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“The worst hotel we have ever spent time at”

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Shillingford Bridge Hotel
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Shillingford
Peterborough, United Kingdom
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“The worst hotel we have ever spent time at”
Reviewed 26 July 2014

Having paid to "upgrade" to a premier room for a two night stay, imagine the surprise on arrival to be presented with a ground floor room facing a car park albeit with the river just visible. On seeing inside the room for the first time the smell of damp, torn wallpaper, large tear through the curtain, badly stained and worn faded carpet, filth behind the toilet requiring our cleaning it off and no towels with a double bed with sheets that had not been ironed or changed from last occupants was a joy to behold. Had we not been staying with another couple who are good friends with the same problems in their room we would have left for another hotel.
Imagine the surprise when two towels arrived which were still damp requiring changing for two completely different patterned and sized towels. Having brought the faults to the attention of the receptionist telling her the hotel was tired and dirty, she agreed it was!
It became apparent that a considerable number of the remainder of the rooms were let to workers doing night shifts who spent most of the morning before going to bed drinking from bottles in the car park and riverside before dumping them in the "fag bin"
The bedding was so bad we bought a duvet cover set whilst in Oxford to cover the filthy pillow cases supplied and cheap torn duvet for the second night. The bar is massively overpriced for cloudy draught drinks which indicate dirty lines, this from the author who was in a previous life a brewery technician,the breakfast on both days was just about edible as items from the hot self serve Bain Marie's were supplied ad hoc with warm food. The swimming pool was filthy,so cloudy that the bottom was not visible and the rest of the hotel decor and behind the scene services are dirty. I do not know whether this is a local staffing problem or a group issue but for what could be a prime hotel site on the river this as it is now is sadly lacking.

Room Tip: There are no good rooms
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank kimthompson44
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rob C, Manager at Shillingford Bridge Hotel, responded to this review, 24 February 2015
Thank you for taking the time to write your review. I am sorry that we did not meet you expectations during your visit to the hotel. I was disappointed to read that we were unable to provide the service and quality that is demanded within the business. We have made some improvements within our bedrooms. We now have an external laundry company delivering fresh, clean, white linen on a daily basis. We also now have a new housekeeping team where we have seen a dramatic increase in cleaning standard throughout the building. Under the new management, we are also improving the quality of the product throughout, including redecoration externally and throughout the interior.

Kind regards
Rob
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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621 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (183)
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English first
Orpington, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
84 reviews
32 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 July 2014

What a pity the hotel does not match its position along the river bank. Clean and comfortable, with pleasant and helpful staff, but pricey (London Pub charges) in the bar and other elements that do not rate the charges made.
There are lots of small areas of concern, which when all added together lower the overall standard but when considered individually may seem irrelevant. It seemed to me that the managers have not been to a catering and management college and although that may seem hard, and there may have been reasons for the points in question, it certainly as not obvious?

Let me itemise them:-

I agree with some other reviews whereby other guests (obviously workers elsewhere) being loud and obtrusive when departing from the car park.
A disabled parking slot was furthest from the hotel entrance.
Notices showing the times for meals had not been proof read before putting up, and the breakfast entry was garbled.
We booked a twin room and were given a double that appeared not to have been prepared with the pillows looking as though they had been slept on and a phone in the middle of the bed.
On getting the proper accommodation, the linen was cream and so looked unwashed when compared to the duvet that was showing at the end of its cover.
Double headboard (or maybe even a large single) for twin beds.
Bed lamp was immediately above the middle of the pillow and prevented me from sitting up straight. Weird!
There was no bed valance, the fitted sheet barely fitted on to the mattress and the protector has not flat so it looked as though the bed had not been made properly. It all looked like a hostel!
Breakfast adequate, but the chef could not cook poached eggs - they were delivered partly broken and had little white on them - presumably left in the water where it had broken away from the yolk?
I didn't get the bacon I ordered but didn't mention this as I would have ended up with cold items had I waited, but other items were hot, well cooked, and tasty!
Toast (self cook) was underdone but there was a note prohibiting a second run through.
There was no fresh fruit.
Cereal was limited in variety, and left in large boxes on the buffet table. Dirty hands in there?
Coffee machine didn't work correctly, although did dispense hot water OK.
Orange juice not freshly squeezed.
Choice between butter and spread was not provided.

