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Hotel review: Why The Lamb Inn in the Cotswolds village of Shipton-under-Wychwood gets five stars

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The Inspector checks into a Cotswolds pub with ‘tasteful’ decor, nooks and crannies and superb food (best he’s eaten all year)

  • The Lamb Inn, in affluent Shipton-under-Wychwood, opens in June
  • There are five ‘tasteful’ bedrooms accessible via a steep staircase
  • Remember… The inspector pays his sentence – and tells it like it is…










The Lamb Inn website recommends that guests have a car during their stay. But I’m not so sure.

It would mean missing out on the chance to arrive at Shipton Station, where the platform is so short that the doors of only one carriage can be opened safely and the weeds are so high you’d think it’s completely deserted.

I get out and immediately stand in the yard of Matthews Cotswold Flour Mill, where I ask a man in overalls for directions to The Lamb. “Turn right and follow your nose,” he says.

The Lamb Inn, pictured, opened in June and is jointly run by Peter Creed and Chef Tom Noest

I do and it takes me through the affluent village of Shipton-under-Wychwood, past stately homes with names like Shipton Grange, Shipton Lodge and Shipton Standing.

Opened in June, The Lamb is run jointly by Peter Creed and chef Tom Noest, 30-somethings who both had success at nearby Wheatsheaf.

First impressions are important. I am greeted by the chatter of happy diners scattered in various nooks and crannies, with beautiful original flagstone floors; a creaky bar where you can sit with your dog and enjoy a pint; an outside patio and young staff running around looking excited to see me. I bet they are all friends or friends of friends of Peter and Tom.

Most people come here for the food. There are only five bedrooms accessible by a steep staircase. I walk into mine and the sliding window is wide open, so I can just hear the sound of church bells.

Inspector says: 'Anyone who lives within half an hour of Het Lam can count themselves lucky'

Inspector says: ‘Anyone who lives within half an hour of Het Lam can count themselves lucky’

The decor is simple, but tasteful. Two antique tables on either side of the bed; a dresser; a nude painting (of a man); luxury linen duvet and pillows; black and white tile floor in the bathroom.

Downstairs I get a corner table that seats three people, even though I’m traveling alone. It’s one of those menus where you want to eat it all, so I start with excellent olives, then some padron peppers, followed by vichyssoise and anchovy toast (the toast is the best I’ve eaten all year) before moving on to candied duck and chips with aioli on the side.

If you were presented with this in a French village, you would whine about it even longer. Reasonable prices too. But it’s here in the Cotswolds and anyone who lives within half an hour of The Lamb should consider themselves lucky.

TRAVEL FACTS

The Lamb Inn, Shipton-under-Wychwood, Oxfordshire, OX7 6DQ.

Tel: 01993 832116, thelambshipton.com. Double from €99.

Judgement:

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