The excitement is building. Boris will soon hopefully have his hair cut and pubs and restaurants will once again be open for drinks and food outdoors, come rain or shine! With no curfew this time, or the need to buy a ‘substantial meal’ with alcohol hopefully the Scotch Egg debate will end once and for all!
To help you make the most of the imminent openings and to support the wonderful local pubs and restaurants in Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire we’ve been busy finding out opening dates and importantly which gardens have protection from the elements, so you can comfortably weather the inevitable showers!
Whether it’s a midweek lunch with friends, the long overdue date night, or a family roast, the hardest thing to decide is where will you visit first! Do book ahead to avoid disappointment. You can head out either as a group of 6 or two households.
As far as childcare is concerned, it’s back on! The latest update from the government on the key changes effective from April 12th confirms that “all childcare and supervised activities are allowed indoors (as well as outdoors) for all children.” So if you’re looking for flexible local childcare join the local Inloco community for free where you can connect with local families, friends and childcarers to build your own trusted childcare network and find, book and pay for flexible, hassle-free childcare.
Bucks pubs with brilliant outdoors
After months of closure we are excited about the imminent openings across Buckinghamshire and are looking forward to finally enjoying a drink in the pub with friends. Here are some of our local favourites, opening from April 12th.
The Pointer, Brill
The Pointer in picturesque Brill will once again be welcoming guests to eat and drink in their gardens from the April 12th, ahead of fully reopening on May 17th. Children, dogs and muddy boots are all welcome and you can enjoy incredible fresh, local and seasonal food in this very special country pub. It’s been a firm favourite of ours over the years and is well worth a visit for a memorable night out or lunch with friends.
The Harrow, Bishopstone
If guaranteed warmth is in order look no further than The Harrow, Bishopstone. They’ll be open from 14th April Wednesday to Sunday. As well as a pretty cobbled courtyard and patio, they have added a cosy undercover Lodge and bar with heaters and a log burning stove, pictured below. It’s a great place to relax with friends and family while enjoying their full menu and some great drinks. But do book ahead if you want to be undercover!
The Bell, Chearsley
If you’re looking for a lovely traditional country pub with plenty of cover from the elements look no further than The Bell in Chearsley.
Over the winter they have added a pagoda and large outdoor marquee – so you’ll be able to enjoy your visit whatever the weather. The garden at the rear is safely enclosed and has lots of play equipment too so the whole family are sure to enjoy the day.
King’s Head, Haddenham
For another traditional village pub with a large garden try The King’s Head, Haddenham. Jenn and Paul the pubs new owners are delighted to finally be able to open their doors on 12th April.
It will be table service only in the large beer garden and reservations can be made in advance for the outdoor marquee too. The menu is built around a “Pub Tapas” theme with smaller mix and match dishes which are perfect for families, they also offer pizzas and some pub classics.
The Bull and Butcher, Ludgershall
Ludgershall’s The Bull and Butcher are re-opening too on 12th April. They’ll be offering an outside service of fresh, tasty food with a delicious ‘Specials Board’ and pizzas available every day apart from Sunday. James and Emily can’t wait to welcome everyone back and have added 2 marquees filled with tables. In the garden, children are able to enjoy play equipment and there’s even water on tap for four legged friends. If you’d like to eat undercover, please call to book on 01844 238094.
The Seven Stars, Dinton
The Seven Stars is another lovely local village pub opening on April 12th, they too have added outdoor protection in the large pub garden, where you can enjoy home cooked pub meals and drinks with friends.
The Clifden Arms, Worminghall
The Clifden Arms is a fantastic country pub situated in Worminghall, opening again on 12th April with the Bar open 3pm – Late and with a BBQ and Pizza available 5 – 8.30pm. They’ve been busy improving the marquee furnishings and decor, so it’ll be well worth a visit! Call on 01844 338090 to book your table.
Outdoors in Oxfordshire
Whether it’s gastro dining or a pint with friends, the options in Oxfordshire for outdoor drinking and eating are extensive. Here are some of our favourite spots, opening again this April.
The Thatch, Thame
In Thame The Thatch is opening from Monday 12th April for lunch and evening meals. They have a heated stretch tent with pretty twinkly lights so you can make the most of the evening, with some shelter from the weather. The food is fantastic so book ahead to avoid disappointment.
