Game shooters staying at the White Horse, Chilgrove, West Sussex, before a day at, say, Chilgrove, King's Walk or Uppark are very well cared for.
“We are surrounded by shoots, with Chilgrove, King’s Walk and Uppark to name just three on our doorstep,” said Niki, the manager at the impressive White Horse, “and we pride ourselves on catering for shoot parties. Whether it’s use of the private dining room, our own gun storage facilities, dog beds or even the shoot butler, we can cater for your every need.”
Reassuring words and this hotel certainly benefits from a glorious setting, nestling as it does into the foot of an escarpment on the South Downs. In fact, as we enjoyed a pre-dinner drink on the lawn to the front it was easy to imagine pheasants being driven over our heads from the steep slope to the south.
There are 15 bedrooms spread around the tastefully converted outbuildings, each named after different game species. Two of them even have their own hot tubs to relax those sore shoulders after a day on the high pheasants.
For most shoot parties the important part of any hotel or pub is the bar and restaurant, and I don’t think anyone will be disappointed by what’s on offer at the White Horse. Exquisite food and a bustling, friendly atmosphere make it all too easy for time to sail by as you discuss guns, birds and saving the planet into the early hours.
At dinner we enjoyed sumptuous pigeon breast, shot within range of the hotel, for starters and Niki directed me towards the homemade pie of the day for my main course. I was not disappointed.
With a private dining room and tailor-made menus for your shoot party, the White Horse is one sporting hotel which ensures visiting guns have almost as good a time at night as they do in the field during the day.
Cost: From £90
Shoots nearby: Chilgrove, King’s Walk, Uppark, Arundel and Apsley Sporting shooting ground near Midhurst.
Contact: 01243 519444 or visit thewhitehorse.co.uk
Scores for the White Horse, Chilgrove
Catering: Delicious pigeon, good beer and wine and a hearty breakfast too. 8/10
Accommodation: Fifteen rooms spread around the converted outbuildings are all comfortable. 8/10
Atmosphere: Busy, friendly and fun. Manager Niki is doing a good job on this evidence. 8/10
Service: No problems to report. A knowledgeable and attentive team. 8/10
Suitability for shooters: Dog beds provided. Hotel has its own gun safes. Private dining. Shoot butler. Helipad. 10/10