The Pear Tree at Purton is one of the South West’s most respected family run hotels.
In a former life it was the vicarage for the village of Purton which is on the border of Wiltshire and the Cotswolds. It’s a family-run hotel and offers fine dining as well as fabulous accommodation with 17 bedrooms.
The oldest part of the building is the fireplace in the library which has been dated to 1430 when King Henry VI was the monarch around the time of Joan of Arc.
Although the building was originally the vicarage for the village of Purton, it wasn’t on its present site until 1912. It was moved, or so local folklore says, as the nearby church had run out of space for graves until they were right around the vicarage.
So the building was carefully taken down brick by brick and reconstructed on its current site. This position was chosen so that its front door step would be exactly the same height above sea level as the top of St Paul’s Cathedral in London.
The only vicar to live in both vicarages was Canon John Veysey whose picture can be seen hung on the walls of The Pear Tree today. The last vicar to live in the house was Canon Roy Blake who moved to a smaller house in 1986.
The Pear Tree opened its doors as a hotel in 1987 after the Diocese of Bristol sold the premises to Francis and Anne Young. The couple had a battle to get the hotel up and running which started with having to oust squatters who had set up home in the building. Today the hotel is now managed by the second generation of the Young family – Alix and her husband Tim who took over in 2013.
Anne Young, who originally opened the hotel, is still involved in the day-to-day management. This year, the hotel won the prestigious Cesar Award for Country Hotel of the Year by the Good Hotel Guide.
This former vicarage with both charm and character, sits between the Marlborough Downs and Cotswolds making it a perfect location for locals and tourists alike. It is only five miles from the M4 motorway and the railway town of Swindon. It provides easy access to Wiltshire, Gloucestershire, Cheltenham, Bath and London.
The Pear Tree prides itself on great customer service, good food and competitive rates. There are 17 rooms and the restaurant is open for lunch and dinner including non residents and is a popular destination for Sunday lunch. It is dog and child friendly with only one house rule – all visitors, including canine, have to say hello and get lots of fuss!
It is also a wedding venue, suitable for smaller weddings and is licensed for ceremonies. The team can cater for up to 50 people.
During 2016, The Pear Tree is offering a special wedding package for £2,016. This includes an event for 25 people, room hire for the ceremony, a drinks reception, three course meal and coffee as well as a glass of Prosecco for the toasts and an overnight stay for the couple. Also provided are: a red carpet, cake stand, place cards and menu and a dedicated wedding planner. Additional guests are charged at £50 a head.
The hotel has 17 rooms, all named after well known local people as well as a library, conference room, bar with snug and a restaurant. It has extensive grounds and borders the home of Purton Cricket Club, Wiltshire’s oldest club which is 200 years old in 2020.
Anne Young is an accomplished and passionate gardener. She’s redesigned the gardens turning them from a small herbaceous border and some overgrown fields to a wetland, wild flower meadow and a 600-vine vineyard as well as three beehives. Visitors can enjoy the wild flower meadow, buddleia walk and the copse of native oaks as well as the magnificent garden surrounding the hotel.
Thanks to Anne’s efforts, since 2010, hotel guests have been able to enjoy The Pear Tree’s own wine Cuvee Alix, Cuvee Anne and, from 2015, its first rose Cuvee Rosie.
Head chef is 30 year old Adam Conduit, originally from Royal Wootton Bassett and who has been at the Pear Tree for three years originally as a sous chef until his promotion to head chef last year. He is in charge of five staff who make up the kitchen team. They provide a varied menu which changes regularly and can cater for special dietary needs.
The Pear Tree has won many awards in its 30 years. It’s been featured in the Good Hotel Guide every year since 1992. It’s also won a Green Tourism Award in 2007, 2009, 2011 and 2013 and its kitchen team have won two rosettes from the AA and three restaurant awards from the RAC.
Its owners and staff are also very heavily involved in the local community, attending and sponsoring local events such as the Purton Food Festival each November.
Church End, Purton, Wiltshire, SN5 4ED