The Horse Guards Inn Pub with rooms in Tillington, West Sussex

Prices from:
£85 per night

David Hancock says:

  • Village setting close to South Downs
  • Imaginative food, daily menus
  • Passion for local/home-grown produce
  • Happy, friendly atmosphere
  • Gorgeous garden; veg & chickens
  • Restful, unpretentious accommodation
  • A wonderful inn – a special escape

Sticky FingersMuddy PawsGood for WalkingOutdoor PursuitsCandlelitVisit a Stately Pile90 Minutes from LondonPrivate Dining

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Call this inn 01798 849270

Overview

The Horse Guards Inn Tillington, West Sussex, GU28 9AF

The personal touch

Set in the heart of the South Downs National Park, with rolling views down the Rother Valley, the 350-year-old Horse Guards Inn Tillington acquired its current name in the 1840s, when members of the household cavalry would frequent the place, while their horses rested on grass in the grounds of the Petworth Estate. These days the pub is a magnet for locals and foodies alike, and it’s always bursting at the seams. Inside, it’s a topsy-turvy, quirky sort of place with original beams, low ceilings, cottage windows and rugs strewn on wooden floors. On one level, you can sit in the window seats overlooking the village street below; on another there’s a comfy sofa and piano for relaxed pints and singalongs, while the lower floor has a vast blackboard, listing all the pub’s local suppliers next to a glowing wood-burning stove. In winter, you can roast chestnuts foraged from Petworth Park on one of the open log fires and play board games at the bar; on sunnier days, sit on straw-bale seats in the hidden garden or have lunch at shaded tables beside the herbs and vegetables you’ll find on your plate.

Sticky fingers

Children welcome throughout the pub and in the rooms.

Muddy paws

Dogs are welcome throughout the pub and there are dog biscuits on the bar. No dogs in the pub bedrooms, but they are allowed in the cottage (£10 surcharge) where a dog bed is supplied.

Alfresco

Outside is a lovely, peaceful garden which acts as a quirky extension of the pub in good weather. At the far end, the pub’s chickens cluck as guests eat alfresco at worn wooden benches and white metal tables, surrounded by flowerbeds. There’s also a useful outside loo.

What’s the Damage?
2 double £85 to £140; cottage prices on request.

What Else?

  • All credit cards taken (except Amex)
  • Private dining facilities
  • Alfresco dining
  • Limited disabled access to bar only
  • Parking along the village street

Gongs
AA 4 Star Inn & 1 Rosette; Michelin; Waitrose Good Food Guide; Good Pub Guide Sussex Dining Pub Of The Year

Sleep

The Horse Guards Inn Tillington, West Sussex, GU28 9AF

Do not disturb

There are two rooms above the pub (one twin and one double), plus a cottage at the other side of the building. Up a narrow staircase, the pub rooms feel fresh, airy and cosy with a touch of country-chic – think soft, restful colours (mushroom and off-white), distressed, white-painted headboards and crisp white sheets, plus floral scatter cushions and views of the garden from the windows. In short, very peaceful little bolt holes. The cottage also has a sofa bed (two kiddies or one adult) at additional cost of £30 per person- you can also bring your dog here (£10 surcharge).

Creature comforts

Artful Teasing toiletries; Home-baked biscotti.

Gadgets

This is a place to escape gadgets!

What’s for Breakfast?

Homemade granola, fresh fruit, juices, toast and homemade preserves; cinnamon French toast and pomegranate syrup; organic porridge; smoked salmon and scrambled eggs with toasted home-baked bread; natural yoghurt, dried fruit, nuts and seeds with South Downs honey; full English breakfast – eggs from the inn’s own chickens, smoked bacon, chipolatas, black pudding, grilled tomato, mushrooms. Note: if guests would like more than one course, an additional £5.50 applies.

What’s the Damage?
2 double £85 to £140; cottage prices on request.

What Else?

