The Colesbourne is a large Cotswold stone inn on the Cheltenham to Cirencester road which was built in 1827. The building has three gables with ashlar quoins and a stone-tiled roof. An advertisement in 1927 stated that teas were a speciality.
The Colesbourne Inn has had a long association with Wadworth Brewery of Devizes. The lease was acquired by Wadworth’s in 1962. The stables have been converted to bedrooms.
Gloucestershire Echo, 13th December 2000 – Inn turns back time on festive fare: The Colesbourne Inn is taking a step back in time this Christmas by shunning party poppers and Slade on the jukebox for traditional decor and Victorian fare. Landlord Phil Sharp and his staff will add the finishing touch to the experience by dressing in period costume. The pub will also be decked our with mistletoe and lit up with hundreds of candles.
Gloucestershire Echo, Monday 14th April 2003 – Pub gets vote as poll point: Villagers in Colesbourne will go to their local pub to vote. The Colesbourne Inn is the only pub out of 96 polling stations in the Cotswolds for the 1st May parish and district elections.
Gloucestershire Echo, 2nd February 2005 – Top tourist pub closed in row with tenant: One of the Cotswolds’ best-known pubs is in the hands of bailiffs. The Colesbourne Inn has closed because of financial problems. A notice on the front door says the pub’s assets have been frozen. The pub is owned by Gloucestershire’s Lord Lieutenant Henry Elwes and has been in his family for centuries.
Brewery Wadworth & Co of Devizes, which leases the 18th century pub, said it is in talks with the tenant landlord Phil Sharp. Neither the brewery or Mr Elwes were able to go into further details about the dispute.
It is believed a new landlord could be installed by 1st March. Mr Elwes said: “It’s a huge loss to the village to have the pub closed as it’s very important to villagers. The pub does 100 lunches a day and every bedroom is full. This is a huge disappointment for us as we’re opening our gardens [in the Colesbourne estate] for our snowdrops on Sunday.”
Gloucestershire Echo. Weekend advertising feature, 6th August 2005 – Discover a new gem: Sitting amid the rustic elegance of The Colesbourne Inn, savouring the mouth-watering flavours of Foxley sirloin steak sauteed in wild mushrooms, it’s hard to imagine that just a few months ago, the pub was near derelict and waist high in stinging nettles. The pub was facing ruin until new manager Jeff Ward took over in April.
Now, after five weeks of furious work and a £200,000 refit, Jeff has transformed the Colesbourne Inn into perhaps the region’s best-kept culinary secret. A former director of food at the Grand Hotel Europa in St Petersburg – Jeff has taken his eye for quality and turned it to the relaxed environment of the Colesbourne Inn. He has spent more than £20,000 on a new kitchen and recruited leading chef Richard Johnson – a protégé of Gordon Ramsey – as his right-hand man. The result of Jeff and Richard’s top-class experience is a rare and delightful marriage of cosy pub informality and five-star hotel luxury.
Gloucestershire Echo, 16th October 2008 – Police to hold meeting in pub: A pub will host a police public meeting in a bid to bring in more punters. The Colesbourne Inn is the venue for the South Cotswolds Police Community Consultative Meeting at 7.30pm and it’s the first time a pub has held the informal event. The meetings give residents the chance to meet local police, ask questions and raise issues of concern. Tea and coffee will be available.
Gloucestershire Echo, 30th January 2010 – ‘Not a flash in the pan’: Historic Colesbourne Inn has been quenching the thirst of travellers for almost two centuries and is enjoying a bit of a rebirth. The pub dates back to 1827 and is run by Richard Johnson who joined five years ago as a chef but is now the landlord.
While you can have bar staples such as ham and eggs and fish and chips, if you go a la carte there are dishes such as roast loin of local venison, game plate or sea bass bourguignon to tempt you.
Gloucestershire Echo, 10th March 2010 – Hunt returns to inn after 36-year gap: History was made as a hunt returned to its old stamping ground after 36 years. Hunters, horses and hounds of the Cotswold Hunt met at he Colesbourne Inn to ride out yesterday at 10.30am. A picture of the last known meet, in 1974, hangs in the hostelry and the proprietors wanted to replicate the sporting occasion.
Manageress Jacqueline Wasley said: “It’s a historic occasion for the pub and really lovely to see them. The Cotswold Hunt used to meet at the Frogmill, Shipton Oliffe, but that shut down for two years and we tried to get them here. They wanted to meet next week for the Gold Cup, but we’re busy doing breakfasts for our guests, so they came a week earlier.”
The hunt has its AGM here, so we wanted to thank them for their support, and also it was a farewell for our landlord and chef Richard Johnson, who’s leaving.
Gloucestershire Echo, Tuesday 11th December 2012 – Pub grub earns inn top award: The Colesbourne Inn in Colesbourne has won the Food Pub of the Year at the annual Wadworth award ceremony. The awards are given to the top performing pubs out of the 240-strong Wadworth pub estate. Licensees Liz and Trevor Johnson said they were delighted to be the winner.
Rupert Bagnall, Wadworth managed house operations manager, said: “The annual awards event is always a great celebration for us at Wadworth. Our licensees work hard all year round and at this ceremony we reward those whose efforts are particularly noteworthy.
Map reference: SP 000133
Owner in 1891: J.H. Elwes, Colesbourne Estate (leased Cirencester Brewery)
Rateable value in 1891: £12.0s.0d.
Type of licence in 1891: Alehouse
Owner in 1903: H.J. Elwes, Colesbourne Estate (leased Cirencester Brewery)
Rateable value in 1903: £12.0s.0d.
Type of licence in 1903: Alehouse
Closing time in 1903: 10pm
Landlords at the Colesbourne Inn include:
1856 G. Lester
1885 George Hiscock
1891 Benjamin Bubb
1902, 1913 Thomas Hendry
1919,1939 Mrs Alice Barnfield
1990,1991 Eric and Mary Bird
1993 Trevor and Liz Johnson
2002,2005 Phil Sharp
2005 Jeff Ward
2010 Richard Johnson
2010 Jacqueline Wasley (manageress)
2010 Trevor and Liz Johnson