In 2008, The George and Dragon – then a rather shabby old village tavern – was in desperate need of a face-lift. It was taken over by Charles Lowther and his mother, Caroline, Countess of Lonsdale who carried out a sensitive and intelligent restoration.
Rather than transforming the whole of the ground floor into a restaurant, as so many pubs-with-rooms nowadays do, they kept the bar as its focal point and allowed for a virtually uninterrupted view all the way to the far side of the slate-floored, duck-egg blue panelled restaurant. Come here for lunch, dinner or to while away the time amongst regulars with a pint of local ale.
Bedrooms are small, homely, some a little awkwardly shaped but redeemed by luxury bath products and comfortable beds. If you’re looking for an affordable base from which to explore the Lake District, look no further. Otherwise, if you’re travelling between Northern and Southern England, the George and Dragon is a great place to break journeys.
As for the food: it’s tasty, uncomplicated and locally sourced. Venison and beef features prominently and most of their produce comes directly from the Lowther Estate. Charles breeds Beef Shorthorn – his prize winning specimens are celebrated in a collage of photographs by the bar.
A true celebration of country life. Guests are taken hunting by the Estate’s head stalker and there are one or two good fishing spots nearby. The George and Dragon is the little sister of Askham Hall, where Charles Lowther spent his childhood.