***Our pizza oven is now open Fridays & Saturdays 12-8pm**

About

A historic village pub with a modern approach

History

A public house steeped in history

The family records reveal that The Dorset Arms was built in 1595 and became a public house in 1735.

Situated in the outstandingly beautiful Sussex Weald, part of the historic Buckhurst Estate, the pub is named after the Earls and Dukes of Dorset, one time heads of the Sackville family, and shares a heritage of family ownership now headed by their descendant, William Sackville, the 11th Earl De La Warr.

It has been in the same family ownership since the 16th century, except for the period 1986-2013, during which it was the property of Harvey’s of Lewes. It is now back under family ownership.

 

Easily accessed via the footpaths through the Buckhurst Estate are both the church of St. Michael and All Angels, in which the tombs of the Sackville descendants can be found and the real life “100 Aker Wood” made famous as the setting for the Winnie the Pooh stories of A. A. Milne, where Christopher Robin played with the present Lord De La Warr’s father.

In his 1909 ‘Sketchbook of Tours in Kent and Sussex, a charming drawing of the Dorset Arms appears by Charles Rennie Mackintosh, the celebrated early 20th century architect, designer and artist. Mackintosh was known to be a close friend of Lady Margaret Sackville’s and while visiting Buckhurst Park designed the sign for The Dorset Arms and is also believed to have added the finials to the exterior of the pub.

Part of the historic Buckhurst Park Estate

Buckhurst Estate

Buckhurst Park has belonged to the De La Warr family for more than 900 years. In the reign of William the conqueror, it formed part of the Estate of Ralph de Dene, and was recorded in the Doomsday Book.

It passed to the Sackville family – Lords Buckhurst, Earls and Dukes of Dorset, and Earls De La Warr in 1140 and the history of Buckhurst and the Sackville family has been woven into English history ever since.

The Estate hosts many outdoor pursuits including pheasant shooting, fishing and clay pigeon shooting and, with the beautiful backdrop of Buckhurst Park, is the ideal choice as a wedding venue or for corporate events.

Find out more at buckhurstpark.co.uk

Our People

Lord De La Warr
Lord De La Warr

Having spent most of his early career in the City of London, Lord De La Warr has always had a passion for food, which is evident in his involvement with all aspects of The Dorset Arms, but particularly the menus.

When, five years ago the opportunity to buy back The Dorset Arms presented itself Lord De La Warr was able to incorporate the pub back into the Buckhurst Park Estate as well as realising his childhood dream of owning a restaurant.

Lord De La Warr is passionate about using locally sourced food, our Sussex beef comes from a local farm or when possible comes from his own pure bred, organic (grass fed) Sussex cattle reared on the Buckhurst Estate, as do the pheasant, partridge, duck and venison that we use during the season.

The famous and very popular Buckhurst Park sausages are produced locally and made to his own (secret) recipe.

Lord De La Warr’s involvement in The Dorset Arms ensures that we have a diverse selection of classic and contemporary dishes, served in a restaurant that offers the very best without ever surrendering the feel of a village pub.

Careers

Join our team

We’re always looking for extraordinary people to joint our team.
Please get in touch for vacancies or to find out more.

Call us on

01892 770278

What our customers say

""Excellent food, service & a lovely varied menu too""

"Excellent food, service and a lovely, varied menu too. We had a great evening, thanks guys. Highly recommended for dinner."

Steve Price - September 2022 - Google

""They were always attentive and the food was excellent. We could not have asked for more...""

"We hired a pod for our 40th wedding anniversary. The staff managed to balance being always available but not a constant interruption. They were always attentive and the food was excellent. We could not have asked for more..."

Paul Stockley - October 2022 - Google

"Excellent meal, excellent service "

"Excellent meal, excellent service. Very happy friendly staff. Lovely atmosphere.
"

Malcolm Barton - November 2022 - Google

""Food was excellent, service was fantastic""

"It was the first time I've been to the Dorset Arms. Food was excellent, service was fantastic and I would recommend eating here. I will be back again for the Sunday roast!
"

Tony Laughlin - November 2022 - Google

"We will definitely go back"

"The service was efficient and courteous and the food was great. Overall, a very pleasant experience and reasonably priced. We will definitely go back."

