Note to readers: Our stay was complimentary; however, the views and opinions expressed are genuine and this post was produced without any external editorial control.
The Bell at Selsley may look like a typical country inn from the outside, but there was nothing ordinary about this dog friendly establishment!
We arrived a little bit earlier than expected and the pub was still closed but fortunately we were spotted by a very proactive and helpful gentleman who checked us into our room early instead of leaving us sat in the car park.
There are only two rooms at The Bell and we were in ‘The Dovecot’, the larger of the two rooms, which is actually a suite. There is a lounge area adjacent to the bathroom with a walk-in shower and a separate bedroom with a king sized bed.
We were left with a tray which had a selection of homemade biscuits, fresh milk, flowers and a complimentary G&T courtesy of Mark & Sarah, the owners. Elsewhere in the room we found a coffee maker, Bose speaker, a selection of books and some Bramley toiletries in the bathroom.
Elsa had her own mat, towel, a few poo bags and huge biscuit which she devoured with pleasure!
The furnishings are all very good quality and although they are modern they sit very well in this 16th Century grade II listed property, complimenting the original features including the stone window frame and exposed beams. I know this is going to sound strange but I particularly liked the carpet! It was soft and luxurious, very different from the usual carpet that you will find in the average dog friendly room elsewhere. Everything was spotlessly clean too.
The rooms are built into the loft area and they are accessed through a secure entrance at the back of the pub so you have to go outside to get back into the main entrance which allowed Elsa plenty of time for a quick toilet break before we headed in for dinner.
Dining at The Bell
The pub is separated into two dining sections that sit on either side of the cosy bar area and dogs are made to feel very welcome everywhere, in fact there were several of them relaxing in the bar when we arrived.
A waiter showed us to a table in the extension which overlooks a beautiful stretch of countryside and Elsa settled under the table, keeping a watchful eye out of the window for the local cat who was lingering around outside.
You can really tell that a lot of thought has gone into everything that they do at The Bell and the food takes centre stage.
This was no ordinary pub meal!
Owner Mark is also the chef and he has combined his passion for food with years of experience working in the kitchens of prestigious establishments, including Claridge’s, to create delicious dishes that are worthy of the pub’s listings in The Good Food Guide, The Michelin Guide and The Good Pub Guide.
Everything is made from scratch and the meal was absolutely delicious. Desert came with an extra treat as it was hand-delivered by Mark himself!
One of the things that makes The Bell Inn so special is the personal nature of the service.
After dinner we treated ourselves to some tipple from the bar before we went back up to our room. They have an extensive selection of spirits including over 90 gins and since I’m a huge fan, I sampled ‘Mrs Chef’s Ruin’, the house gin at The Bell which went down very well. Mrs Chef has very good taste!
The next morning we headed out onto Selsley Common with Elsa before breakfast. The area is within walking distance of the pub but since it was drizzling we decided to drive up. There are plenty of parking bays.
For anyone unfamiliar with ‘commons’ (this is the first time we’ve been to one), they are large, open grasslands with gentle slopes and they are traditionally used for grazing cattle. (Luckily there were none about when we visited, but I understand that you can expect to find them there from spring to autumn.) I didn’t take my camera to Selsley Common that morning but here are some photographs that I took at Rodborough Common which we found on our way to The Bell the day before. Both Commons were crawling with dog walkers and Elsa had the time of her life running around and playing with all the other dogs. Even though these aren’t the sharpest images, I absolutely love these photographs because they capture the serendipitous spirit of the moment. Having these Commons close by was a real highlight for us because we love it when Elsa can let off steam and she had a lot of fun!
Breakfast at The Bell
A hearty breakfast was just what we needed after our morning walk and we were not disappointed. Everything was made to order and we also had the opportunity to sample some of Mark’s ‘Marvellous Marmalade’ which he makes in batches every year. Jars are available to buy in the pub too.
Elsa couldn’t believe her luck when she got her own breakfast sausage too, a very special treat!
The only downside to our stay at The Bell was the fact that we had to leave. This is a rare find and it reminded me why I started blogging in the first place; to support establishments that allow people to enjoy the company of their dogs without compromising on quality. We are very grateful to everyone at The Bell for making us feel so welcome and to Mark and Sarah for their outstanding food and drink!
The Bell at Selsley has free Wifi for guests!
There are a number of circular walks in the area and the Cotswold way is easily accessible from the pub.
The Bell at Selsley also hosts regular events including pub quizzes and dog walks. They even hosted a dog photo shoot in the pub recently! Keep an eye on their Facebook page for more information.
Paws across the Cotswolds…
There are lots of attractions and activities that you can enjoy with your dog in the Cotswolds! While we were in the area we took Elsa to Broadway Tower and village, explored The Rollright Stones and the Cotswold Motoring Museum & Toy Collection in Bourton-on-the-Water.
Other dog friendly attractions include Batsford Arboretum, Cotswold Wildlife Park, Birdland, the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Steam Railway and Cotswold Lavender. We hope to pay these places a visit with Elsa on our next trip to the Cotswolds!
For more inspiration and details of walking routes in the area, please have a look at The Outdoor Guide’s walks in the Cotswolds.
The Bell at Selsley is listed on the UK’s leading pub accommodation website: Stay in a Pub, a one-stop booking platform for customers wanting to experience the good food, real ale, fine wines and hospitality that the Great British pub has to offer.