The Hotham Arms, Hotham: One of the most visited, most celebrated and most profitable pubs in Yorkshire

I’ve long held that the Hotham Arms should be one of the most visited, most celebrated and most profitable pubs in Yorkshire.

It’s got everything going for it – it’s in a lovely, prosperous Wolds village, it’s got an enormous beer garden, it’s got a series of intriguing outbuildings that can be utilised in fresh and imaginative ways and the interior is perfect for every occasion.

So why, you have every right to ask, have you never heard of it? Well, it’s had a chequered recent past. For a couple of decades, it was run by a fella called Joe Parkinson. To call Joe a character is a bit like calling the Hulk a bit of a mardy-arse.

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His larger-than-life personality, erratic cooking and divisive hosting style (I loved it, others turned and ran) sculpted the Hotham Arms into the ultimate members club.

The Hotham ArmsThe Hotham Arms
The Hotham Arms

Much of the trade came from regulars form the village and oncoming trade tended to be infrequent and non-repeat. Joe had to relinquish his grasp of the pub before his untimely passing around half-a-decade ago.

The pub reopened and closed again under new management and nothing seemed to be on the horizon to rescue it.

Well, now it’s back. Seemingly run by relatives of Joe, it retains many of the best features but has a distinctly new-rule feel. A lot of the chaos has gone as more sensible heads seem now to be in charge.

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Less of a bar area, now tables and there is a library seating space. It seems determined to become a place for food.

I wish the new regime of the Hotham Arms well. As close to a safe bet the in may have always appears to me, but the past few years have proven the safe bets just don’t exist any more.

They’re steady away, though, so maybe by this time next year, you’ll all have heard of (and be visiting) the Hotham Arms.

Welcome 4/5

Atmosphere 4/5

Drinks choice 5/5

Prices 4/5

The Hotham Arms, 20 Main Street, Hotham, YO43 4UD

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