Cosy Cambs pub where a famous highwayman hid from the law

With nights feeling far darker and colder all of a sudden, many of us are looking for a cosy pub to visit.

Tier 2 Covid restrictions currently mean that pubs in Cambridgeshire can only serve alcohol with a ‘substantial meal’, so why not pick one with a delicious restaurant?

The Bell Inn in Stilton, Cambridgeshire ticks all the boxes for a cosy pub dinner – inviting, a divine menu and plenty of intriguing legends.

Situated just off the A1 to the south of Peterborough, The Bell has managed to combine historic charm with modern day comforts and incredible food.

The building is a former 16th Century coaching inn, and while it’s thought to date back to 1500, its origins could stretch back even further as there is a record of a local innkeeper in 1437.

What stands there today is a building dating back to 1642, built from oolitic limestone and slates of local Collyweston stone.

Some of its main fascination, though, is the colourful characters associated with the pub.

From statesmen to outlaws, literary figures and the everyday folk of the nearby towns and villages – the inn has welcomed everyone across the centuries.

The Bell Inn in Stilton
The Bell Inn in Stilton
(Image: Chris Morgan)

One of the most famous tales handed down through the years is of highwayman Dick Turpin, who supposedly hid there for nine weeks while he was being hunted by the law.

During his stay he was surprised by a raid, and allegedly threw open the window and jumped onto his horse Black Bess to gallop off up the Great North Road – now the A1.

Today the pub and restaurant offers several dining locations – from the casual and cosy bar area, to the exquisite dining room and even a private option for more intimate functions.

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The chef uses local ingredients wherever possible to create some simply stunning meals.

So if you’re looking for a meal that’s both substantial and delicious, why not check out their menus?

The winter comforts section of the menu is elevated British cuisine at its best – whether you’re in the mood for the slow cooked short rib of beef, fancy something warming such as the chargrilled calves’ liver and bacon or fancy the classic old English sausages and mash – there’s plenty to choose from.

The menu is seasonal, so will change depending on when you visit, but there’s sure to be something to please everyone whether you’re after something warming, classic, or a lighter bite.

The Bell also offers some delightful afternoon tea options, from a classic cream tea to the fabulous option with fizz.

So if you’re after a change of scenery, and feel like getting out for a delicious meal – why not try out The Bell? Our stomachs are rumbling just thinking about that menu.

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