Many years ago, when the kids were still young, we spent a couple of days around the SW, with friends Mark & Andrea. We spent a day visiting Bristol, Bath and the local canals. Being a whirlwind tour, in Bath, we only visited the Roman Baths, so this time we wanted to see other parts of the city, which is UK’s only city with a UNESCO World Heritage designation.
We planned a 2 night stay, with our preference again for a more rural location. I looked for small towns within a 10 mile radius of Bath, with easy train or bus links to downtown. Bradford-on-Avon met all the criteria. Searching for B&B’s, I found Widbrook Barns, which again ticked all the boxes and had great reviews.
Located on the A363 (Trowbridge Road) it is just across the canal bridge on the outskirts of town. After our extended day of touring Neolithic attractions, we arrived at our stated time of 18:00. Entering the driveway, we were met with a locked electronic gate, so pushed the button, which connected us to the owner’s cell phone. After a quick introduction, the gate opened.
Shortly after we parked and wandered around the property, we met Dick, the owner, who arrived to check us in. Great chap, really down to earth and very friendly. He was most insistent in helping with carrying the luggage to our room.
Entrance to our room
We had the end unit of a row of 4 or 5 rooms, which originally was probably one of the barns. It was spotlessly clean, modern and comfortable, with patio furniture outside.
After getting the luggage and showing us the room, Dick took us over to the restaurant, where they serve breakfast. He asked if we wanted a drink, pouring Judi a huge glass of wine and opening a bottle of local craft beer for me. Wow, no tea and scones; this was even better. He then took us to the guest pantry, which had a communal fridge.
Dick sat down with us and chatted about the various attractions in the local area, providing lots of brochures and pamphlets. To get to Bath he recommended taking the train, which is about 1 mile from the B&B, has ample parking, and trains run about every 1/2 hour.
After a thorough welcome and introduction, he excused himself, as he had to return to one of his other businesses, The Lock Inn.
Widbrook Barns Guest Garden
The above garden is where we walked through in the morning while heading for breakfast, which is served in the building at the end of the garden. With picnic benches and a number of seats, the garden was a pleasant place to sit and enjoy the late afternoon or early evening sun.
For dinner, we decided to try out Dick’s other business, the Lock Inn, which was a little over a mile walk, most of which was along the canal. After a pleasant stroll along the canal we arrived at the pub, picking up menus at the bar and heading to one of the outside tables.
Within a few minutes, Dick came rushing out and sat down at our table, thanking us for coming for dinner. He mentioned that his daughter purchases their beers and highly recommends the Cornwall Stout. Food and drink orders are submitted at the bar, so I went with his recommendation, starting with the Stout. It was sooo good, I might of had a 2nd, possibly even a 3rd.
Menu is typical pub food, but everything was made fresh, was tasty and it was served piping hot. Great dinner, at very reasonable prices. When clearing the table, the waitress asked if we were walking back, or could she order us a taxi, an offer we accepted. When the sun went down the mossies arrived and they were all teeth, so we headed inside, as the taxi wait was about 1/2 hr. Shortly after sitting down, Dick’s wife Jane brought us out a pot of tea, at no cost.
Kids barge – yes kids are welcome (courtesy of website)
This was a most enjoyable evening and we would definitely return to the Lock Inn.
Not sure what time Dick finished at the Inn, but he was back up again in the morning, bright and cheery, serving breakfast. Breakfast had the usual selection of cold cereals, juices, milk, tea and coffee, which were all available at the buffet table. Shortly after we sat down, Dick delivered a huge bowl of fresh strawberries. Isn’t it lucky Judi doesn’t like strawberries!! OMG, they must have been straight from the garden. The cooked breakfast is ordered every morning, cooked fresh and served piping hot. You may have guessed, the portions were substantial.
Our only regret is we only booked 2 nights at Widbrook Barns. If you are looking for accommodation in this area, we definitely recommend giving Dick and Jane a call, or check out their website. I would be very surprised if you departed disappointed.
Note: un-titled photos courtesy of their website.