The Bull Hotel Pub with rooms in Fairford, Gloucestershire

Prices from:
£100 per night

David Hancock says:

  • Revitalised Cotswold coaching inn
  • Quirky, country-rustic interior
  • Good modern British pub food
  • Full flavoured dishes; local ingredients
  • Rooms ooze cool country style
  • Fishing rights on the River Coln

Sticky FingersGood for WalkingOutdoor PursuitsCandlelitClose to WaterGreen FingersVisit a Stately PilePrivate Dining

Real Time Booking Available
Overview

The Bull Hotel Fairford, Gloucestershire, GL7 4AA

The personal touch

The extensive top-to-toe renovation of the rambling 15th-century coaching inn and its 21 bedrooms proved a massive undertaking in 2016 and the doors were finally pushed open to curious locals in May 2017 to reveal a striking, contemporary new look. Set designer Corina Burrough and interior designer Jo Titchener created the beautifully refurbished interiors, which successfully blend traditional features with bold colours and modern furnishings. It’s a cracking place with a wonderful, laid-back feel throughout, filled with beams, exposed stone, oak floors, flickering candles and jugs of fresh flowers on rustic wooden tables, cosy deep blue hues, and blazing log fires in big stone fireplaces. Expect the unexpected too, a giant head of a Texas longhorn above the fireplace in the bar, a huge flower mural covering a wall in the relaxing lounge, and trendy plank-lined walls (with horned bull skulls) and orange banquette seating in the rear dining room. The Bull Room, a traditional vaulted barn, is perfect for parties and weddings. The Bull overlooks Fairford’s attractive Market Sqaure and also has fishing rights to a 1.25 mile stretch of the River Coln making is a popular base for fly-fishing trips – from £50 per person a day for up to five people.

Sticky fingers

Kids are welcome throughout and can stay overnight with two z-beds available (£45 per night)

Muddy paws

Your canine chum is welcome in the bar but not overnight in the bedrooms.

Alfresco

Outside, there’s a courtyard garden and across the lane, The Bull’s gorgeous wild flower meadow is edged on three sides by the River Coln and available for al fresco drinking and dining and hosting private garden parties and outdoor weddings.

What’s the Damage?

17 doubles/twin; 2 family rooms; 1 bridal suite: £100-£220. Minimum two-night stay at weekends.

What Else?

  • All credit cards taken
  • Alfresco dining
  • Private dining (Bull Room – max 60)
  • Disabled access to bar & restaurant
  • No parking – spaces on street; free village car park 100 yards

 

Sleep

The Bull Hotel Fairford, Gloucestershire, GL7 4AA

Do not disturb

Jo Titchener has worked her design magic on the 21 individually designed rooms, creating beautiful shabby chic interiors that ooze cool country style with a soothing grey theme with splashes of bold colour (bright easy chairs, scatter cushions and stylish lampshades), locally sourced antique and vintage finds and great beds with quality linen, feather and down duvets, and locally-made throws from Cotswold Woollen Weavers (Filkins). Beams, period features, big lamps, painted furniture, smart TVs, free wi-fi, and fabulous bathrooms with striking floor tiles, huge walk-in showers (some also have roll-top tubs) and local posh toiletries by Wold Garden enhance the luxurious feel of the rooms. The icing on the cake – The Bull is a super-comfortable country retreat from which to explore the stunning Cotswolds landscape and villages.

 

 

What’s the Damage?

17 doubles/twin; 2 family rooms; 1 bridal suite: £100-£220. Minimum two-night stay at weekends.

What Else?

