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Overview

The creeper covered, three-storey Rose & Crown holds a commanding position in the centre of the historic village of Romaldkirk, standing right by the village green and 12th-century church of St Romald.

There's a rugged charm to the place, with its narrow passages, beams and stone walls, logs sparkling in the fireplace in the bar, and a touch of refinement in the lounges and oak-panelled restaurant. Owners Cheryl and Thomas Robinson have injected high standards of hospitality and service while maintaining the essence of a village inn since taking over almost a decade ago.

The menu is as rooted in the environment as the pub itself, focusing on authentic local flavour. Wooden bench tables and the gravelled terrace out front is the perfect place to perch and plan your day, with a pot of tea or a pint of Black Sheep to hand. Or, on colder dates, head into the comfort of the main lounge with its wood burning stove.

COTTAGE - Behind the inn is Monk's Cottage, a pretty 17th-century building with views over the green and Saxon church, offering flexible room spaces with separate sitting rooms, study areas, boot room and a small galley.

Walking into the Rose & Crown is like a warm embrace.
Simon and Jen - The September Chronicles

Rooms from

Doubles and twins: £135

Good to know

  • All major credit cards accepted
  • Disabled access
  • Alfresco & private dining
  • Parking available
  • Fishing & Walking
  • Dog stay: Free

Family favourite
The children's menu will satisfy young appetites and the three suites have sofa beds that are perfect for family groups.

Quiet romance
With fabulous bedrooms, a stellar wine list and great menu, enjoy this countyside inn on a quiet weekend for two.

Dog-friendly
Dogs are welcome overnight in all rooms excepting just one, and for those who do stay over, your canine chums can expect to receive a welcome letter from pub dog Mabel (Director of Canine Relations no less!), as well as a towel, bowl and a pack of local-made 'Welly Bix' dog treats.

Rooms

When it comes to staying the night, it's true to say the Rose & Crown has something for everyone. There's a genuine mix of styles available, but every room is comfortable and tasteful, with bespoke furniture, local artworks on the walls, and a classic, country-house feel.

In the main pub building, the rooms are on the first and second floors, with the top floor providing suite-type spaces with the added appeal of views over the village. Expect some quirky features, old beams and, in one case, a superb en suite bathroom where anyone over six feet will have to proceed with caution.

Behind the inn is Monk's Cottage, a pretty 17th-century building with views over the green and Saxon church, offering flexible room spaces with separate sitting rooms, study areas, boot room and a small galley. There's also the single-storey Courtyard, with its contemporary rooms and private patios.

Restaurant & bar

Dave Hunter's seasonal menus champion local suppliers and the fabulous fresh produce grown in the kitchen garden at Headlam Hall, the Robinson's sister hotel further down Teesdale.

When it comes to eating, the oak-panelled dining room is hard to beat, with its period character and smartly laid tables. The well-crafted menu includes seasonal picks of local trout and game from local estates, and even the simpler stuff such as sandwiches and fish and chips are done really well. Scottish smoked salmon with fishcake, broad beans, peas, buttermilk and lemon is a simple and effective first course, followed by loin of Teesdale lamb, braised lamb shepherd's pie, mint pesto and lamb jus. The comforting desserts (sticky toffee pudding) and an array of local cheeses show the same attention to detail, and Sunday lunches bring in the crowds.

At the bar, Black Sheep Bitter and Wainwright from Thwaites are the mainstays at the pumps, alongside seasonal guest ales. Wines come from Firth & Co of Northallerton, with a list that includes lots of interesting bottles from smaller independent growers, there's always at least nine by the glass.
Things to do

Visit Barnard Castle, an English Heritage property steeped in history. Taking its name from its 12th century founder, the castle passed into the hands of Richard III. Set on a high rock above the River Tees, its fantastic views over the river and surrounding countryside are not to be missed.

History lovers will also enjoy nearby Bowes Castle, the impressive ruins of Henry II's 12th century keep. Situated on the site of a Roman fort, its a great stop for those heading for a day walking on the Pennines.

Getting here

Directions

Nearest train station: Darlington
Taxi from station: 37min
Drive: Teesdale 13min; Durham 52min; Carlisle 1hr 19min

Address

Romaldkirk, Barnard Castle, County Durham DL12 9EB

Prices & availability