The Mistley Thorn

Manningtree, Essex

A small inn on the river Stour that’s full of good things - fabulous food, lovely rooms, and staff who go the extra mile


8 rooms


Rooms sleep 2


This welcoming inn fits the Sawday bill perfectly – lovely owners with fingers dipped into delicious local pies. Their kitchen shop and cooking school stand four doors down the street; Lucca, their popular wood-fired pizzeria, waits in Manningtree. As for their inn, it stands on the high street and dates to 1746. Interiors have an airy feel, the mood is laid-back with a great little bar, the food is local and utterly delicious. Expect tongue-and-groove panelling, a roaring wood-burner, padded benches and a happy vibe. Nicely-priced rooms (two above the kitchen shop) have a similar feel: pretty fabrics, warm colours, crisp linen on comfy beds, REN lotions for power showers and double-ended baths. There’s good art, homemade shortbread and fresh fruit, too, while those at the front have views of the Stour estuary. As for the food, it’s delicious stuff, perhaps smoked haddock chowder, mussels with garlic and herbs, sticky toffee pudding. The Witchfinder General lived here, you can walk along the river to Dedham, the Beth Chatto Gardens are close. 


  • Hot tub
  • WiFi
  • Swimming pool
  • Mobile reception
  • Spa
  • Breakfast included
  • Open fire / woodburner
  • Bar
  • Parking on premises
  • Licensed premises
  • Free parking nearby
  • Meals available
  • Vegetarian meals
  • Paid parking nearby
  • Accessible by public transport
  • Wheelchair access
  • Limited mobility
  • Air conditioning
  • Relaxation areas
  • Garden
  • Tennis court
  • Pets welcome

Family friendly

  • Baby monitor
  • Children welcome
  • Books and toys
  • Babies welcome
  • Stair gates
  • High chair


  • Pub/bar within 3 miles
  • Restaurant within 3 miles
  • Shop within 3 miles


  • Bikes available
  • Food courses
  • Kayaking
  • Other courses
  • Sailing
  • Surfing
  • Wild swimming

& pricing

Booking information

No smoking
Smoking not permitted anywhere in the property.
Lunch from £4.95. Set lunch, 2 courses 12.50, 3 courses £15. Dinner, 3 courses, about £30.


Nightly price
from £110
Singles from £90. Dinner, B&B from £75 per person.
5 Doubles
From £110
3 Twin/doubles
From £110


We really enjoyed our stay at the Mistley Thorn, everything about it was great. Charming location, friendly, welcoming staff, lovely clean comfy room. And the relaxed atmosphere and excellent food just made it a brilliant weekend all round. We also ate at their Italian sister restaurant, also excellent!


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The neighbourhood

Local points of interest from David McKay & Sherri Singleton

  • The Mistley Thorn stands on the site of an older inn in which Matthew Hopkins, the notorious Witchfinder General, tried and condemned to death dozens of local women during the English Civil War
  • Mistley is famous for being the scene of a planned 18th Century salt-water spa development by Paymaster General Richard Rigby who enlisted Robert Adam to design The Mistley Towers of Mistley Church, the original bathhouse and Swan Fountain.
  • Mistley is also an excellent centre for walking lying as it does on the Essex Way, which extends from West Essex all the way to Harwich
  • The Mistley Thorn runs fantastic cookery workshops year round at The Mistley Kitchen which is in an adjacent Georgian chandlery. The Mistley Kitchen also sells fine wines, kitchenware, tabletop items and lifestyle goods.
  • Our sister restaurant, Lucca Enoteca, is located a short stroll along the river, in Manningtree High Street. Offering handmade wood-fired pizza, pasta and other Italian dishes in a relaxed atmosphere. Great all-Italian wine list too.