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Eda Ewers has run Worlington Hall Country House Hotel for 23 years.

Eda Ewers has run Worlington Hall Country House Hotel for 23 years. (Charlie Reed / S&S)

WORLINGTON — It’s nice to walk into a place you’ve never been and feel at home.

That familial vibe is what makes Worlington Hall Country House Hotel worth a visit. Tucked away off the B1102 in this sleepy village outside RAFs Mildenhall and Lakenheath, it’s a comfy spot to have a meal or a drink and just relax.

Add to the equation one Eda Ewers, the hotel’s longtime manager, and it’s like you’re at grandma’s house. It’s so cozy you almost want to curl up on one of the couches in the pub for a nap after eating. Heck, you probably could if you got the OK from Ewers.

The 75-year-old has run Worlington Hall for 23 years and is the glue that holds the 16th-century house-turned-hotel together.

"You’ve got to love it, and I do," said Ewers, who still serves pints behind the bar and drives a hard bargain with pushy vendors, according to her account of a recent billing dispute.

Along with managing the restaurant and the eight-room hotel, Ewers also heads up the events management side of the house, which ranges from small private parties that can be held in the two smaller dining rooms, to weddings in the large dining room overlooking the back garden.

"I never thought I’d come and finish my days here," said the Suffolk native who worked at the hotel as a teen in the late 1940s and grew up just down the street in Barton Mills.

"Except for the owners, it really hasn’t changed that much over the years. It’s just has a lovely atmosphere and good food," said Ewers, perhaps the most noteworthy fixture at Worlington Hall.

The big draw on the menu is the Stilton chicken (12.95 pounds), a hearty breast stuffed with cheese, wrapped in bacon and served with a thyme-and-cream sauce. Even if you don’t like Stilton, a pungent English cheese, the dish is mild enough to suit most tastes, said chef Laurence Marsters.

While Marsters is in the midst of revamping the menu, he insists the dish will continue to be a mainstay at Worlington Hall.

"People associate this place with the Stilton chicken," he said.

Pete Wojciechowski, a Boeing contractor working at RAF Lakenheath and staying at the hotel, reluctantly admitted his favorite is the BLT (7.95 pounds.)

"I get it every other night," he said.

Wojciechowski, on his third trip to England in the past year or so, said he always stays at Worlington Hall, mainly for the atmosphere Ewers fosters.

"Eda is great. She’ll do anything for you," said the St. Louis resident. "It’s nice to just come and sit by the fire (inside the pub) in the winter. … It’s the hospitality here that makes it so unique."

Worlington Hall Country House Hotel

Address:B1102, Worlington, IP28 8RX

Hours:open 12:30-2:30 p.m. (4 p.m. on Sunday) for lunch; 6:30-9 p.m. for dinner.

Phone:01638 712631

Web site:www.worlingtonhall-hotel.co.uk


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