  • All credit cards taken (except Amex)
  • Private dining facilities
  • Alfresco dining
  • Limited disabled access to bar only
  • Parking along the village street

Gongs
AA 4 Star Inn & 1 Rosette; Michelin; Waitrose Good Food Guide; Good Pub Guide Sussex Dining Pub Of The Year

Eat & Drink

The Horse Guards Inn Tillington, West Sussex, GU28 9AF

Mastering the menu

“Our menu is small and seasonal”, say Sam & Misha, the owners of this food-loving inn. They’re passionate about locally sourced ingredients (just look at the blackboard listing all their suppliers), and they run a productive kitchen – baking bread, making ice creams, smoking fish and producing preserves for sale over the bar. They also have a thriving vegetable patch, keep chickens and do a bit of foraging in the nearby countryside. The result is a short, ever-changing repertoire that runs with the calendar: come here in springtime and you might be offered a warm salad of smoked sprats with sausage, beetroot, chicory and horseradish cream followed by saddle of new season’s South Downs lamb with butterbeans, leeks and marjoram; turn up in winter and it might be local game terrine with rowan jelly ahead of venison haunch with beetroot gratin, baby onions, kale and red wine sauce. The kitchen is also big on all things ‘green’: they recycle glass, cardboard, tins and plastic, turn vegetable peelings into compost, collect rainwater for the garden and encourage locals to bring in their unwanted home-grown produce.

On the menu

Gazpacho of local heritage tomatoes
South Downs venison carpaccio, artichokes and Sussex Parmesan
Pan-fried hake, Jersey Royals, sea kale, capers and lemon butter

Organic Sussex rose veal fillet, wild mushrooms, spinach, potato and cauliflower cheese gratin

Homemade ricotta, vanilla-roast greengages, South Downs honey and pistachios

Sunday Roasts

Roast beef, lamb and pork with all the trimmings and vegetables (from £15.50)

Time to eat

Breakfast: 8.30am – 10am
Lunch: 12 noon – 2.30pm (3pm Saturday; 3.30pm Sunday – two sittings)
Dinner: 6.30pm – 9pm (6.30pm-9pm Friday & Saturday)

Local, local, local

Fruit and vegetables – Secretts Farm, Milford (www.secretts.co.uk); Buddington Farm, Midhurst; Spring Garden Nursery, Washington; Blackthorns Nursery, Pulborough… and the pub garden
Beef, lamb and pork – Rother Valley Organics, Petersfield (www.rothervalleyorgnaics.com)
Rose veal – Rudgwick Organic, Canfields Farm (www.rudgwickorganic.co.uk)
Game – South Downs Venison, Petworth (www.southdownsvenison.co.uk)
Free-range chickens and ducks – Lodge Farm, Godalming
Seafood – Brighton and Newhaven fishing fleet
Smoked fish – Springs Smoked Salmon (www.springssmokedsalmon.co.uk)and the pub’s own smoker
Flour – Weald & Downland Open Air Museum Mill, Singleton (www.wealddown.co.uk)
Cheese – Norbury Farm Park, Dorking (www.norburyblue.co.uk); Golden Cross Cheese. Lewes (www.goldencrosscheese.co.uk); High Weald Dairy, Haywards Heath (www.highwealddairy.co.uk)
Butter – South Downs Butter, Arlington
Honey – Paynes Southdown Bee Farms, Hassocks (www.paynesbeefarms.co.uk)
Sparkling wine – Upperton Vineyard, Tillington (www.uppertonvineyards.co.uk)
Farm juices – Chegworth Valley (www.chegworthvalley.com)
Real ales – Harveys, Lewes (www.harveys.org.uk); Langham Brewery, Petworth (www.langhambrewery.co.uk); Hammerpot Brewery, Arundel (www.hammerpot-brewery.co.uk)

Behind the bar

The inn’s commitment to all things local also shows up in the bar, with Sussex ales always on the pumps: Harveys Sussex Best Bitter, Langham’s Sundowner and Shooting Star from Hammerpot in Arundel are typical brews for the real ale brigade. The 40-strong wine list includes sparkling fizz from nearby Upperton Vineyard in Tillington and the owners also make their own sloe gin. Seasonal specials are worth a punt too, especially the ‘winter warmer’ – a mix of spiced apple juice and cider, served warm with cinnamon, star anise and cloves. Bloody Marys, cocktails, shots and medicinal revitalisers complete the alcoholic package. Otherwise, stay teetotal with farm juices from Chegworth Valley.

