There’s nothing quite as appealing as an informal inn offering good, fresh food made with great ingredients, cosy, stylish rooms with a warm welcome to match, especially when it’s starting to feel distinctly chilly outside.
After a week of closure, last week we re-opened our guest bedrooms after after a top-to-toe makeover, giving the fine Georgian building, once the home of the Clinch family who owned Witney’s Eagle Brewery, a gorgeous new look that’s still very much in keeping with its historic roots.
Each of the pub’s bedrooms has its own individual quirks and charm, all of which have been enhanced by the recent work. With some rooms overlooking the green and others, the honey-coloured stones the town’s famed for, the look is all about bringing nature in – soft greens, leafy prints, rich russets and plenty of polished wood.
Luxurious velvet button-backed headboards in sumptuous velvets, with piles of cushions to match, exquisite hand-printed statement wallpapers from Cotswolds makers Rapture & Wright, crisp Egyptian cotton sheets and antique writing desks combine elegance with complete comfort. The best room in the house boasts a fabulous four poster bed for sleeping in style, best enjoyed after a long relaxing rain shower. Others showcase plush teal velvets offset by splashes of bold orange and all have new sleek bathrooms.
The Fleece has four king rooms that are likewise full of character, whether traditional old-world brass beds or chic velvet ottomans, with one sharing their own floor with a neighbouring cosy room over in the cottage next to the pub – perfect for families or small group getaways. Others come in the cosiest of styles, with many of the same touches of elegance – plush velvet fabrics, hand-printed wallpapers, antique armoires and gilt mirrors – all with really smart design. There is also a really spacious family room that’s fully accessible on the ground floor of the cottage.
All have fantastic bathrooms with powerful walk-in rain showers and herringbone tiled splash backsin on-trend Scandi greys and teals, generously stocked with fluffy white towels and herbal enriched treats for hair and body, created by Damana. Reliable free Wi-Fi and high spec TV, doubling up as a radio, are in each room for a well-connected stay.
Breakfast, plus lunch and dinner and everything in between – is served downstairs in our well-appointed eatery or bar, offering the same fine view over the green. Eat breakfast like kings, tucking into traditional favourites, alongside new classics, all made with top-notch produce including free-range bacon and sausages from Jimmy Butler’s Blythburgh farm in Suffolk. Start the day the best way with smashed avocado, poached egg, spring onion and chilli on sourdough; coconut milk porridge laced with raisins, almonds, toasted seeds and honey or a fabulous full English.
All stays include breakfast, and the location makes The Fleece ideal for a leisurely break in the Cotswolds, for a spot of shopping at nearby Bicester Village or simply for enjoying the tranquillity of the pretty market town of Witney. The pub also makes for the perfect place for business travellers seeking a friendly, convivial stay.
We have an exclusive stay offer for those living in Witney, so sign up to The Fleece website to be the first to take us up on the offer and be the first to see one of the new rooms.
The Fleece is at 11 Church Green, Witney, Oxon, OX28 4AZ. Tel: 01933 892270 www.fleecewitney.co.uk