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The Sun, Coniston

Pub added by elizabeth mcgraw
Station Road
LA21 8HQ

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Reviews (Current Rating Average: of 10) Add Review see review guidelines

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Blue Scrumpy left this review about The Sun

I was expecting a very steep walk up to this pub overlooking Coniston. But it actually wasn't too bad.

Finding the pub was the hardest part. With no lights in the village, I managed to find my way up the lane using a torch on my mobile phone. Luckily I'd also been following another couple in front of me and when they disappeared out of sight, I guessed they'd turned off the lane to enter the pub. Without them, I'd have probably walked straight past.

The last review mentions how stunning the building is. I can't comment on that, as I couldn't see much. But the atmosphere inside was very good and it probably felt much like pubs used to be before electricity!

The Sun was far better prepared for the power cut than the Yewdale, having candles in bottles on each table. It was cash payment only, but the real ales were going down well - Cross Bay Halo The EPA, Coniston Premium XB Bluebird Bitter & Oliver's Light Ale, Cumbrian Ales Loweswater Gold & Vanilla Oatmeal Stout & Ulverston Celebration Ale.

My Vanilla Oatmeal Stout was my favourite of the day and with friendly and welcoming staff and customers, this was also my favourite pub of the day. It was also doing a roaring trade, despite the power cut.

I did manage to make out that the pub was split over two levels. Dogs are welcomed and were very much in evidence, whilst I also caught sight of a picture of the Bluebird made famous by Donald Campbell.

Had I not been given a second drink on the house in the Yewdale, I would have stayed for a second here. Well worth a visit when in Coniston.

On 27th November 2021 - rating: 8
[User has posted 2420 recommendations about 2419 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Ian Mapp left this review about Sun Hotel

Simply stunning building. Must visit.

Inside was just as good - exactly how you would want a bar to be.

Beers were excellent. I went for Loweswater Gold, having enjoyed it in various locations in the Lakes over the week.

A memorable visit, Blogged at

On 23rd May 2017 - rating: 10
[User has posted 277 recommendations about 276 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

John Bonser left this review about Sun Hotel

Centrally situated in Coniston is The Sun Hotel, A sign by a small bridge at the foot of the hill up which the pub is situated tells us that the pub is a “classic 400 year old free house with 8 hand pulled ( mostly ) local beers”. Should we need further encouragement to visit, we are told that the pub is “ up the hill and well worth the walk”.

As we start the shortish uphill climb, an imposing looking stone built country house hotel – The Sun Hotel – complete with a large glass fronted conservatory, outside verandah and lower level garden overlooking the village quickly come into view and we start to wonder if we’ve misread the earlier sign.

Carrying on past the imposing hotel entrance, where we see the date 1902 set into the stonework above the entrance, we see, adjoining the hotel, but to one side behind it, what is indeed an old pub as advertised. It’s an unusual set up – an old traditional style Lakeland pub, to which, some 300 years later, someone has seemingly come along and added an imposing Edwardian style country house hotel as an annexe in front.

The bar features a black beamed ceiling, a flagstoned floor, some exposed stonework and is traditionally furnished with settles padded benches and bar stools. An old imposing fireplace has pride of place along one wall. The slate topped bar counter also catches the eye. There’s a few Donald Campbell photos and the framed front page of The Daily Mirror reporting his untimely death on the nearby lake. There’s a number of farming implements and rosettes won for prize cattle hanging down from the rafters. Despite some obvious modernisation, subdued lighting and the absence of TV sets, fruit machines etc contribute to a reasonably traditional interior, albeit one that doesn’t really have the look or feel of a 400 year old inn. An open wide staircase leads to an upstairs seating area which I didn’t explore.

The pub appears to be the haunt of a regular band of loyal drinkers who, despite initially assuming that I was part of the large wedding party who were expected here, were very friendly and willing to suggest which of the ales to go for, which was just as well, as they had positioned themselves in such a way that it was quite a challenge to actually get to the bar and see for myself what was on the pumps.

Whilst some of the tables in the main bar room were designed to accommodate diners, on my mid September evening visits, the fine weather and mountain views had obviously persuaded most diners to pass through the narrow corridor and the function room connecting the pub to the hotel and to eat either in the large conservatory or the verandah in front, where, noticeably, some of the tables had seen better days and were in need of repair. Notably, there’s no separate bar counter in the hotel part of the building – thus people wanting to dine had to take their turn and queue alongside the drinkers in the pub.

Unusually and obviously to encourage customer loyalty, purchase of a beer entitles one to a discount card, giving 15% off on drinks valid for a month starting the day after the initial purchase, which effectively means continuously for regular customers.

On the real ale front, as promised by the sign at the bottom of the hill, beers from local microbreweries dominate, although the ubiquitous Black Sheep was spotted. Beers from Ulverston, Hawshead, Barngates and Coniston were amongst the beers on offer. Notably, the Coniston beers were cheaper in here than in The Black Bull, just down the hill.

Beers sampled were in good nick. The pub is in the 2015 CAMRA Good Beer Guide and the sticker is prominently displayed, as is a poster telling us that the pub features in the CAMRA Lake District Pub Walks book.

This is a slightly unusual place, but, yes, it is indeed worth the walk up the hill.

On 21st October 2014 - rating: 8
[User has posted 560 recommendations about 560 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Will Larter left this review about Sun Hotel

The hotel (built 1902) perches grandly on a hill overlooking the village, but the 16th century pub lurks behind, a stone-built house with plenty of character. The interior has been modernised with plenty of light allowed in through exposed beams and an open staircase. There are eight hand pumps with mostly local beers (Keswick, Barngates, Coniston and Hawkshead), which is nice to see. I only had time for a swift drink between buses, but this one would merit a longer visit.

On 17th January 2012 - rating: 8
[User has posted 3688 recommendations about 3433 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Graham Coombs left this review about Sun Hotel

Perched up on the hill above the village, this small hotel has a good bar area with lots of stone and wood and a splendid open fire. Nice range of local beers, with upper-end food. Probably best enjoyed at quiet times.

On 27th August 2011 - rating: 8
[User has posted 3290 recommendations about 3227 pubs]