Three of the best... countryside retreat packages for groups

C&IT highlights three packages for groups wanting to escape to the countryside, including a cookery school, gourmet dinner party and an afternoon of teambuilding.

Lainston House, near Winchester
Lainston House, near Winchester

SEASON Cookery School at Lainston House

Launched last month by Exclusive Hotels at the 50-room Lainston House hotel near Winchester is SEASON, a new cookery school concept that can be hired for groups of up to 24.

SEASON offers all-day courses based on Italian, French or Eastern cuisine, which end with a private dining experience. SEASON also offers a selection of shorter, four-hour courses and evening events including falconry, wine tasting and cocktail-making classes.

Lainston House includes eight meeting rooms. The Dawley Barn, the largest of these, can host a reception for 200 guests. The property’s other meeting rooms can host groups of between 20 and 50. 

Dinner Party at Dewsall, Dewsall Court

This September, Dewsall Court in Herefordshire will launch its ‘Dinner Party at Dewsall’ series of gourmet dinner events. A series of four events between September and March will feature exclusive cocktails and a selection of guest cooks, including writers and broadcasters who don’t have their own restaurants.

The first dinner party will be hosted on 17 September by chef director of Salt Yard Group restaurants Ben Tish and will be sponsored by Pol Roger Champagne. A Halloween-themed party will follow on 31 October, hosted by Valentine Warner. A Valentine’s weekend event with Sabrina Ghayour will be hosted on 13 February 2016 and Ravinder Bhogal will host the series’ final dinner on 31 March 2016.

Meeting facilities at The Dewsell consists of three main event rooms: the 40-seat Conservatory, a 70-seat Studio and the 140-capacity Wainhouse Barn.

Teambuilding at Brockencote Hall

The Winner of VisitEngland’s Small Hotel of the Year 2015 Award, Brockencote Hall is a former Victorian country manor located in Worcestershire.

The hotel offers a wide variety of teambuilding activities, from clay shooting and archery to more peculliar activities such as duck herding and fire walking.

Brockencote Hall has three meeting rooms: the Heron, which can host small meetings for up to eight people; the 20-capacity Swan; and the 38-seat Chaddesley. It also has the Malvern and Terrace private dining rooms, suitable for 26 and 38 guests respectively.


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