Set in the six-house hamlet of Grazeley Green, just outside of Reading, The Old Bell has taken pride of place at the centre of this quaint village for centuries, and continues to transport guests back to a time when life was simpler and more relaxed.
The Old Bell is set amid endless fields in the bucolic Berkshire countryside. Not only is the pub located within easy reach from the city of Reading, it is also close to several notable historic sights including the impressive 18th century Basildon Park mansion and parkland.
The pub’s traditional red and brown-brick façade and black roof sees it fit in seamlessly into the historic hamlet of Grazeley Green. Inside, an open-plan interior features dark leather stools, tall oak tables, pastel-coloured curtains and cream wood-clad and baby blue walls, which bring a sense of modernity to this centuries-old village pub.Read more...
Grazeley Green is a tiny six-house hamlet just outside of the city of Reading. Despite its diminutive size, the hamlet definitely doesn’t lack heritage. Its name originates from the Anglo-Saxon word ‘griesley’, meaning ‘grazing land’, which perfectly describes the grassy landscapes surrounding the pub. Grazeley Green has changed hands several times over the years, having been first owned by Reading Abbey, then Sir John Williams and then the Earls of Abingdon.
Less than 30 minutes’ drive away is the National Trust’s Basildon Park mansion, which is perhaps best known for featuring ITV’s hit period TV series, ‘Downton Abbey’. The mansion was used as a filming location both in the 2013 Christmas special and in the season five finale in November 2014. Though the Georgian mansion was originally built in the 18th century, it did suffer extensive damage during World War II and was subject to a large-scale renovation and restoration project in the 1950s. You can relax in the gardens of the park with a traditional English cream tea, explore the many lavishly decorated rooms or walk along trails that pass through the historic parkland.
Also close to the pub is Forbury Gardens, a centuries-old park that once housed Reading Abbey. Until the turn of the 19th century the park, then referred to as the Forbury, held large fairs three times a year. The fairs attracted visitors from across the country who came to showcase their skills and sell their goods.The Old Bell pub is a modern-meets-historic country pub with a brown-brick façade and black-tiled roof. Anyone curious as to where its name comes from will find their answer right in the middle of the lounge, where the eponymous old bell takes pride of place among the pub tables.
The Old Bell is situated on a quiet road, which means that rather than attracting large numbers of casual passers-by, the pub tends to draw in guests who have chosen to make the journey here from other parts of the country. Many guests who come to the charming little village choose to make a night of it and stay in the Premier Inn next door.
In many ways, The Old Bell is more than just a pub. It is a tourist attraction in its own right and a home-away-from-home for anyone who comes to Grazeley Green. All guests will be warmly welcomed into the cosy and friendly centuries-old pub that has been brought into the 21st century with modern appliances and facilities, while still preserving characterful historic touches, such as exposed wooden beams set around the doors and windows. There is on-site parking for drivers and a small beer garden at the front of the building, offering views out over the surrounding countryside.Show less...