Dating from the 15th Century, The Bell has long enjoyed its status as the main drinking and meeting hall in Castle Hedingham. Many features help to furnish the Inn with its unique character.

THE PUBLIC BAR

Centrally located and overlooking St James' Street, the Public Bar started life, together with the Parlour to the east, as a hall house in approximately 1440.
Subsequent renovations including a firestack and first floor were completed by 1500 and The Bell Inn was established
This cosy room retains the classic atmosphere of a 'locals bar' complete with a wood burning stove, a traditonal settle and several bar stools under the guardianship of various regulars.

parlour

THE PARLOUR

Originally a servants' area adjoining the grand hall, the Parlour contains a very fine example of exposed wattle and daub which was accidentally discovered whilst attempting to restore an early oak doorway. Formerly known as the Front Room, the Blue Room and the Non-Smoking Room, the Parlour is ideal for meetings and parties.  Exhibits by local artists are often displayed on the walls.

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THE SALOON BAR

This was originally the second servants' wing adjoining the great hall. The raised gallery in the Saloon Bar was part of the kitchen pantry until the 1960's - the old meat hooks can still be seen on the beams.  For the last 50 years, this small stage has provided the perfect platform for a variety of live music acts, whilst the Saloon Bar itself, with its warm brick walls and log fire is a charming room to enjoy a meal or a pint and watch the world go by.

backbar

The Back Bar

A late 18th century addition, this sunny room together with the construction of the first floor function room indicate that The Bell enjoyed increased prosperity at this time. From the late 1700s, The Bell was one of the main coaching houses on the route between Bury St Edmunds and London. An inventory for The Bell dating from 1836 lists the rooms as follows: Counting House, Commercial Room, Coach Office, Magistrates Room, Sadler's Room, Post House, Stable, Knife House, Skittle and Bowling Grounds.

The Disraeli Theatre and Function Room
A magnificent barrel ceilinged function room believed to have been built around 1790, the Disraeli Theatre has served many purposes, from a court house to an auction room.  As an Assembly Room for the Hinckford Hundred Conservatives, the Disraeli Theatre operated as both a political and social arena.  Notably it was the scene of a speech by Benjamin Disraeli, hence the name. This grand room is now being restored to its original function – as a pub theatre.  It is also a popular venue for local societies and is available for private hire. Please see EVENTS for further information.

patio

The Smoking Patio and Marlboro Heights

We have a covered area accessible via the French doors from the Back Bar which provides a social and comfortable area for smokers.  There is a wealth of tobacciana such as old enamel advertising signs and a pre-war cigarette vending machine.  During the colder weather, we have 2 patio heaters whilst in the summer, customers can purchase their drinks from the al fresco 'Peacock Bar' - a welcome addition to Friday nights.  Marlboro Heights is a lofty first floor balcony, servicing both the pub and the Disraeli Theatre.

The Orchard AND

Hop Garden

 

To the rear of The Bell is an extensive walled garden.  A former home to such pastimes as cock-fighting, skittles, bowling, quoits and croquet, the garden is currently divided to provide a rough meadow (to accommodate the pub dogs), an attractive 'hop garden' (to accommodate thirsty customers) and a small allotment (for the benefit of a green-fingered regular and the Bell kitchen). The hop garden is an ideal area for families to enjoy on a warm day.

 

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