In the past year, we have all been forced to adapt our lives in a number of ways. The pandemic and subsequent lockdown restrictions mean that most of the experiences we enjoy have been unavailable for over twelve months. As lockdown eases across the world, we can slowly begin returning to restruants, cafes and bars for drinks, meals and some much needed social contact and catching up with friends.
While most of us have greatly missed dining out, many may still feel anxious and apprehensive about the return to normality. Sitting indoors, in a crowded space with other patrons may still make many of us feel uneasy. Fortunately many establishments have reinvented their venues to accommodate more outdoor seating options. Providing outdoor seating allows customers to keep a safe distance in an area with greater ventilation – Conditions that are considered safer for transmission rates of the virus.
If you are searching for high quality, unique outdoor dining locations, you might ask family or friends for their recommendations, read online reviews, or use a service like SquareMeal to find new places to visit. We also have a few ideas for those looking for an alternative to the traditional dining experience. Here’s our pick of spooky, historic outdoor dining locations to check out post-lockdown. Whether you are looking for a romantic dinner or venue hire for a large scale event – we hope this article provides inspiration for your next booking.
The Lost Orangery, located in Chippenham, is a historic venue set among 500 acres of countryside that has some striking spooky elements. It’s host to a crumbling castle, woodland and gothic features that look straight out of a lavish vampire novel. The enormous archways, Bridge overlooking the lake, hanging chandeliers and Castle backdrop would not look out of place in a Dracula adaptation. For outdoor dining experiences, the venue hire options include a rustic grotto, balconies, botanic gardens, and marquees.
Imagine the vast estate lit up with a few jack o lanterns and it’s an appealing venue hire choice for horror fans.
Another spooky location, rumoured to host a ghostly resident, is The Woolpack Inn in Kent. The UK is the home of many old and perhaps haunted inns – but this one offers a terrace for outdoor dining and drinks. It has an eerie feel, with antique beams and historic features throughout the venue which is over 600 years old.
It’s most mysterious visitor is known as the Grey Lady, a ghostly spectre who is said to wander the halls of the Inn. It is speculated that she may be a former owner and is said to be friendlier than most spooks.
Another Inn that is sure to catch the attention of ghost hunters is The Swettenham Arms in Cheshire. The owners have documented several unexplained incidents within the walls of this historic building. Luckily most haven’t occurred in the large outdoor spaces which are used for dining and events.
An exorcist actually visited the Inn to cleanse evil spirits in the 1950s. However, he perhaps didn’t do a great job and reports of spooks and spirits continue to the present day. In 2005 a customer reported fleeing in fear when she saw a nun floating beside the fireplace.
There is no shortage of spooky locations for dining and events which offer outdoor spaces to eat and drink. Whether you’re looking for a a historic gothic estate or a cosy Inn with otherworldly visitors – the return to dining out is set to be a joyful occasion after a year in lockdown. Let us know some of your favourite haunted and alternative venues!