The Waterfront Cafe, Benson
For lunch or a coffee with a view The Waterfront cafe, bar and bistro in Benson, located on the River Thames is a super spot to meet friends. They have a wonderful large decked terrace with some heaters and will be serving drinks, cakes, pastries, baguettes, sourdough toasties and homemade soups.
La Table d’Alix, Great Haseley
La Table d’Alix (The Plough) in Great Haseley has an amazing outdoor space for outdoor dining and drinks. They have canopies in the garden area which looks out onto fields. The food is outstanding and the service from Antoine and Cami makes you never want to eat at home again! We love it. Book early to avoid disappointment.
The Bull, Great Milton
The Bull in Great Milton is a fun family pub, they have a secluded outdoor space where you can enjoy traditional pub food or a drink. Great for kids meals or even better for a relaxed evening out. They support the local community too so why not pay them a visit to say thanks.
The Crazy Bear, Stadhampton
For phenomenal Thai food The Crazy Bear in Stadhampton is reopening on 14th April Wednesday to Sunday for outdoor dining, booking highly recommended. Drinks outdoors in the stunning garden are also possible, you don’t need to book for drinks but tables will be given on a first come, first served basis. From 17th May indoor dining will again be available in both the Thai and English restaurant. Book in advance to avoid disappointment.
Isis Farmbouse, Oxford
A short distance from Oxford on the river front you’ll find the wonderful Isis Farmhouse which is only accessible on foot, by bicycle from the Thames path, or from the river itself. The spacious garden has lots of picnic tables where you can enjoy a drink and take in the view. The garden thankfully is fenced if you are bringing the children. No need to book.
Opening 17th May
We’ll have to wait until mid May for some of our favourite foodie pubs to re-open but we’ve included a few gems in this round-up, so you can book ahead.
The Black Horse, Thame
The Black Horse in Thame (below) has a cosy, but super sophisticated atmosphere and an exquisite seasonal menu – they will open again on 17th May, when indoor and outdoor dining are permitted. Outside there is a pretty courtyard where guests are provided with parasols and blankets so there’s some protection from the elements. The bookings system is now live and you can book tables for food and drinks indoors, or request a table outside.
The Eight Bells, Long Crendon
The Eight Bells, Long Crendon has outside seating in their walled traditional beer garden and a delicious menu including locally sourced produce and stone baked pizzas to keep even the youngest guests content. They’re planning to open on May 17th.
The Black Boy, Oving
The Black Boy in Oving (below) will also be opening again in May when you can enjoy a meal or drinks on their superb patio terrace or in the extensive beer garden with stunning views guaranteed!
The Mole and Chicken, Easington, Long Crendon
The Mole and Chicken is situated in stunning countryside outside Long Crendon. They reopen on May 17th, when you’ll be able to eat inside or enjoy incredible views from the terrace and amazing food.
The Russell Arms, Butlers Cross
If you are looking for an energetic walk followed by a delicious lunch The Russell Arms, Butlers Cross is the place for you. Situated not far from Coombe Hill you can enjoy an exhilarating walk and spectacular views across the Aylesbury Vale, catching a glimpse of the Prime Minister’s country retreat at Chequers. The pub has a fantastic menu, an outside patio area and lawned garden with seating.
The Dinton Hermit, Ford
The recently opened Dinton Hermit in Ford (below) will also open in May when you’ll be able to enjoy outside seating across two separate landscaped patios, one with a new pétanque pitch alongside it.
Childcare at the ready
Inloco has been created by two local mums, Hannah and Nicola, who both live in villages outside Thame. We experienced how tough it can be to find the right support, when you need it, so we created Inloco to help families find the childcare they need to thrive. It’s a new way to connect with a trusted community of local friends, families and childcarers, bringing people together for mutual benefit.
You join, your friends join, and you all invite your trusted sitters – Ta da! Everyone has access to the very best local childcare.
Sign up for free at myinloco.com to join the Inloco community and start enjoying hassle-free childcare today.
You can also find the latest Covid-19 guidance on childcare and what’s allowed at the moment on our website.