Kersey and the immediate area
We’ve put together some local walks that we’ve enjoyed ourselves together with pubs that can be part of these walks. We also supply an Ordnance Survey (Explorertm 196) map of local walks for guest to make their own plans. Pubs and restaurants local to Kersey that can be reached in between five to ten minutes by car are also shown.
Kersey to Hadleigh – A beautiful walk that avoids main roads (apart from crossing the Hadleigh bypass) with some very long-reaching views, the golden stubble fields makes it look as though a golden carpet has been laid across hundreds of acres of land. The walk takes in the region of forty minutes to Hadleigh High Street from Primrose cottage. (Along the way, another footpath branches off to ‘The Donkey’ restaurant/pub, this is about 20 minutes from Kersey). Hadleigh has a magnificent church and Guildhall with a small fresh vegetable market too. A market town that has a very good variety of individual shops, pubs, coffee shops, a large specialist kitchen shop, a delicatessen, two local garages and a great cooking school too. Undoubtedly, one of its crowning commercial glories is known as Partridges a large hardware shop selling anything from SINGLE screws in paper bags to large agricultural machinery – and along the way everything one would need for the garden, plumbing, decorating or kitchen too – how many shops like this exist at all anywhere these days?
Kersey to Chelsworth – A mixture of walking across undulating fields and down very minor country roads, this walk will take you around 1½ hours to reach Chelsworth, A small gem, Chelsworth is a village with an exceptionally pretty centre that takes one over the River Brett by a picture-postcard small bridge surrounded by a mown meadow that must be one of the best places in the area to have a picnic.
Suggestions to eat and drink in Kersey
Apologies to those we haven’t included in the listings, the list is not definitive but we have included those we have visited to date, more will be added.
Local Pubs & Restaurants within 3-10 minutes by car
|We begin with our local – The Kersey Bell (01473 823229) that is less than five minutes amble from Primrose Cottage. Very heavily timbered, this lovely pub offers local ales and a good selection of pub food too ‘Daily Specials’ are generally available – a great asset to Kersey.|
|The White Horse at Edwarstone(01787 211211)– This pub also has a micro-brewery on site, with six real ales always being available the pub also holds beer festivals throughout the year.|
|The Lindsey (Red) Rose (01449 741 424) – A pub for over 500 years, excellent food and real ale is served Wednesday through to Sunday evening. Real fires and a great atmosphere, Booking is advised as it can get deservedly very busy. Takes around 8 minutes by car, one hour or so walking.|
|Hollow Trees Farm Shop – Semer (01449 741247) this wonderful farm shop is one of the very best and is just five minutes drive from Kersey. There is an entertaining ‘Farm Trail’ and a coffee shop that serves home produced fayre. Hollow Trees covers 140 acres and is a mixed farm that has developed its shop carefully. Only local produce of excellent quality is sold. .|
|The Swan, Monks Eleigh (01449 763163) – Very comfortable, welcoming and stylish pub/restaurant, is easily found on the main street in the Lavenham Direction – about 10 minutes by car. Excellent locally sourced ingredients, it is a super place to eat, drink or visit.|
|The Crown, Bildeston (01449 740510)- Superb refurbishment and re-building, One of the very best restaurants and pubs in the area, the Crown won the Silver Award in National Tourism Awards 2009, excellent bar menu, real ale too and is very highly recommended|
|The Fox and Hounds at Groton. (01787 210 474) –the pub has been credited with pioneering ‘chicken in basket’ meals in Suffolk (1964) whilst Groton’s John Winthrop was appointed the first governor of Massachusetts
in 1631. Great atmosphere, good pub food, beautiful views of countryside
Places to visit near and further afield
|Hintlesham Hall (01473 652334) – A beautiful Hall of Tudor origins between Kersey and Ipswich. Another long-standing special place to visit, it began as a restaurant under Robert Carrier and is still individually owned, Special.Hadleigh – just six minutes by car, Hadleigh offers a wide variety of pubs that offer good food, a friendly coffee shop, Chinese and Indian restaurants together with a fish and chip shop. Free car parking is available all day long but at three hour sessions just change car parks after that.By car within 10-18 minutes from KerseyLavenham – The best preserved mediaeval village in England – can be reached in under twenty minutes from Kersey and in our opinion is a must to visit. The church in Lavehham is more like a small cathedral and is perhaps the finest example of a ‘Suffolk wool church’ i.e. funded by the wool trade that generated such great wealth in the Middle Ages. The village has a selection of very good pubs, restaurants and tearooms, a ‘proper’ butcher (with a huge selection of sausages) and antique shops. The Guildhall and its square boasts an exceptional restaurant – ‘The Great House’ (01787 247431) that is French owned and run. It won the 2009 East of England Best Restaurant of the Year and booking is essential. Also in the square is the Angel Hotel (01787 247388). This is a beautifully beamed building full of character, fires in winter, a selection of local ale and with a good restaurant and bar food too.The Cock Inn– Brent Eleigh (01787 247371) – one of the very few traditional pubs left, CAMRA says: ’Thatched building. An absolute gem!’ If you wish to play games such as shove ha’penny and pitch penny, visit this pub. Food is also available and music is offered once a month. A simply great place!|
|Long Melford – the Antiques Village. Around 20 minutes to the west of Kersey and due south of Bury St. Edmunds, this village has more antiques for sale than anywhere else in Suffolk. The very heavily timbered historic Bull hotel, built in 1450 is the centrepiece of the longest village high street in England. The Bull offers a very good bar & restaurant menu. Two independent restaurants, known as Scutchers(01787 310200) and the Black Lion pub/restaurant (01787 312356) are for special occasions. Both have received prestigious culinary awards and are very highly recommended. In addition, there are also a host of very good value-for-money pubs serving good bar food from which to choose and a choice of tearooms too, this is one village where you’ll never go hungry!Kentwell Hall www.kentwell.co.uk is a simply wonderfully restored moated Tudor Mansion close to Long Melford’s village green and church that has almost all year attractions including accurate Tudor re-enactments in ‘High Summer’ – mid June to mid July but do first check on their website. Local people are dressed in period costume and converse as if the clock really had been turned back to 1535!Long Melford also has another fine Tudor house to visit –Melford Hall (01787880286) which is opposite the village green and close to Kentwell Hall has been the home of the Hyde Parker family, lords of the manor of Melford since 1786, though the house itself is now owned by the National Trust. Both the house and gardens are very well maintained and it is very unusual to be able to visit two such fine Tudor mansions in a small village within a short walking distance of each other – both different, both special.Bury St. Edmunds is the capital of West Suffolk and is just 30 minutes from Kersey, this is ‘Suffolk’s Floral Town’ . Thankfully spared a proposed huge London overspill plan in the 1960s – Bury is still a market town and has been able to retain its country ‘small town character’. It is also home to Greene King one of the UKs very best brewers that boasts a very good brewery museum too. Bury is a floral delight in the summer when it abounds with hanging baskets just about everywhere they can be put! The area around the Cathedral (with its proud new ‘Millennium’ spire) has the most interesting architecture and this includes Angel Hill with some bijou shops and restaurants. Just the other side of the road, the Abbey Gardens can be found and these alone are worth visiting. For theatre lovers, Bury’s Theatre Royal (01284 769505) is extremely popular and thoroughly recommended – perhaps take a pre-theatre drink at ‘The Nutshell’ argued to be Britain’s smallest pub.|