Now that we live a little further out of Bristol centre, my nap time car drives have become a world of discovery. A couple of weeks ago, I cruised into Bruton, my snoring child in the back.
Bruton is undeniably pretty, and dreamy, and peppered with places to hide from reality and baste yourself in local produce, fudge, wine or nice fabric stuff. The houses are hewn from that beautiful yellow-grey stone that Somerset has lots of. There’s a very smart hotel and restaurant called At The Chapel, which is glorious – the sort of place you want your next night away from the kids to be at.
There’s a classic English boarding school intertwined with the village. Jackets, and ties, and country casual, and the smell of labrador. Mud covered Range Rovers – and I got the feeling the mud was as important as the Range Rover. A wicked looking antiques shop. And, just outside the centre, past the station (yes! you can get the train from Bristol, amazing!) Hauser and Wirth Somerset.
Hauser and Worth is basically a large-scale art gallery and community art space, complete with huge landscaped and perennially managed gardens, and a totally stunning bar/restaurant called Roth Bar and Grill. It’s free to go into Hauser and Wirth, and, children are welcome, but absolutely must be kept under close supervision.
The current exhibition is fascinating large scale installations by an Indian artist. Single pieces take up single rooms. Most of them glitter, enticingly, or make some sort of interesting noise. They are complete toddler magnets. Mine isn’t fast, but I was doing the old sprint and tackle in every single room. Therefore, my conclusion is that this is a place to visit when you can have them strapped in or on, or when they are old enough to not trash priceless works of art at will (if that age exists). Nevertheless, we both found the whole thing spellbinding. Loved it.
Afterwards, we treated ourselves to chicken and chips in the bar. All the meat is raised on the farm next door. Roth Bar and Grill isn’t an economical option, but it’s bloody lovely. The artwork on the walls, and the neon-peppered light installations, are gorgeous.
Hauser and Worth has Family Saturdays, and the next one is in April. I think it’d be excellent and is totally doable by train if you don’t drive.