Bar snacks

Homemade spicy and dry-roasted nuts, pork scratchings, crisps etc

Time at the bar

12 noon – 12 midnight

What’s the Damage?
2 double £85 to £140; cottage prices on request.

What Else?

  • All credit cards taken (except Amex)
  • Private dining facilities
  • Alfresco dining
  • Limited disabled access to bar only
  • Parking along the village street

Gongs
AA 4 Star Inn & 1 Rosette; Michelin; Waitrose Good Food Guide; Good Pub Guide Sussex Dining Pub Of The Year

Food Trail

Take it back home
Tour the brewery that brewed your favourite pint, visit the shop on the farm that reared your delicious Sunday roast beef, and seek out the roadside stalls selling the local crab and samphire on the inn’s menu, the Food Trail features the local artisan producers and suppliers where you can buy to enjoy at home.

Change of scenery
Looking for a pub for lunch following a country walk, a different venue for dinner, or a good café for coffee, light lunch or afternoon tea, then the best in the area are listed below. If you find a new and exciting eatery in the area that’s worthy of a mention on the Food Trail, then please to do let us know – gabrielle@innplaces.co.uk.

1 Inn Location - The Horse Guards Inn

2

Langham Brewery, The Granary, Langham Lane, Lodsworth GU28 9BU

Langham Brewery is an award-winning independent brewery producing cask-conditioned real ale. For craft ale lovers, who want to know more about it, a guided tour of the 10 barrel steam-powered brewery is a perfect treat. Groups of all sizes are welcome, so please call the brewery to book: 01798 860861. Friday night and Saturday tours are particularly popular!

3

Cowdray Farm Shop and Cafe, Easebourne GU29 0AJ

The Cowdray Farm Shop and Cafe, is the hub of the 16,500 acre Cowdray Estate set in the South Downs. The shop is famous for its holistically reared lamb, beef and vension and sale of local produce. The cafe's outstanding food - from lunch to afternoon tea - is all homemade using traditional artisan techniques. The Farm Shop and cafe are open every day, 9am - 5pm (please check website)

4

Upperton Vineyard, Tillington GU28 0RD

This family run vineyard is dedicated to making magnificent English sparkling wine, using traditional methods. Tours and tastings run May to September on Fridays and Saturdays at 2pm (please check website). Guests are treated to spectacular views of the South Downs from the vineyard's viewing platform as well as sampling some of the finest British sparkling wine.

5

Hungry Guest, Petworth GU28 0AG

The Hungry Guest's founder, Danish-born Master Baker Troels Bendix, first opened his Petworth cafe and shop to feed hungry locals with freshly baked treats. Now his superb establishment has expanded to include a butchery and cheese room. For lunch, afternoon tea or shopping it's a treat and worth stopping off for in this pretty market town

6

Lurgashall Vineyard Shop & Tea Room, Lurgashall GU28 9HA

Nestled beneath Blackdown Hill, this quirky little shop stocks a full range of Lurgashall Vineyard's traditional English country wines, meads, liqueurs and other goodies too. In the winery's 17th century barn local products are for sale and visitors can sample wines with the help of knowledgeable staff. The barn's cafe serves coffees, teas and cakes including delicious cream teas, which can be enjoyed inside or outside on benches in the courtyard.

7

The Forge Shop and Cafe, Reynolds Lane, Slindon BN18 0QT

The redundant Forge building in pretty Slindon village has now been restored and extended providing a community shop selling local produce. The cafe serves their own blend of coffee, cakes, light lunches including their legendary sausage rolls, home-made soup and homemade ham. With a full licence and local beers for sale it's a perfect stop off for walkers and cyclists.

9

Goodwood Home Farm Shop & Café, Home Farm House, Goodwood, Chichester PO18 0QF

Set at the heart of the 12,000 acre Sussex estate, Goodwood Home Farm is the largest lowland organic farm in the UK. The Farm achieved full organic status in 2004 and boasts the first dairy herd in the UK to be totally organically fed. The farm shop sells estate game, organic beef, lamb, pork and dairy including Goodwood cheese, ales and lager.

10

Zest for Taste, 36 East Street, Chichester PO19 1HS

This unique little shop is passionate about good food, colourful ceramics, kitchenware and olive oils! For sale, is a wide variety of olives, spices, marinades, sauces and dips which visitors can try. Their ‘Tap’ system allows customers to fill their own containers with favourite premium olive oils and balsamic vinegars.

