Handsome centrepiece of a handsome village, the Royal Oak sits at its crossroads – the quintessential country inn. The bar is a back-in-time proposition of original checkerboard tiles, beams, brick and panelling, four hearths ablaze, offering superb pints of Good Old Boy and Mr Chubbs from the West Berkshire Brewery. But time has not stood still. The lobby’s leather sofas and gleaming wooden floors, made homely by patterned rugs, project a smartness that carries through to the restaurant’s terracotta reds and chunky beech furnishings where the likes of five-spiced duck salad with chicory, cucumber and sweet chilli and beetroot risotto, crispy sage and parmesan reflect an inventive use of local ingredients. Stay over and snuggle down in big comfy bedrooms, some classically kitted out with antiques and rich fabrics, others more contemporary. Choose between pretty views across the square or the walled garden; the quietest rooms are at the back and three are in the old staff house. A garden ringed with herbs, shrubs and trellises includes smart wicker seating and is a boon for summer. Pub quizzes and family suppers underlie links to the community.