Overall a little below three star, even though they had a nice outdoor pool (seemingly only open weekends and limited hours) and lovely surroundings/river bank area. Some of the carpets were threadbare in parts.

What a pity - and as a number of other reviewers have said, it needs some money being spent - and the staff educated (those we met were very willing) in how to run a good hotel. The receptionist seemingly had to run off and make the beds in our case, but planning was obviously a dirty word.

Room Tip: Away from road and car park!
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Robert T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rob C, General Manager at Shillingford Bridge Hotel, responded to this review, 6 March 2015
Thank you for taking the time to write your review. I was somewhat disappointed to read that you did not have an enjoyable experience. Since your last stay, we have made many improvements including upgrading the quality of rooms and now having outsourced laundry for all the bedrooms providing a better standard throughout. Our breakfast is vastly improved not only in quantity but quality and consistency.

Kind regards
Rob Carr
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bromley, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
25 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 July 2014

I last stayed at the Shillingford Bridge Hotel 24 years ago and thought it was a lovely hotel. My partner and I have been walking the Thames Path and we decided to stay there again. The receptionist was lovely and very friendly. She gave us our key but when we got to the room it wasn't what we had booked and the bedding looked as though it had already been slept in and the phone was on the bed. The room smelled musty. We went down to the reception again and she changed the room without any fuss and went and made up the beds herself. The new room was over the carpark, literally and was fairly noisy with people coming and going at all hours. The beds looked like we were in a camping room. The fitted sheet didn't fit the mattress, there was no valance covering the base of the bed and the bed linen looked as though it had seen better days. The room was clean though. There was only one sachet of coffee but this was replenished once we had asked for it. I feel it should have been there waiting for us.
We decided not to eat dinner there as the reviews had put us off so we bought our own salads and had that in the garden.
Breakfast the next morning was another disappointment. The toaster hardly toasted the bread and we were forbidden to change the settings on the toaster or put the toast through twice! The cereal boxes were all torn and looked like something you would allow at home rather than in a hotel. We ordered a cooked breakfast, my partner ordered bacon, baked beans, hash browns and a poached egg and I ordered two poached eggs. He got a plateful of baked beans, no bacon, the yolk of a poached egg and a couple of mushrooms and I got two poached eggs, one broken all over the plate and neither had much egg white left on them. The coffee machine didn't work and then when it did, it didn't taste like coffee.
My feeling with this hotel is that the staff are being let down by materials and management. I couldn't fault the friendliness of the staff and they tried to be helpful but it seemed that management couldn't care and so what the staff had to work with was second rate. I don't think the room was worth the £79 we paid for it and the drinks from the bar were London prices. We have stayed in far better places for less. I wouldn't think I will be staying there again which is a pity as the location is beautiful and it has a lovely pool.

Room Tip: Make sure you don't get the room which straddles the car park as it was very noisy
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank lindy048
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rob C, Manager at Shillingford Bridge Hotel, responded to this review, 24 February 2015
Thank you for taking the time to write your review. I am sorry that we did not meet you expectations during your visit to the hotel. Now that we are under new management, we are making strides into external and internal redecoration and improvements which are currently undergoing. We now have our laundry outsourced, improving the standards in this area. We have had large improvements in our menu offerings for our Lounge, Patio and Restaurant. Since your visit, our breakfast service has vastly improved and in general receives positive comments and feedback.

Kind regards
Rob
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC

Travellers are raving about these Shillingford hotels

crowthorne
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 July 2014 via mobile

Stayed overnight as attending wedding nearby. Arrived at hotel at 2.30 pm along with others from wedding our party. Although check in states from 2.00pm many of our rooms were not ready. We were given our room key, but when we got to our room the bed was unmade and had not been cleaned. As we had to get ready for the wedding the receptionist said we could use the room, which we obviously refused. We did not want to get ready for a wedding in a dirty room. She then let us use a single room to get ready which was fine. But all of this took over half an hour and put us under pressure to be ready on time. The receptionist had a difficult job dealing with the many problems and had to leave reception as she was crying.
On returning to the hotel after the wedding we were able to use the room that by then been
cleaned. The rooms were very tired, grubby, and quite honestly smelt very unsavoury. The pillows had a distinct aroma. There was a tea tray, but no kettle. The hallways and stairs looked like they had not been hoovered for months. No one in our party had a positive comment to make about this hotel. We would have left and stayed somewhere else if there had been a choice.
Avoid at all costs. The worst hotel I have ever stayed in. The cost of our room was £85. I would not return if the room was free.

