The Bell Inn has been a presence on the Great North Road since 1500, if not before, although the building we can see today dates from 1642. Major restoration work was undertaken in the late 1980s, when twenty-two luxury bedrooms and a conference centre were added, but tasteful refurbishment ensured that the Bell Inn retains all the charm and architectural splendour of a traditional English inn. Situated about six miles south of Peterborough and about seventy miles north of London, the Bell was a very important coaching inn until the advent of the motor car. Nowadays it is bypassed by the A1(M) and so it is a tranquil venue undisturbed by noisy traffic, but it is still a very popular hotel.
The village itself gave its name to Stilton cheese, which was made there and popularised by the Bell’s most well-known landlord, Cooper Thornhill, who ran the inn from 1730 until 1759.
The Bell Inn is licensed to hold civil wedding ceremonies and civil partnerships. A Wedding Co-ordinator is on hand and will be happy to give you a tour of the hotel, and to offer help and advice with the planning of your wedding. The hotel prides itself on being able to organise the entire wedding day for the bride and groom, and to accommodate their wishes as closely as possible.
There is a choice of three rooms for your wedding ceremony and reception. The Marlborough Suite was designed to cater for weddings specifically. It can seat up to ninety-five people for a wedding breakfast or 130 for a buffet. It has a dance floor too. This room can be partitioned should you require a more intimate setting for a smaller wedding party.
The Bistro, which has its own bar, will accommodate up to fifty guests, while the Galleried Restaurant is ideal for a more intimate wedding. The Inn itself has many attractive features that make it a perfect setting for your wedding photographs. It has a romantic wishing well and stone courtyard, and it nestles amongst picturesque gardens.
Many years of experience and professionalism combine to make the Bell Inn a very reliable wedding venue; a place where you can count on great service and old-fashioned courtesy, coupled with modern comfort and facilities.
There is an extra dimension to a place of such antiquity, for the Bell has played host to some of history’s most famous personalities, among them Lord Byron and the great Duke of Marlborough. Dick Turpin the highwayman is reputed to have holed up at the Bell for nine weeks while evading the law, and some of Cromwell’s troops visited the hostelry during the English Civil War.
The Bell’s excellent reputation has made it a popular inn for centuries and it continues to attract colourful characters to this day, be they actors, rock stars, authors or politicians. Likewise, it is a much sought-after location for couples wanting a wedding venue that combines traditional elegance and atmosphere with modern comfort.