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The World of the British B&B

There is a very broad spectrum of bedroom accommodation available in the world of hospitality from the over-the-top luxury and indulgence of the Burj Al Arab in Dubai to the humblest of rooms on offer in the poorer regions of the world (this writer remembers a weekend in the Hunza valley of Northwest Pakistan where one bucket of hot water was the ration for the day and the breakfast consisted of a choice between bread and apricot jam or nothing – even so it was a wonderful experience).

The British B&B occupies a space in this spectrum somewhere between the two extremes above but, at its best, can offer some of the greatest hospitality you’ll ever find.  And I’m not thinking of the awful B&B that resides in the childhood memory of all of us of a certain age –a clammy atmosphere due to lack of proper insulation in the walls of a 1960 bungalow, nylon sheets and a sign telling you not to touch the (naff) ornaments.

The best British B&B offers high levels of cleanliness, a hearty breakfast typically made from local ingredients and a genuine and warm welcome.  The best hosts are also incredibly useful sources of information about a place or region and can provide insights and tips that are beyond even the best of guides.  But perhaps more important than anything, we the guest can often feel accepted into the family home and this transcends the economic relationship that underpins the stay.

There are many fine B&Bs throughout Northumberland and we hope that our offering at St Mary’s Inn will make a modest contribution to the county’s stock of quality bedrooms.  And a warm and genuine welcome as well of course!

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TEMPORARY CLOSURE OF ST MARY’S INN, 22/03/2020

Dear Family and Friends of St. Mary’s Inn,

We are absolutely committed to the well-being, health and safety of our guests and staff.

The COVID-19 virus is rapidly spreading throughout the world and each Government is following their own strategy to minimise the impact on their people.

The UK Government have advised most recently that people should avoid pubs, theatres, clubs, and by implication, restaurants, though businesses are left to make their own operational choices based on their unique circumstances.

This is a rapidly changing situation and in order to ensure we put our guests and staff at the front of our considerations we have made the decision to temporarily close the Inn effective from 19:00hrs, Sunday, 22nd March 2020.

We will keep everyone advised as the situation changes and look forward to welcoming you all back at the earliest possible time and in accordance with future Government and WHO advice.

We wish the people of the village of Stannington, our guests who travel so far to see us, and our loyal staff and your families well through this difficult time.

The St. Mary’s Inn team