Hotel of the Week: Slow down. Taste the good life

Andy Lynes
Sunday 13 July 2008 00:00

Informed foodies have long known there's more to the historic market town of Ludlow than its well-preserved Norman castle. It's also home to the UK headquarters of the Slow Food movement and one of the UK's leading annual food and drink festivals. Not bad going for a town with a population of just over 10,000.

Staying in Fishmore Hall, a former school near the town centre, means that you can enjoy its gastronomic restaurant within reach of your bed. And the acclaimed La Bécasse and Michelin-starred Mr Underhills are on your doorstep, too.

Each of the 15 good-sized rooms has been individually designed in a pleasingly modern style and most have views. Room 7 is so generously proportioned that they decided to install a bath big enough for two in the bedroom/lounge. A walk-in shower leaves you on show to your partner, who might well be lounging on the enormous and very comfortable Hypnos bed watching the flat-screen TV or checking email via the complimentary broadband.

The shades-of-beige dining room makes an elegant setting for chef Marc Hardiman's refined cooking. The seven-course Taste of the Marches menu showcases local produce with imaginative dishes such as braised pig's cheek, sweet and sour celeriac and crispy ear. Wine lovers will appreciate the enthusiastic recommendations from the restaurant manager.

Room 1 has been modified for guests with disabilities. There are ramped entrances and the hotel's ground-floor facilities are wheelchair friendly. Children are welcome, with additional roll-up beds available on request. Small pets are allowed.

A two-night Summer Getaway costs £320 for two, including dinner, bed and breakfast and afternoon tea on the first night, and a 50 per cent discount on the b&b rate for the second night, plus free entry to Ludlow Castle, Stokesay Castle or Berrington Hall. Available until 1 September.

Fishmore Hall, Fishmore Road, Ludlow, Shropshire, SY8 3DP (01584 875148;

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