Masons Arms in Branscombe named in top five pubs by Times

The Mason Arms in Branscombe has been named number five in a poll by The Times.

The Mason Arms in Branscombe has been named number five in a poll by The Times. - Credit: Archant

The Masons Arms in Branscombe has claimed fifth spot in a national newspaper poll.

The Times said the establishment, which is owned by St Austell Brewery, is one of the top 25 countryside pubs with walks as it sits in ‘one of the most picturesque villages in the country’.

Critic James Ellis said that the village pub provides visitors with ‘walks aplenty’ along Branscombe’s cliffs, the South West Coastal Footpath and the Jurassic Coast.

The Branscombe public house came behind pubs in Bristol, Ceredigion, Northumberland.

The Plowden Arms, in Henley-on-Thames claimed the top spot in the countdown.

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St Austell Brewery’s estate director, Adam Luck, praised the work of staff and publicans Alison and Simon Ede.

Mr Luck said: “A pub is the sum of all of its parts - great location, great atmosphere, great products and service and, of course, great support for and by its local community.

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“The Masons Arms has all of these, thanks to Simon and Alison. There’s always a warm welcome for visitors to this beautiful stretch of our coastline and plenty going on at the pub to make people come back for more.”

The establishment dates back to the 1360s as an ancient cider house. The 12th century building was often frequented by local masons who were contracted to work on Exeter Cathedral.

Alison and Simon took over as publicans in 2013 and carried out a major refurbishment to show what the pub had to offer.

Simon said: “We felt at home here as soon as we arrived at the Masons and we’ve always worked hard so that others can share that feeling.

“It’s the beating heart of the local community, a fantastic launching pad for those holidaying in the local area and we are lucky enough that our reputation for serving great food means we have people who travel from far and wide whenever we put on a new menu.”

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