  • All credit cards taken
  • Alfresco dining
  • Private dining (Bull Room – max 60)
  • Disabled access to bar & restaurant
  • No parking – spaces on street; free village car park 100 yards

 

Eat & Drink

The Bull Hotel Fairford, Gloucestershire, GL7 4AA

Mastering the menu

(Starters: £5.50-£8.95; Main Courses: £9.95-£23; Desserts £6-£7)

The modern British menu makes good use of local, seasonal produce and combines pub classics with more adventurous dishes. Try one of the excellent stone-baked pizzas from the wood-fired oven, perhaps Putanesca topped with anchovies, olives, capers, mozzarella and tomato sauce. Nibble salt cod croquettes with lemon mayonnaise at the bar with a pint of Arkells, or a glass of organic Pinot Grigio, then kick of memorable meal with butternut squash, thyme, feta and mushroom risotto or beef tartare with harissa carrots and smoked mayonnaise. Follow with sea bream with chorizo jam, courgette and butternut squash puree, or a classic pub dish of pork and leek sausages with mash, caramelised onion and gravy. Leave room for coconut pannacotta with hibiscus and lime or the Bull cheeseboard served with quince jelly. Good lunchtime sandwiches, sharing boards, Sunday roasts and delicious breakfasts complete the pleasing picture.

Time to Eat

Breakfast: 8am – 10am

Lunch: 12 noon – 2.30pm (3pm Saturday & Sunday)
Dinner: 6pm – 9.30pm (10pm Friday & Saturday; 8.30pm Sunday)

Time at the bar

11 noon – 11pm (12 noon – 10pm Sunday)

What’s the Damage?

17 doubles/twin; 2 family rooms; 1 bridal suite: £100-£220. Minimum two-night stay at weekends.

What Else?

  • All credit cards taken
  • Alfresco dining
  • Private dining (Bull Room – max 60)
  • Disabled access to bar & restaurant
  • No parking – spaces on street; free village car park 100 yards

 

Food Trail

Take it back home
Tour the brewery that brewed your favourite pint, visit the shop on the farm that reared your delicious Sunday roast beef, and seek out the roadside stalls selling the local crab and samphire on the inn’s menu, the Food Trail features the local artisan producers and suppliers where you can buy to enjoy at home.

Change of scenery
Looking for a pub for lunch following a country walk, a different venue for dinner, or a good café for coffee, light lunch or afternoon tea, then the best in the area are listed below. If you find a new and exciting eatery in the area that’s worthy of a mention on the Food Trail, then please to do let us know – gabrielle@innplaces.co.uk.

1 Inn Location - The Bull Hotel

2

Daylesford Farm Shop and Cafe, Daylesford, Kingham GL56 0YG

Known locally as 'Fortnams in the field' Daylesford Organic is so much more than an award-winning farm shop, with a cookery school, cafe, clothes shop and spa. The farm shop offers the best in organic and food produced with the best environmental and livestock husbandry credentials. They have their own bakery and serve up vegetables from their own market garden.

3

Upton Smokery, Upton Downs Farm, Burford OX18 4LY

Located in the rolling Cotswold countryside outside of Burford, this family business smokes just about everything from game to fish. They also stock fresh game, paté, potted terrines, charcuterie and olives.

8

Made By Bob, 26 Market Place, Cirencester GL7 2NY

In the heart of Cirencester located in the former Roman Corn Hall building, this exceptional restaurant and deli attracts discerning foodies from all over the Cotswolds. Owner/chef Bob Parkinson previously worked under the great Simon Hopkinson at Bibendum restaurant in London and is regarded as one of the best chefs in the region.

10

The Old Butchers, Park Street, Stow-on-the-Wold GL54 1AQ

Chef Peter Robinson believes in nose to tail cooking and nothing goes to waste at his small, intimate restaurant in an old butcher’s shop. All dishes are lovingly made from scratch with flare and expertise – expect charcuterie, tapas and modern British cooking.

Out & About

1 Inn Location - The Bull Hotel

Activities

12

Gloucestershire & Warwickshire Railway, Toddington GL54 5DT

West of Stow, this is the perfect destination for anyone who still savours the unique thrill of steam travel. Though no longer part of the national rail network, these wonderful old trains have made a welcome return to the tracks and are a great way to discover the delights of the Cotswolds.

