As the nights draw in and temperatures begin to plummet, it’s not all doom and gloom as the comforting warmth of a real fire lures us into pubs across the country. It’s time to raise a glass to the cold, huddle by the hearth and indulge in some Great British pub grub…

The Sweffling White Horse, Sweffling, Suffolk

Heated entirely by wood, this traditional, award-winning pub has not one, but two cosy fires to snuggle up in front of during the colder months. Tuck into a hearty pie, made by nearby Farmcafe and warmed through on the wood-fired range cooker, and enjoy it with a pint of locally brewed beer straight from the barrel. Rainy-day entertainment is covered too, with billiards and darts among other classic pub games.

The Bush Inn, St Hilary, South Wales

Nestled in the Welsh countryside, this picturesque 16th-century coaching inn has an inglenook with a roaring log fire, which featured in the BBC series of Sherlock. Olde-worlde ambience, a thatched roof and original oak beams are a welcoming way to warm you up on a chilly day. Don’t miss the delicious home-cooked pies and Wellingtons, with an abundant choice of fillings, before taking a pew post-dinner on one of the irresistibly comfy sofas.

Antelope, Tooting, London

If you can look past the array of taxidermy animals watching as you go for just one more drink, this characterful gastropub has a rare choice of three open fires. Don’t miss an all-the-trimmings Sunday roast, or settle in for the evening in one of the fireside Chesterfield armchairs. Described as a ‘local’s local’, there’s community spirit aplenty, with weekly quiz nights, live music and sports screenings.

The White Hart, Lydgate, Greater Manchester

With beautiful country views across the rolling Pennines, this former police station, schoolhouse and WW2 base has had a chequered history, but today it offers a cosy rural escape from the great outdoors. From log-burning stoves and coal fires, to tartan carpeting and candlelit tables, this gastropub has ambience in abundance. Choose from refined pub favourites in the Brasserie or visit the Dining Room for finer delights.

Falls of Dochart Inn, Killin, Perthshire

In an idyllic spot overlooking the cascading Falls of Dochart, and unsurprisingly popular with visitors, this traditional family-run inn with a large open fire is full of character and charm. For those in search of traditional Scottish fare, you’ve come to the right place. Expect neeps and tatties, haggis and local cheeses among the hearty menu choices. Sip on malt whisky or a pint of award-winning real ale while wallowing in the warmth of the fire.

The Blue Lion, East Witton, North Yorkshire

This historic coaching inn on the doorstep of the Dales combines log-fuelled cosiness with quality seasonal food and showcases the best of Yorkshire produce. Make yourself comfortable in the traditional real ale bar or head to the more formal candlelit restaurant for gourmet sophistication. Both have roaring fires, giving a homely welcome throughout.

The Wild Duck, Ewen, Gloucestershire

Crimson red walls, an open fire and wood panelling all give this quintessentially Cotswolds Inn unmistakable warmth on a winter’s day. Snuggle up in one of the many nooks and crannies, home-brewed beer in hand, and listen to the sound of crackling logs. Upmarket British classics reign supreme on the menu, with a legendary roast on Sundays.

 

About the author

Abigail Spooner