January 2020 - TripAdvisor

"Better and better"

"Since the Restaurant was taken back by the estate, it has gone from strength to strength.Good locally sourced food, good ambience & service.We shall return!"

Christopher S. - November 2018 - TripAdvisor

"Fabulous food in authentic surroundings"

"Really lovely inn. Very welcoming with real old worlde charm. Great service. Had wonderful perfectly cooked sole in delicious sauce. Wish it was my local!"

Anne E. - June 2019 - TripAdvisor

"One of the best..."

"Food is excellent, service is great. The flat ironed chicken is to die for. Great value, brilliant atmosphere."

Gordon D. - March 2019 - TripAdvisor

"Wonderful dining experience"

"Will highly recommend the dorset to all my family & friends and will be visiting there again! All the staff were a pleasure to be around."

Jean W. - May 2019 - TripAdvisor

"Great food and lovely pub"

"We went on a Sunday evening and enjoyed a great roast. Service was excellent. Pub was classy without even trying."

March 2019 - OpenTable

  • Certificate of
    Excellence

    2015-2017 Winner, TripAdvisor

  • Diners' Choice
    Award 2018

    OpenTable

Reservations

Book a table

Or call us on
01892 770 278

The Dorset Arms Instagram

🙌🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿To celebrate @england getting through to the #euros finals we are screening the game in the bar & the restaurant on Sunday night 🙌🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿! 
•
We will have a ‘Bar Snacks Buffet’ available at £10pp - kick off is at 8pm so come along from 6pm, soak up the atmosphere and get the ball rolling!! 
•
Spaces are limited so call 01892 770278 now to book a table - we’ve got your Sunday sorted! 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿#comeonengland🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
#euros #football #englandfootball #pubsofinstagram #sussex #sussexpubs #englishpub #muddysussex #tunbridgewellsmums #tunbridgewells #eastgrinstead #ashdownforest #eurosfinal #weekendvibes #itscominghome

🙌🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿To celebrate @england getting through to the #euros finals we are screening the game in the bar & the restaurant on Sunday night 🙌🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿!

We will have a ‘Bar Snacks Buffet’ available at £10pp - kick off is at 8pm so come along from 6pm, soak up the atmosphere and get the ball rolling!!

Spaces are limited so call 01892 770278 now to book a table - we’ve got your Sunday sorted! 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿#comeonengland🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
#euros #football #englandfootball #pubsofinstagram #sussex #sussexpubs #englishpub #muddysussex #tunbridgewellsmums #tunbridgewells #eastgrinstead #ashdownforest #eurosfinal #weekendvibes #itscominghome
...

A delicious new dish on our summer menu - Buttermilk Panna Cotta, Vanilla Tuile, lovely and light with just  the perfect amount of ‘wobble’..

A delicious new dish on our summer menu - Buttermilk Panna Cotta, Vanilla Tuile, lovely and light with just the perfect amount of ‘wobble’.. ...

Fancy something for the table? Introducing some delicious new additions to our menu..Popcorn Clams with Lemon Aioli and Crispy Pork Belly Bites with Spiced Apple Sauce. Estrella Galicia makes the perfect summer accompaniment!

Fancy something for the table? Introducing some delicious new additions to our menu..Popcorn Clams with Lemon Aioli and Crispy Pork Belly Bites with Spiced Apple Sauce. Estrella Galicia makes the perfect summer accompaniment! ...

Introducing one of our delicious new summer dishes…Pan Roasted Rye Bay Stone Bass, Crayfish Lemon Beurre Blanc, Samphire, Jersey Royals, Green Beans. Summer dining at its best!

Introducing one of our delicious new summer dishes…Pan Roasted Rye Bay Stone Bass, Crayfish Lemon Beurre Blanc, Samphire, Jersey Royals, Green Beans. Summer dining at its best! ...

Our pizza oven is now open! Join us in our charming garden setting for our exquisite wood fired pizzas. Fridays and Saturdays 12 - 8pm.

Our pizza oven is now open! Join us in our charming garden setting for our exquisite wood fired pizzas. Fridays and Saturdays 12 - 8pm. ...

