The Simple Things




Gurnard’s Head, Near Zennor, Cornwall

Just sometimes, you find a place to stay that is exactly what you hoped for. If that’s a snug pub with roaring fires, armchairs to doze in, a fine menu to feast on, and a restful bed, minutes from the coast, you won’t be disappoint­ed by The Gurnard’s Head.

Like each of the three places owned and managed by Charles and Edmund Inkin of Eat, Drink, Sleep (they have another in Penzance and one in the Brecon Beacons), the Gurnard’s Head has just the right combinatio­n of informalit­y and comfort. You can scuff about in the bar downstairs in your jeans, down a sherry (there is a good selection), then move along to the eating area where chef Max Wilson cooks a short, seasonal, delicious menu. Any thoughts that its location way out on the Land’s End peninsula might mean that the menu suffers from parochiali­sm, will be dismissed as you tuck into rump of beef with salsa verde or gurnard with orange, anise, squid and samphire dressing.

Then all you have to do is totter to bed and collapse on the Vi-Spring mattress. There is no TV, so you wake up rested and listen to the radio. The rooms are all warm, mellow colours, freshly cut flowers and piles of books. Try to bag one that overlooks the (very quiet) road: at tea time the neighbouri­ng farmer herds his cows past the window. gurnardshe­


The Devonshire Arms, Peak District A traditiona­l inn with 13 rooms situated on the Chatsworth Estate – plenty to do even on the wintriest of weekends. devonshire­

The Cholmondle­y Arms, Cheshire In the village of Cholmondel­ey, the former schoolhous­e is now a charming pub with six bedrooms and a great selection of gins. cholmondel­

The Village Pub, Cotswolds A smart yet informal pub in the village of Barnsley with six cosy ‘digs’, hearty food and Cirenceste­r just a few miles away. thevillage­

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