11

Montezuma Chocolate, 29 East Street, Chichester PO19 1HS

Local couple Helen and Simon founded Montezuma's, hand making their luxury chocolate bars, truffles and gifts with one little machine. Now Montezuma's is Britain's leading and most innovative luxury chocolate maker. Here, at their first shop in Chichester, the family love affair with chocolate continues…. to be shared!

12

The Duke of Cumberland, Henley, Fernhurst, West Sussex GU27 3HQ

Tricky to locate, this unspoilt 15th-century country pub, its brick and stone walls covered with roses and wisteria, is well worth the effort to find. Persevere for tiny rustic bars, local ales, a swish dining extension and decking, top-notch pub food cooked by chef-owner Simon Goodman, and a fantastic terraced garden with far-reaching views across the Sussex Weald.

Out & About

1 Inn Location - The Horse Guards Inn

Activities

2

Chichester Festival Theatre PO19 6AP

One of Britain’s most prestigious provincial theatres, and an instantly recognisable landmark in Chichester, the hexagonal-shaped, 1,300-seat theatre is one of the largest in southern England. Recently restored and attracting famous acting talent, it’s the perfect place to see top quality productions before they head to the West End. Set in large grounds, theatre lovers can bring picnics in summer or visit the new bars and restaurant.

3

West Wittering Beach PO20 8AJ

The highest water quality and excellent facilities have made West Wittering, south-west of Chichester, one of the premier Blue Flag beaches in the country. This stretch of coast is popular with wind and kite surfers and is an obvious venue for lots of exhilarating recreational activity.

4

Cowdray Park Polo, Midhurst GU29 0AQ

Cowdray Park is recognised worldwide as the Home of British Polo. Set in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty within Viscount Cowdray's 16,500 acre estate, the game of polo has been played at Cowdray for nearly a century. On summer afternoons it's a relaxed way to an enjoy an exciting game in a wonderful setting.

5

Chichester Harbour Water Tours PO20 7AW

There are boat trips four times a day during the high season. Taking to the water on this stretch of the coast is a great way to discover one of Britain's great natural harbours and learn all about its wildlife.

Shopping

16

Petworth - Antique Shops GU28 0AB

Known as the 'Antiques Centre of the South', Petworth has a long history of being at the heart of antique dealing. This beautiful market town has probably more antique shops than any other in the south of England. Within half a mile radius there are 24 antique and interior design shops to make your mouth water.

17

Artful Teasing, Lombard Street, Petworth GU28 0AG

A family-run business selling a gorgeous range of perfumes and fragrances. Inspired by the West Sussex countryside, they use natural essential oils in all their paraben-free products and use organic ingredients where possible. Owner Colin formulates all the own-brands and wife Kate creates the products' perfumes.

19

Artichoke, Rumbolds Hill, Midhurst GU29 9DA

Artichoke is an independent rustic gift and hand-painted furniture shop based in Midhurst, on the South Downs. Expect an eclectic range of home accessories among many other items.

20

Zest for Taste, 36 East Street, Chichester PO19 1HS

This unique little shop is passionate about good food, colourful ceramics, kitchenware and olive oils! For sale, is a wide variety of olives, spices, marinades, sauces and dips which visitors can try. Their ‘Tap’ system allows customers to fill their own containers with favourite premium olive oils and balsamic vinegars

21

Sparks Yard General Store, Tarrant Street, Arundel BN18 9DJ

Opened in 2003 by Holly Heggadon, whose dream was to have specialist gift shop. Now she’s expanded from the ground floor of this Grade II listed Victorian warehouse and has filled the upper levels with a cook shop, home store, coffee bar and, recently, ‘The Loft’, an eatery offering great burgers and amazing roof top views.

22

Arundel Bridge Antiques BN18 9AB

Arundel’s longest running and atmospheric antique centre is where you’ll find a mesmerising selection of quality antiques, including stalls dealing in items of French furniture, vintage clothing as well as a room dedicated to vintage cameras where they also do repairs and source old film.