Dip into Summer with our Halloumi Fries & Sweet chilli dip - perfect as a starter or just to share .. 
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
#sussexpubs #sussexlife #dogfriendlypubs  #tunbridgewells #pubswithrooms #pubgarden #englishpubs #weekendvibes #ashdownforest #eastgrinstead #weekendgetaway #countrylife #weekendwalks #lunchwithfriends #pintofbeer

Dip into Summer with our Halloumi Fries & Sweet chilli dip - perfect as a starter or just to share ..
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
#sussexpubs #sussexlife #dogfriendlypubs #tunbridgewells #pubswithrooms #pubgarden #englishpubs #weekendvibes #ashdownforest #eastgrinstead #weekendgetaway #countrylife #weekendwalks #lunchwithfriends #pintofbeer
...

Come and get a slice of summer! The sun is shining and we will be opening our pizza oven every week on Fridays and Saturdays  from 12-8pm .
•
You can enjoy  our delicious hand made pizzas ‘al fresco’ in our beautiful garden - feels like summer is finally here! 
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
#pizzalover #sussexlife #pizzatime #pizzaoven #pubgarden #dogfriendlypub #englishpub #lunchideas #sussexfood #ashdownforest #tunbridgewellsmums #englishpub #sussexkitchen #muddysussex #alfresco #lunchideas #pizzagram

Come and get a slice of summer! The sun is shining and we will be opening our pizza oven every week on Fridays and Saturdays from 12-8pm .

You can enjoy our delicious hand made pizzas ‘al fresco’ in our beautiful garden - feels like summer is finally here!
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
#pizzalover #sussexlife #pizzatime #pizzaoven #pubgarden #dogfriendlypub #englishpub #lunchideas #sussexfood #ashdownforest #tunbridgewellsmums #englishpub #sussexkitchen #muddysussex #alfresco #lunchideas #pizzagram
...

Our Chicken Caesar Salad is proving to be a summer salad hit and the great thing is that you can have it as a Starter or Main Course size ..
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
#caesarsalad #chickencaesarsalad #saladrecipe #summersalad #sussexpubs #sussexlife #lightlunch #dogfriendlypub #pubswithrooms #ashdownforest #tunbridgewellsmums #lunchwithfriends

Our Chicken Caesar Salad is proving to be a summer salad hit and the great thing is that you can have it as a Starter or Main Course size ..
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
#caesarsalad #chickencaesarsalad #saladrecipe #summersalad #sussexpubs #sussexlife #lightlunch #dogfriendlypub #pubswithrooms #ashdownforest #tunbridgewellsmums #lunchwithfriends
...

Whole Sea Bream stuffed with Fennel & Shallot served with a Pernod Sauce, Wilted Spinach and Sauté Potatoes
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
#fishdish #fishoftheday #dishoftheday #sussexlife #sussexlife #pubsofinstagram #publife #pubswithrooms #tunbridgewells #eastgrinstead #muddysussex #pubswithrooms #stayinapub #seabream #lunchwithfriends #lightlunch

Whole Sea Bream stuffed with Fennel & Shallot served with a Pernod Sauce, Wilted Spinach and Sauté Potatoes
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
#fishdish #fishoftheday #dishoftheday #sussexlife #sussexlife #pubsofinstagram #publife #pubswithrooms #tunbridgewells #eastgrinstead #muddysussex #pubswithrooms #stayinapub #seabream #lunchwithfriends #lightlunch
...

The sun has finally arrived making it the perfect day to introduce our delicious new summer salad.. Smoked Heritage Tomato, Buffalo Mozzarella & Baby Basil Caprese Salad - perfect as a starter or for a light lunch..

The sun has finally arrived making it the perfect day to introduce our delicious new summer salad.. Smoked Heritage Tomato, Buffalo Mozzarella & Baby Basil Caprese Salad - perfect as a starter or for a light lunch.. ...

