In December 2013 we booked our company’s Christmas party at The Royal Oak, Tetbury (aka TROT!) Our employees stayed overnight.
Where to start? The recent refurbishment (it only opened 4 months ago) has been so lovingly and thoughtfully completed (just the garden to be sorted this Spring/Summer 2014, apparently).
Tetbury must be very grateful to the owners for saving a local pub such as this. (I’m sure I read somewhere that up to 4000 pubs are expected to close in 2014?)
This ‘inn with rooms’ does not disappoint. And even if it did, the members of staff are so friendly and obliging that any problems would be quickly rectified, I’m sure.
The beer! And the bar.
The beer selection is wide-ranging and so well considered and well kept. My husband was thrilled that on this occasion there were even British beers from Williams Bros and Wild Beer Co. The bar is beautifully crafted and very well stocked and I was so pleased that their soft drinks were just as good. I particularly liked the Bumbleberry and the fruit juices that contained agave (rather than cane sugar) where necessary.
The bar area is cosy and warm and welcoming with an in-tune upright piano from the Art Deco period. I was happy propping the bar up and I don't even drink alcohol! For those who would like to know: if you have a disability it is possible for you and your party to pre-book a table in the bar when eating and the terrain is flat from the entrance through to the right hand side (there is a step to the left of the bar). All other diners will find they can only pre-book the upstairs dining room and private dining room.
The dining room.
Well, it's a stunning room. My words won't do it justice so I'll leave it at that. There is a separate, bookable private dining room as well.
Not a large menu but good, wholesome choices. "The manager gave us an engaging little presentation about the beef that they source and its provenance", said one of our party. I am so thrilled that we booked our party here, confident in the quality of the produce being offered. Everyone loved their food. The vegans amongst us were very excited about being given a delicious choice. Our menus were even personalised. A nice touch.
The furniture is a lovely eclectic mix of sturdy vintage finds (for those who need to know such things, the chairs don't tend to have arms). It would be nice if a few of the upholstered seats could be revamped padding-wise as I could imagine a long lunch might get a bit tiring. A small point but I hope it is considered.
Very friendly members of staff. ‘Smiley’ would describe them perfectly ☺ Nothing is too much trouble and they seem very knowledgeable. But remember: this is a community inn. Their raison d’être is to bring the community together and create a t m o s p h e r e. This is smart, friendly yet informal dining.
Clean and well designed. Even the 'Gents' is beautiful!
Very reasonably priced. Don’t expect the least expensive to be a huge room. It isn’t. But each room has its own charm and is very well presented. Our employees were delighted with their overnight stay and said they would heartily recommend TROT to anyone. Plenty of hot water. Lovely warm rooms. “Breakfast was fantastic!” said…all of them (the vegans again were very enthusiastic).
Just be aware that this is a listed building and so apparently local planning laws prevent the building being altered in a way that would affect its character. I mention that because on a rainy night, if unprepared, you might not care for the quick (very quick!) dash across the uncovered courtyard and up the stairs to the 1st floor bedrooms. I’m sure they would have brollies available, but it was something that struck me when leaving so I thought I’d mention it here. Personally I like the idea of staying in a separate building to the main inn and its dining room.
I can’t comment as the gardens were not complete, however the cobbled stones in the courtyard are beautifully done. We are looking forward to seeing the garden and having some lazy sunny meals during the summer months.
The inn has a free public car park behind it and its own car parking as well. It is not in the hustle and bustle of the town but just a 1 minute drive (or 5 minute walk) from the centre, in a quieter location. Perfect.
And lastly… The evening and overnight stay were so successful that we have booked to have our own Christmas lunch at TROT as well.
Thank you to all the staff and the owners too. We had such a fabulous time. We are following you on Facebook and have seen the amazing events you have put on, which seem to be very well received. Good for you.
UPDATE: We had a lovely Christmas lunch at TROT, with family. A family member has a very serious food allergy and yet the Chefs even made her very own meal without the offending ingredient. So obliging. We were really impressed with the level of care and service.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Following the sympathetic restoration of a 17th-century Cotswold inn, The Royal Oak in Tetbury reopened in August 2013 as a fun, creative and friendly free house. There's an intimate saloon vibe in the bar, informal dining upstairs and six lovely en suite rooms sit on the other side of the cobbled courtyard in the former skittle alley. A short walk up the hill and the delights of Tetbury await! ... more less
- Also Known As:
- The Royal Oak Tetbury Cotswolds