Sexcentenary tours at The Mermaid


The Mermaid Inn has launched a season of internal tours to coincide with the 600th anniversary of the hotel’s rebuilding.

The Mermaid’s managing director and joint owner Judith Blincow, who has been part of The Mermaid for 36 years, is running monthly tours of the building which was rebuilt in 1420. Judith is a mine of fascinating information about the hotel and its history, and is brimming with tales of the hotel’s guests, human and otherwise.

Anecdotes about William Shakespeare and the Queen Mother, and tantalizing snippets of information about who stayed where and what happened in which rooms, are told by someone whose heart is part of the hotel – The Mermaid is in Judith’s DNA.

Glimpses, gossip and guesses of what might have occurred make for a tantalizing hour. Intrigue and speculation about rooms supposed to be haunted, or which may have had uninvited visitors, add to the whole experience.

The cellars are as sinister as you would expect cellars to be. Some of the stairs may be crooked but the walls are hung with enough art to satisfy any aesthete. And how amazing to hear that only two months ago a room that no-one seemed to know about was discovered when a coat hook looked to be upside down!

The tours are held on the last Sunday of each month at 4pm and 5pm. To book a tour place contact the hotel on 01797 223065 or email There is no charge but donations to the National Deaf Children’s Society are appreciated.

Further details about the hotel can be found on the website.

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