To celebrate #EnglishWineWeek why not try our very popular local English Sparkling Wines from our friends @bluebellvineyard estates
•
The 2013 vintage Blanc de Blancs is crafted solely from Chardonnay grapes, delivering a refreshing aroma of lime and citrus blossoms, followed by crisp notes of gooseberry, elderflower, and peach.
•
Or the 2018 vintage Sparkling  Rosé contains 61% Pinot Noir, 39% Pinot Meunier.
•
This elegant Rosé has aromas of soft peach, wild strawberry, raspberry and rose hip on the nose, underpinned by plum, Turkish delight, nectarine and violet notes that give a rounded wine with a delicate, creamy finish.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
#englishsparklingwine #englishsparkling #englishwinewednesday #gbwine #sussexsparklingwine #sussex #sussexlife #pubsofinstagram #sussexwine #englishwinemaking #englishwineweek #sparklingwines #sparklingwinelovers #pubgarden

To celebrate #EnglishWineWeek why not try our very popular local English Sparkling Wines from our friends @bluebellvineyard estates

The 2013 vintage Blanc de Blancs is crafted solely from Chardonnay grapes, delivering a refreshing aroma of lime and citrus blossoms, followed by crisp notes of gooseberry, elderflower, and peach.

Or the 2018 vintage Sparkling Rosé contains 61% Pinot Noir, 39% Pinot Meunier.

This elegant Rosé has aromas of soft peach, wild strawberry, raspberry and rose hip on the nose, underpinned by plum, Turkish delight, nectarine and violet notes that give a rounded wine with a delicate, creamy finish.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
#englishsparklingwine #englishsparkling #englishwinewednesday #gbwine #sussexsparklingwine #sussex #sussexlife #pubsofinstagram #sussexwine #englishwinemaking #englishwineweek #sparklingwines #sparklingwinelovers #pubgarden
...

Dine, stay or getaway? You can do one or all with us here at The Dorset Arms.. Pop in for a pint or a delicious pub lunch or why not stay in Our Old School Cottage that’s looking lovely in the summer sunshine.
•
With its 6 double en-suite bedrooms ( we have dog-friendly options too) it is the perfect place to stay and enjoy our beautiful corner of Sussex.
•
Whether you are looking to explore the Ashdown Forest or head into Tunbridge Wells for some shopping in The Pantiles we are perfectly located for both.
•
Have lunch or dinner with us and then just a short stroll through the garden is The Old School Cottage with its big comfortable beds, en-suite bathrooms, TV, Wi-Fi - all the ingredients you need for a great stay.
•
With breakfast included in our room rates call now on 01892 770278 or book on-line.
#pubswithrooms #staycation #sussex #muddysussex #bedandbreakfast #tunbridgewellslife #ashdownforest #dogfriendlypub #localpub #minibreaks #weekendaway❤️ #b&b #englishpubs #christmaspartyideas #weekendgetaways #sussexlife #eastgrinstead #localpub #pubsofinstagram #englishpubs

Dine, stay or getaway? You can do one or all with us here at The Dorset Arms.. Pop in for a pint or a delicious pub lunch or why not stay in Our Old School Cottage that’s looking lovely in the summer sunshine.

With its 6 double en-suite bedrooms ( we have dog-friendly options too) it is the perfect place to stay and enjoy our beautiful corner of Sussex.

Whether you are looking to explore the Ashdown Forest or head into Tunbridge Wells for some shopping in The Pantiles we are perfectly located for both.

Have lunch or dinner with us and then just a short stroll through the garden is The Old School Cottage with its big comfortable beds, en-suite bathrooms, TV, Wi-Fi - all the ingredients you need for a great stay.

With breakfast included in our room rates call now on 01892 770278 or book on-line.
#pubswithrooms #staycation #sussex #muddysussex #bedandbreakfast #tunbridgewellslife #ashdownforest #dogfriendlypub #localpub #minibreaks #weekendaway❤️ #b&b #englishpubs #christmaspartyideas #weekendgetaways #sussexlife #eastgrinstead #localpub #pubsofinstagram #englishpubs
...

Find us

Visit the Dorset Arms

Find us nestled in the heart of the Sussex countryside on the edge of Ashdown Forest just a 15 minute drive from Royal Tunbridge Wells.

View Map
Opening Hours
Mon & Tue: 12:00 - 20:00
Wed - Sat:12:00 - 23:00
Sun:12:00 - 18:00
Kitchen Hours
Mon & Tue12:00 - 14:30
Wed - Fri:12:00 - 14:30
18:00 - 20:30
Sat:12:00 - 20:30
Sun:12:00 - 16:00

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. To find out more read our Cookies Policy.