15

Off-Roading, Cotswold Water Park, GL7 5GF

If you enjoy a taste of adventure, the Cotswold Off-Road Driving School provides expert guidance from 4x4 competitors and instructors. Sample a day’s fun and excitement in a safe, controlled environment at the Cotswold Water Park, south of Cirencester.

16

Indoor Climbing, Northleach GL54 3AP

Enjoy a great climbing experience at this excellent venue where you’ll find indoor climbing and bouldering for all ages and abilities. This really is the place to reach new heights.

17

Cotswold Falconry Centre, Batsford GL56 9AB

Falcons, eagles, vultures and several other birds of prey swoop above you at the Cotswold Falconry Centre. You can even pose for pictures with an owl on your arm. The flying displays are especially memorable.

18

Daylesford Cookery School, near Kingham GL56 0YG

This is a must for anyone with a passion for real food. At Daylesford, south of Moreton-in-Marsh, you’ll find an excellent choice – from classic courses such as quick and simple suppers and seasonal dinner parties to something niche and specialized – for example, nose-to-tail butchery and artisan bread making.

Shopping

8

The Borzoi Bookshop, Stow on the Wold GL54 1BB

Based in Stow-on-the-Wold, this well-established independent bookseller stocks a vast range of books, including many of the classics. Out-of-print books, attractively designed greeting cards and wrapping paper are also available.

9

The Christmas Shop, Lechlade GL7 3AD

Established in 1985, the Christmas Shop in Lechlade is the oldest retailer in the UK specialising in all things festive. Open all year, this is the place to hunt out those elusive Christmas presents well ahead of the predictable December rush.

10

Teddy Bears of Witney, 99 High Street, Witney OX28 6HY

If you love teddy bears, a visit to this charming shop is a must. Established in 1985, Teddy Bears of Witney has the finest and most collectable teddy bears in the world. On permanent display, among other familiar old friends, is Aloysius, featured in the 1980s television series, Brideshead Revisited.

13

The Old Pill Factory, 53 High Street, Witney OX28 6JA

Spread over two floors, the Old Pill Factory in Witney is the place to visit for furniture, glass, toys, clothes and garden pieces. You’ll find a group of dedicated antiques experts who are passionate about antiques and vintage homeware.

14

Tickitty Boo, 6 Middle Row, Chipping Norton OX7 5NH

A children’s boutique with its own brand of clothing, designed by its award-winning owner, Julia Cook. There’s a wide selection of other labels, too, such as Hatley, Frugi and Toby Tiger. This is a treasure trove for children up to the age of eight.

22

The Apple Store, Batsford GL56 9QB

The Applestore, just a short drive from Moreton-in-Marsh, is just the place for beautiful, shabby chic interiors. Before leaving, you’ll be filled with ideas and within the store you’ll find antiques, quirky ephemera, candlesticks, soft furnishings, a range of gifts and plenty more besides.

23

Jungle Boutique, Cirencester GL7 1JH

Among a host of prominent retailers in the historic town of Cirencester is the Jungle Boutique, offering a range of unique clothes and accessories. French, Spanish and Italian designer ranges,with an eclectic mix of striking jewellery and bags reflect the latest fashions and trends.

24

Fresh, Witney OX28 6GW

Well worth a visit, this independent, design-led, contemporary greetings cards and gift store was established by the residents of this charming old town at the heart of Oxfordshire.

Places to visit

2

Hidcote Manor Gardens, Chipping Campden GL55 6LR

Hidcote is one of the country's greatest gardens, full of rare shrubs and trees, herbaceous borders and unusual plants from all over the world. In addition, there are superb views across the Vale of Evesham from the garden.

