Neil Sowerby admires a hotel that’s more than just a Steve Coogan shrine
ABOVE is the room they all ask for when booking at Hipping Hall. It may be seven years since the first series of The Trip on BBC but fans still fancy sleeping where Steve Coogan did on that foodie road trip. After a recent refurb, though, it is subtly changed.
Andrew Wildsmith, owner of the hotel near Kirkby Lonsdale, has worked with renowned interior designer James Mackie to create a homage to its native landscape.
The curtains, cushions and throws have been lovingly crafted using three bespoke Pendle Tweeds created by Benjamin Thornber & Sons, Clitheroe. The headboards have been made by Woodhutch of Burrow; the curtain poles and ironmongery hand crafted by Albion Ironworks of Lancaster, reflecting Hipping’s origins as a smithy all those years ago.
But the groundbreaking touch is the new wall decoration. Two Settle-based artists Pip Seymour and Rebecca Wallace have created special paint pigments making use of local minerals with a hint of sparkle added, in the form of recycled wine bottles from Hipping’s cellars.
This look has been applied across the bedrooms in the original main house. Farrow & Ball and Cole & Son still rule the roost in the Old Stables block, recently transformed into five new gorgeous dog-friendly bedrooms/suites (our verdict).
Fans still fancy sleeping where Steve Coogan did on The Trip. After a recent refurb, though, it is subtly changed.
The three AA rosette 15th century, tapestry-hung dining hall, complete with ‘minstrel’s gallery’, remains Hipping’s centrepiece, showcasing the talents of young chef Oli Martin. Ironically when Coogan and co-star Rob Bryson were filming the Hipping leg of The Trip the dining room was too dark to film in without artificial light, so the episode focus dining scene was shot in the conservatory.
Director Michael Winterbottom and his two querulous, midlife crisis battling stars went on to film further series in Spain and Italy but it never got better than at those first six glorious north west hotel/restaurant stop-offs. The new look Hipping surely deserves its place in a remake Return Trip.
Hipping Hall, Cowan Bridge, Kirkby Lonsdale, LA6 277. 015242 71187.
Five AA stars. 10 rooms in the main house. The Old Stables houses a further five bedrooms. From £189 for B&B, or £269 for a five course dinner (excluding wine), B&B, based on two people sharing. The whole Old Stables block can be booked at a house party rate of £2,335 based on three course dinner and breakfast for 10 guests.
Restaurant open seven days a week for dinner; lunch Sat and Sun only. A three course lunch costs £29.50 (six course tasting menu £39.50); dinner, three courses a la carte, is £55 with a seven course tasting menu at £65. Matching wines for either tasting menu an additional £39.50 per person.