The Bell Rings In The Changes!

The Bell at Alderminster, part of the Alscot Estate, has recently undergone a build project to provide a brand new two storey restaurant. The acclaimed Inn offers all-day bar and dining across two floors, with outside seating overlooking the sprawling riverside meadow & Stour Valley, as well as luxury guestrooms.

The contemporary building was designed by award-winning local architects, Marson Rathbone Taylor, who are recognised for their creative ideas and commercial awareness. The steel framed structure, with grey aluminum fascia and render façade, stands proud and impressive, yet neat, between the existing brick construction. Inside, the restaurant has large open spaces with a full height atrium and floor to ceiling glass panels and windows.

The interior design and finish has the owners stamp all over it; effortlessly stylish without being pretentious. Emma Holman-West, a keen designer and stylist, has planned the space carefully to offer comfort and modern luxury without compromising the characteristic spirit of the eighteenth century pub.  The ground floor restaurant, decorated in soft pastels and silvers, with seating directly onto the terrace, serves everything from breakfast through to dinner. The top floor, with dark wooden floors inside and out, and polished copper tables, has panoramic views across the Stour Valley with its own seated balcony for additional dining, or afternoon tea.

The extension took just 14 weeks to complete, a tall order for construction specialists Cotswold Oak and a risky venture for the Alscot Pub Company itself. In order to keep the schedule on track, and due to long lead in times for the main, and most costly, components of the building, the steel and glass was ordered and made to size from plan. It was a nail-biting time for Emma but due to the skill and precision of the respective trades and professionals, all went to plan.

Emma took the decision to invest in the £250,000 expansion as a response to demand for further space within the pub. General Manager, Tina Craven, explained, “In addition to increased covers, since opening the first four of nine guestrooms in 2010, the accommodation has grown from strength to strength. There became a distinctive need to provide somewhere within the pub, other than the confines of a bedroom, where guests could simply sit, read, relax, and enjoy”. To overcome this the bar has increased and softer individually designed “lounge” style pieces of furniture has been added.  

What was known as the library room has been transformed into a bright spacious domain with grand furniture, opulent accessories and comes with its own private lawn garden and decked patio.  It will be able to host a more formal dining experience, making it perfect for private events.

The village pub’s sought after, sophisticated and landscaped alfresco terrace and expansive gardens overlooking the rolling countryside is the envy of many, and a rarity for the area. The wood-fired handcrafted globe makes a fitting focal point for casual and relaxed drinking and dining.

The modern mainly British menu is overseen by Head Chef Stuart Hiorns, who joined The Bell in 2015.  The drinks menu includes the Bell’s very own draught & bottles beers - Alscot Ale and Alscot Monkey – alongside craft and guest ales, seasonal cocktails, together with a well-curated wine list for all tastes and Stratford Gin from Alscot based Shakespeare Distillery.