PUB Spy had not popped into Lower Broadheath for a while so seeing the village shop in the Bell Inn's car park was a little confusing on arrival.

As it was a busy afternoon when Pub Spy dropped in, with an event at the pub and people dropping into the shop, there was no space on the car park so I was forced to park in a nearby street.

Described as a "country pub for all seasons" this establishment is a classic old-fashioned pub, rich in history.

Walking in, the Bell has a traditional feel with lots of old beams everywhere, and a small bar area at the front. It was obvious an event was underway and I suspected it would take a while to be served.

However friendly staff were serving me within minutes. Sadly though, having planned to eat as Pub Spy usually does on these trips, I was informed that due to the event they were not doing food walk ins.

Although disappointed, staff were apologetic about the situation. Needing no excuse I decided to have a pint anyway, and I was impressed as I got a seat at a table in the back room.

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The pint I chose was an Amstel costing £3.90, which seems like the normal price to pay these days. But it had been a tough choice as the bar has a wide selection of drinks, including ales, wines and gins.

Before my visit I had wondered what reception I would get but although I felt a stranger among regulars there still was a welcoming atmosphere.

This is helped too by busy staff able to find time to offer table service.

The watering hole feels almost medieval, with candles lit by a fireplace complete with wood stacked for burning. Seats are the comfortable leather type, and although the green and claret coloured walls are not to my taste, there are interesting pieces to check out including a picture of a knife, a candlestick, a clock, a rocking horse, and landscape paintings.

Considering its age the pub is kept very tidy, and the toilets were clean which is always a good sign of a well run place.

The pub has no background music, no television and no wifi which, with no mobile phone internet I could pick up, means you could feel a little cut off from the modern world. But in another way that is a fantastic thing, as you feel it’s a proper drinker’s bar to have a chat, enjoy a drink and relax.

The village pub has a choice of areas to sit, either at the front bar, near the coffee bar (which I picked) or the function room out the back. There is also loads of seating outside, including in the beer garden which has a large play area for children including a bouncy castle. Lower Broadheath lost its shop after the closure of its previous one in 2017, so to see the villagers won their campaign and have a shop open at a brand-new portable building in the pub’s beer garden, is excellent news.

This also goes to prove that the Bell really is at the heart of the community.

If you are looking for a quiet place to drop in for a pint, and as I have heard the food is excellent too, I would definitely recommend a visit to the Bell.