Beacon, the River Ouse and the chalk cliffs of the Seven Sisters are just some of the cherished South Downs landmarks popular with ramblers and walkers.

Family favourite
Smaller portions, great pizzas, highchairs and extra beds are all available for little ones in the pub.

Quiet romance
Blazing fires, plenty of candles and moody jazz records create a relaxed, romantic vibe across the inn.

Rooms

Watch your head as you wind up the steep staircase from the bar to reach the five cosy rooms that ramble across the first floor. Expect low-hanging beams, wonky floors and a clever use of space. Rooms are simply and tastefully decorated and designed, with latch doors, soothing heritage colours, bespoke panelled headboards, quality fabrics and antique tables and objet d'art.

Comfortable Mattisons mattresses topped with thick feather duvets guarantee a good night's sleep and added touches include a Robert's radio and Noble Isle toiletries. Room 4 has the largest bathroom with a roll-top bath and quieter Rooms 3 and 5 overlook the rear terrace.

Restaurant & bar

The restaurant's monthly menu evolves with the seasons, drawing inspiration from the rich larder of produce found in this unspoiled corner of East Sussex. There's all sorts of food and drink on offer here, from craft beers, cracking wines, good seasonal food and pizzas on the secret summer terrace. Locally shot pheasant, pigeon and partridge dishes are chalked up on the specials board during the winter months. Meat from Sussex farms is sourced from Gunne Butchers in Bexhill, while fish is delivered daily from Newhaven, and bread from Bexhill Bakery.

Beers and ciders are also very local, such as Vermont Pale Ale from Gun Brewery, Harvey's Sussex Ale from Lewes and heady Silver Lining Cider from South Downs Cider. There's plenty of decent wines, cocktails and mocktails too.

Things to do

There are numerous cycle routes right on the Lamb's doorstep, while around Lewes there is a great network of country lanes and some of the best off-road cycling in the south of England. Another option is to combine a pleasant half-or-full day's cycling with a trip by train, getting on or off at any of the stops on the nearby Brighton/Hastings line.

Literary lovers shouldn't miss Charleston in Firle, the former rural haven of the literary set. Virginia Woolf spotted this remote settlement on the South Downs while out walking one day in 1916 and Charleston became the home and country meeting place for the writers and artists of the Bloomsbury group. The Bloomsbury artists painted furniture, ceramics, and murals, which can be seen at the house from March to November, along with a collection of paintings by Picasso, Derain, Sickert and Delacroix.

Those wanting a little more history, explore Battle Abbey, part of 1066 country and the site of the battle at Senlac Field. Today Battle Abbey is in the care of English Heritage and is a hugely popular visitor attraction.

Getting here

Directions

Nearest train station: Pevensey Bay
Taxi from station: 6min
Drive: 19min from Eastbourne, 28min from Hastings, 48min from Brighton

Address

Wartling, East Sussex BN27 1RY

Prices & availability