  • Stayed July 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank moiraCrowthorne
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rob C, Manager at Shillingford Bridge Hotel, responded to this review, 24 February 2015
Thank you for taking the time to write your review. I am sorry that we did not meet you expectations during your visit to the hotel. I was disappointed to read that we were unable to provide the service and quality that is demanded within the business. We have made some improvements within our bedrooms. We now have an external laundry company delivering fresh, clean, white linen on a daily basis. We also now have a new housekeeping team where we have seen a dramatic increase in cleaning standard throughout the building. Under the new management, we are also improving the quality of the product throughout, including redecoration externally and throughout the interior.

Kind regards
Rob
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cowplain, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
24 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 July 2014

There is only one good thing to say about this hotel and that is its location. Situated beside the River Thames next to Shillingford Bridge, just outside the town of Wallingford, the view is picturesque.

In all honesty, I cannot find anything else good to say about this hotel. My wife and I were going to a friend's 60th birthday party in Wallingford, and decided to turn it into a mini break by spending the night before in a hotel nearby. This was very much a last minute, spur of the moment decision. How I wish I had looked on Tripadvisor before my wife booked us into the only hotel in the area with any vacancies - the Shillingford Bridge.

As part of the online booking procedure we were asked our estimated time of arrival. When we arrived, during the time period we had given (2pm to 3pm), we were given our room key, but on entering our room we found that it had not been serviced, with the bed still unmade.

It was suggested by the receptionist, when we pointed this out, that we might like to have a drink in the bar whilst we waited for our room to be got ready. No suggestion of a complimentary drink by way of an apology for the inconvenience caused.

It took them an hour to supposedly service the room. The housekeeping staff in this hotel need to be sacked. We had one large towel only, a quarter of a toilet roll and the absolute minimum of teabags and sugar and two sachets of decaff. coffee, no full strength at all. There must be a war on and rationing has been re-introduced. This is also the first hotel I have been in that did not give you at least one packet of biscuits. There were none. In addition there was mildew on the shower curtain, dust in the corners of the room and on the skirting boards. The wallpaper had last been renewed in about 1950 and the shower was of the same vintage. We did not walk barefoot on the carpet because there were various undefined stains on it and it was the same vintage as the wallpaper.

We managed to get another towel and a toilet roll out of some surly member of the housekeeping staff. We would have left and gone back home and returned to Wallingford the following day, had it not been for the fact that my wife had arranged for two other friends to join us at the hotel for an evening meal.

The evening meal was quite reasonable, not outstanding but it was acceptable. Breakfast was a different matter. it was dire. Basically everything was do-it-yourself. Find yourselves a table, queue up to make your own tea/coffee at some antiquated machine, queue up to make your own toast and queue up to lift the lids on some archaic hot trays that might or, more likely, might not hold some breakfast item like a piece of bacon or an egg. These trays were never quickly replenished, so you had to queue again to get the breakfast item that was not available the first time round.

I have emailed the general manager of the hotel, who is on leave for a week, probably trying to get away from all the complaints, to ask for a partial refund as I consider £120 a night a rip off. Many third world hotels are better than this. The hotel needs a total makeover, the staff need customer care training. In addition a visit from the local council's environmental health team might not go amiss either.

You have been warned, stay away.

Room Tip: Pick another hotel
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Guild4dlad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rob C, Manager at Shillingford Bridge Hotel, responded to this review, 24 February 2015
Thank you for taking the time to write your review. I am sorry that we did not meet you expectations during your visit to the hotel. I was disappointed to read that we were unable to provide the service and quality that is demanded within the business. We have made some improvements within our bedrooms. We now have an external laundry company delivering fresh, clean, white linen on a daily basis. We also now have a new housekeeping team where we have seen a dramatic increase in cleaning standard throughout the building. Under the new management, we are also improving the quality of the product throughout, including redecoration externally and throughout the interior. Our breakfast standard has severely improved since your last visit and we receive nothing but positive comments not only regarding the presentation but also the quality.