Places to visit

7

Fishbourne Roman Palace PO19 3QR

Located near Chichester, Fishbourne Roman Palace was built in the 1st century AD, about 30 years of the Roman conquest of Britain. Visitors get the chance to see the largest collection of mosaics in situ in the country, notably the perfectly preserved dolphin mosaic in the north wing.

9

Uppark House, South HartingGU31 5QR

Looking at Uppark House today, it's hard to believe that this imposing Georgian building was badly damaged by fire in the 1980s. The restored National Trust house, near Petersfield, was the childhood home of HG Wells - his mother was in service here.

10

West Dean Gardens PO18 0QZ

These award-winning gardens feature a Victorian Walled Kitchen Garden, Sunken Garden, Orchards and circular walk set in beautiful parkland. Delicious homemade goodies can be eaten in the Garden's restaurant. Look out for courses and festivals including the summer Chilli Fiesta in August, celebrating over 250 chilli varieties!

11

Petworth House GU28 0AE

Petworth's magnificent late 17th-century country house, set in a 700-acre deer park, is home to The National Trust's finest collection of pictures with numerous works by Turner, Van Dyck, Reynolds and Blake. The servants' quarters contain fascinating kitchens and outside, the grounds, which can be enjoyed by walkers, were landscaped by 'Capability' Brown and immortalised in Turner's paintings.

12

Amberley Working Museum BN18 9LT

Tucked away in an old disused chalk pit, this museum is dedicated to the industrial heritage of the South East. Exhibits include a narrow-gauge railway, telecommunications hall, electricity hall and printing workshop. A blacksmith and potter work onsite. Outside the quarry has been reclaimed by wild flowers including orchids and birds such as peregrine falcons swoop over the quarry face.

13

Arundel Castle, Arundel BN18 9AB

One of the region's most picturesque towns, Arundel is packed with handsome buildings and historic landmarks. Top of the list here is Arundel Castle, the principal home of the Dukes of Norfolk. Within its great walls lie countless treasures, including tapestries, clocks and portraits by Van Dyck, Gainsborough and Reynolds.

14

Arundel Wetland Centre, Arundel BN18 9PB

Arundel Wetland Centre, set in ancient woodlands near the River Arun, is home to kingfishers, water voles, hundreds of British wildfowl and migrating wild birds. Visitors can enjoy 'Safaris' on quiet, electric boats everyday (weather permitting) or walk amongst ancient reed beds with well positioned hides. The Centre's cafe, is the perfect place to bird watch over lunch!

15

Cowdray Park Polo, Midhurst GU29 0AQ

Cowdray Park is recognized worldwide as the Home of British Polo. Set in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty within Viscount Cowdray's 16,500 acre estate, the game of polo has been played at Cowdray for nearly a century. On summer afternoons it's a relaxed way to an enjoy an exciting game in a wonderful setting.

23

Goodwood, Chichester PO18 0PX

Goodwood House is the beautiful country seat of the Dukes of Richmond. It was built as one of the finest sporting estates and still is today – for those who like speed! The grounds host Goodwood’s Festival of Speed and ‘Revival’ for classic cars. Nearby, in stunning countryside, the Racecourse is popular for horse racing all year round, in particular ‘Glorious Goodwood’ in summer. The airfield attracts proficient and aspiring aviators with flying lessons available.

Events

6

Petworth Festival GU28 0AB

The Petworth Festival is a summer festival of music and the arts, set in the historic market town of Petworth. Over two-weeks in July the town comes alive with a high quality programme of classical concerts and recitals, chamber music, song, jazz, cabaret, theatre, comedy, visual arts, talks and walks in and around Petworth.

Walking

www.southdowns.gov.uk/enjoy/explore/walking
The South Downs Way is one of 15 National Trails in England and Wales and lies entirely within the South Downs
National Park. Just south of The Horse Guards, the trail offers some of the loveliest countryside in Britain, including ancient Weald woodland and rolling farmland. By horse, foot or cycle – nature lovers will enjoy the diverse bird and wildlife along the way.

Getting there

Location, Location, Location

By Road
Tillington is signposted just off the A272, between Midhurst and Petworth. The inn is in the centre of the village.

By Rail
The nearest train station is Pulborough (just over 6 miles) – 1 hour 20 minutes from London Victoria.

Address:

Upperton Road,, Tillington, West Sussex, GU28 9AF

Make booking enquiry

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