Enjoy a drink in Britain’s smallest pub

Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk

This little pub has a bar that measures just 15ft by 7ft, and has been serving beer to rammed customers since 1867.

In 1984, 102 people, a dog named Bob and a stuffed-cat met at a pub in Bury St Edmunds. An unusual meeting under normal circumstances, but noteworthy in this instance because the pub was The Nutshell, the 15-by-7-feet (4.5m by 2.1m) holder of the smallest-pub-in-Britain title. Of course it’s not the size of the place that matters, it’s the soul. “I could be bounded in a nutshell,” said Hamlet prophetically...and count myself a king of infinite space.”

Converted to a drinking den in 1857, the building’s traditional pink Suffolk walls and oak panelling are even older. So old, in fact, that the tiny building has gained four ghosts: a small boy on the top floor, a Victorian gentleman on the second floor, and a ghostly monk and pregnant nun in the cellar. Hear the full, intriguingly scandalous tale over an appropriately-named Abbott Ale from the local Greene King Brewery - within barrel-rolling distance down the road; or visit the first-floor restaurant, book a table (there’s only one) and order the chicken dinner: it’s just a pickled egg. Proof that if there’s a quirkier, more idiosyncratic and fun drinking hole in the UK, then it’s definitely a bigger one.

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For more local tourist information:

  • Bury St Edmunds Tourist Information Centre
  • Email Address tic@stedsbc.gov.uk
  • Contact Details 01284 764667

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The Nustshell © VisitBritainThe Nustshell © VisitBritain
The Nustshell © VisitBritainThe Nustshell © VisitBritain

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