Clyffe Hall Hotel

We have featured Clyffe Hall in Market Lavington in several of our museum blogs and know that it was run as an hotel for many years from 1939.

We see it here on a postcard from the 1950s when it was an hotel but, unfortunately, this picture is a mirror image of the actual building!

We have recently been given more information about the early days of the hotel business there.

Clyffe Hall Hotel opened in 1939. It had 14 bedrooms for guests with more rooms for the owners, Stewart and Barbara Reynolds, and the staff.

Mr and Mrs Reynolds dispensed with the private gas lighting that was installed in the building and had electric lighting wired in. Wash basins were fitted in the bedrooms.

A commercial coke fired Aga was installed in the kitchen. The house already had background coke fired central heating fitted. The hotel was fully licensed.

Lavington railway station at nearby Littleton Pannell was important to the business. Both Mr Milsom at the repair garage and Mr Read at the cycle shop ran taxis, which enabled guests to be driven from the station to the hotel.

Mrs Reynolds ran the hotel successfully during the 2nd World War. After the war the business continued and wider car ownership benefitted the hotel in its attractive setting. Books were published about hotels; Let’s Halt a While’ was one where Clyffe Hall featured.

Lunch, tea and dinner were available for guests and event catering for weddings, parties and meetiñgs was undertaken.

After the war the house at Erlestoke, which had  been requisitioned, was used to run courses for senior army officers. It was called  ‘The Senior Officers Training School’ and provided business for Clyffe Hall, derived from people attending the course and their families. Nearby Dauntsey’s School also provided business for the hotel from parents visiting their children.

At the museum, we are always very grateful to people who can add to our knowledge and understanding of the locality, its people and buildings and provide extra information about our artefacts. This can be done by adding comments to our blog entries.

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