3

Blenheim Palace, Woodstock OX20 1PP

One of Britain's largest and most famous stately homes, Blenheim Palace offers a host of treasures to discover. There are guided tours of the staterooms and a chance to explore the estate's sumptuous parkland. A new Winston Churchill Memorial Garden and Footsteps Trail opened in 2015, taking visitors on a journey through the key achievements in the great statesman's extraordinary life and his early years in this area. Churchill's grave can be seen in the churchyard at nearby Bladon.

4

Sudeley Castle, Winchcombe GL54 5JD

Sudeley Castle was home to Katherine Parr, Henry VIII's last wife. She's buried here, as well, so this is the only private castle that's the final resting place of a queen. It's played an important role in England's often turbulent history and has royal connections stretching back over 1,000 years. Inside you'll find an interesting collection of furniture, paintings and unique artefacts, and the gloriously restored gardens are absolutely beautiful.

5

Chedworth Roman Villa, Yanworth GL54 3LJ

Situated in a secluded part of the Coln valley, the Roman villa at Chedworth dates from around AD 120 and is open daily from mid-February to the end of November and was originally believed to have been a farmhouse.

6

Cogges Manor Farm, Witney OX28 3LA

Cogges Manor consists of a 13th-century house and 17th-century farm buildings. These days it's a popular heritage centre with a strong emphasis on horticulture, rural crafts and family-friendly entertainment. It's also just the place to help understand the origins of early rural life and put the past into perspective.

7

Chastleton House, Chastleton GL56 0SU

Chastleton House, near Chipping Norton, is a fine Jacobean mansion with a striking south front. Now managed by the National Trust, the interiors of the 17th-century house may be familiar to television viewers as the family home of the Seymours in the BBC drama Wolf Hall. The small stone courtyard doubles for Putney, where a young Cromwell is attacked by his father.

19

Pendon Museum, Long Wittenham OX14 4QD

This meticulously detailed model of the Vale of White Horse in Oxfordshire is a breathtaking spectacle. Everywhere you look there are quaint thatched cottages, olde-worlde pubs and exquisite churches. Pendon is where the English countryside comes to life under one roof.

21

Cotswold Wildlife Park, Burford OX18 4JP

A day out at this popular visitor attraction is always a memorable experience – not least for the 260 different species of animals to be found here. Covering 160 acres of parkland and garden, the Cotswold Wildlife Park represents the largest privately owned zoological collection in Britain. There’s also a narrow gauge railway.

Walking

www.walkinginoxfordshire.co.uk

www.oxfordshirecotswolds.org

www.nationaltrails.co.uk

One of the best ways to discover the delights of the Cotswolds and upper Thames is on foot. There are numerous picturesque walks to be enjoyed here, as well as scenic stretches of the Thames Path, which follows the river from its source all the way to the Thames Barrier in London.

Cycling

www.walkandcycle.co.uk/oxfordshire

www.cycle-route.com

Two local landscapes, the upper Thames Valley and the Vale of White Horse, are perfect for cycling. Here, you’ll find plenty of quiet lanes and off-road routes. Not far away is the popular Oxfordshire Cycle Way. For something a bit different, try a combination of bike and train, using the lovely Cotswold line, which has a string of country stations from which to choose.

Events

www.cotswolds.com/whats-on/festivals-events

www.airtattoo.com

This is a part of the country where there is always something happening. There are many modest, small-scale occasions but there are also plenty of bigger events to draw the crowds, including the spectacular Fairford International Air Tattoo, held annually in July. Elsewhere, there’s the Chipping Norton Music Festival in March, the National Mills Weekend in May and the Charlbury Street Fair in September. Other fixtures throughout the year include traditional festivals and theatrical performances at Cogges Manor Farm, Witney, the Blenheim Horse Trials, Stroud Food Festival and the prestigious Cheltenham Literary Festival.

Getting there

Location, Location, Location

By Road: The Bull is located on Fairford’s High Street, just off A417 between Lechlade and Cirencester

By Rail: Nearest railway station is Swindon (London Paddington) – 25 minutes by taxi

Address:

Market Place, Fairford, Gloucestershire, GL7 4AA

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