Kind regards
Rob
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Northampton, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
29 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 July 2014

This hotel has so much potential. The location is great. We stayed here with friends as we wanted to visit Oxford and Henley and it is ideally situated. Wallingford has some nice places to eat.

We arrived to find our room, a river view on the upper floor. The room was in definite need of refurbishment and I have never seen bedding like it. The bed did not feel clean and the bedding was not fresh. Breakfast was acceptable - not replenished quickly enough..

I have looked at this hotel on internet and understand it has been recently bought, I hope that some serious investment is put into this hotel as the potential is fantastic. Try upgrading to a 4 star and stop the 'workers' staying there (noisy in car park).

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank suze53_12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rob C, General Manager at Shillingford Bridge Hotel, responded to this review, 6 March 2015
Thank you for taking the time to write your review. I was somewhat disappointed to read that you did not have an enjoyable experience. Since your last stay, we have made many improvements including upgrading the quality of rooms and now having outsourced laundry for all the bedrooms providing a better standard throughout.

Kind regards
Rob Carr
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bristol, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 July 2014

Please beware this is a great location, the staff are really nice and helpful, but it stops their. The hotel is really tired and in desperate need of tlc, on arrival we had a nice welcome from the receptionist who explained where our room was and welcomed us , we had upgraded to a river room view, and we're charged an extra £15.00 per night for this. We were booked into room 51, which is apparently the best room/bridal suit, and is in fact a bungalow!!, after walking up a unswept walkway and small patio area with weeds growing everywhere we entered the front porch and were greeted with a terrible damp smell, we walked through the next door to a bathroom with jaquzzi bath, but the sink was filthy, we then entered toilet area no 2 where the taps were dripping in the sink, and the walkin shower was cold only, (wife discovered this later). Next was the bed room which was really musty but worst of all the bed sheet did not fit the bed and was not fresh???
It was all creased and obviously had not been changed, the lounge was next and as other advisors have mentioned the furniture would not even be sold in second hand shops it was awful, plus the carpet was filthy and had not even been hoovered. We loaded suitcases back in car and went to reception and complained , the lady was very apolagetic and offered us a complimentary drink at the bar whilst she went and cleaned it?? On reinspection she had done the best she could even spraying fresh air spray to help the smell for an hour, the location is great but the people who run this hotel obviously no how bad the place is and still sell these rooms, if nothing is done soon this place won't survive which would be a shame.

Room Tip: Do not book room 49,50,51 if given these rooms check them out first, the only good thing about them...
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Helpful?
7 Thank Kidd22
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rob C, Manager at Shillingford Bridge Hotel, responded to this review, 24 February 2015
Thank you for taking the time to write your review. I am sorry that we did not meet you expectations during your visit to the hotel. I was disappointed to read that we were unable to provide the service and quality that is demanded within the business. We have made some improvements within our bedrooms. We now have an external laundry company delivering fresh, clean, white linen on a daily basis. We also now have a new housekeeping team where we have seen a dramatic increase in cleaning standard throughout the building. Under the new management, we are also improving the quality of the product throughout, including redecoration externally and throughout the interior.

Kind regards
Rob
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Shillingford Bridge Hotel

Property: Shillingford Bridge Hotel
Address: Shillingford Road, Shillingford, Wallingford OX10 8LZ, England
Region: United Kingdom > England > Oxfordshire > Wallingford > Shillingford
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Shillingford
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Shillingford Bridge Hotel 3.5*
Number of rooms: 40
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Shillingford Bridge Hotel is located between Oxford and Henley, with beautiful views over a quiet part of the River Thames. The hotel boasts 40 comfortable bedrooms, ranging from Four Poster Rooms or Suites for those special nights away, to well-equipped single rooms, which are ideal for the business traveller. A perfect retreat; guests can enjoy the outdoor heated swimming pool throughout the summer months, plus delicious home-made food all year round. The River View Restaurant serves freshly prepared food and has panoramic views over the hotel's grounds as well as the banks of the Thames. The River Bar serves light meals and snacks, and even has an outdoor terrace with river views. The hotel has plenty of free parking, and Wallingford’s town centre is just a 5-minute drive away, while Oxford can be reached in 20 minutes by car. Windsor Castle is 50 minutes' drive, and Dorchester is less than 10 minutes away from the hotel by car. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Shillingford Bridge Wallingford
Shillingford Bridge Hotel Wallingford

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