My quest for finding old and beautiful pubs brought me to The Bingley Arms in Yorkshire. It’s near Leeds and it’s officially the oldest in Britain, set in the Guinness Book of Records. It dates back over 1000 years, when the Vikings were still conquering parts of the country and even before England had its first King. The pub is big and it was very busy, so I don’t have a lot of pictures with the whole room, but only with details.
The Bingley Arms was known as The Priests Inn a few hundreds of years ago. Its history dates back to 953AD when Samson Ellis brewed in the central part of the building. There is evidence that it might have been even older, as it was built before a nearby church that dates from 950.
The Priests Inn was a popular spot for travelling monks to rest. Later it was used by stagecoach passengers for a meal and the adjoining buildings were used as stables for weary horses. In the chimney there are two priest holes after the Dissolution in 1539.
In the 1700s this beautiful Dutch oven for making bread was build and it’s one of the few still in its original position in England.
In 1780 the Inn was renamed to The Bingley Arms, after it was taken over by Lord Bingley.
As any old pub, it has to have a good ghost story, objects moved, pans of water boiled on cold stoves and candles lit on their own. Of course, ghosts can be spotted at the pub, if you are lucky enough.
Today the pub is within easy reach with a huge car park. The other guests were so friendly and the atmosphere is exactly one can expect form a local village pub. I loved it and I would love to visit it again, maybe to have something to eat in the restaurant, as we only went for drinks this time.
The Bingley Arms is on Church Lane, Bardsey, Leeds, LS17 9DR.