The Lifeboat Inn

Thornham, Norfolk

Under big skies with salt marshes and the sea beyond, a homely inn with scrumptious food, comfy rooms


13 rooms


Rooms sleep 2


You’re in heaven here, under the big skies of Norfolk’s north coast with its sweeping salt marshes, nature reserves and sandy beaches. The Lifeboat, newly captained by Agellus, sails a smooth and stylish path with glowing fires, scrumptious seafood and the comfiest of rooms. Tucked down a hidden lane in pretty Thornham, the inn’s darkly-beamed bar conjures a smugglers retreat, while the conservatory and restaurant are light, bright and contemporary. Settle by a crackling fire with a pint of Woodforde’s Wherry and plan a day’s bird- or seal-spotting. In summer, the sun-trap courtyard beckons, or book one of two cedar wood pavilions for private dining. Wherever you settle, the menu will tempt you with seasonal specials, cream teas, hearty sandwiches and children’s treats. Our Brancaster moules were the juiciest and tastiest we’ve eaten, and where else could you find roast beef in a Yorkshire pudding with horseradish sauce and a jug of gravy as a (bargain-priced) bar snack? Bedrooms (most are upstairs, one is on the ground floor) are wonderfully comfy with colour schemes that reflect the long landscape views. Bathrooms sparkle, and breakfasts are a treat.


  • Hot tub
  • WiFi
  • Swimming pool
  • Mobile reception
  • Spa
  • Breakfast included
  • Open fire / woodburner
  • Hob
  • Bar
  • Parking on premises
  • Barbecue
  • Licensed premises
  • Free parking nearby
  • Meals available
  • Vegetarian meals
  • Paid parking nearby
  • Breakfast available
  • Accessible by public transport
  • Central heating
  • Wheelchair access
  • Limited mobility
  • Air conditioning
  • Relaxation areas
  • Garden
  • Tennis court
  • No smoking
  • Credit cards
  • Working farm
  • Owner has pets
  • 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

Check in
Check out
Booking restrictions
Minimum stay: 2 nights at weekends.
No smoking
Smoking not permitted anywhere in the property.

Dog blanket and bowl with treats in room on arrival. Treats behind the bar and a sausage for breakfast.

Dogs £10 per dog per night. Max. 2.

Walks in marshes, on nearby beaches & on Thornham Harbour. Four-legged guests gallery on the website

Starters from £6.25. Lunch from £6.50. Dinner from £9.95.


Nightly price
from £145
Dinner, B&B £145-£215 per person. Extra bed/sofabed available £25 per person per night.
13 Doubles
From £145


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The neighbourhood

Local points of interest from Anita Rakauskaite Norfolk

  • Thornham - nestled along the coastline, close to RSPB nature reserves, between Brancaster and Wells. In the distance, across the marsh, the North Sea can be seen.
  • Sandringham Estate - the Queen’s own country estate. For much of the year, it is possible to explore the house, museum and gardens with its pretty lake, shrubbery and flowerbeds.
  • Norfolk Lavender in Heacham - contains world famous lavender gardens as well as an oil distillery, Hornbeam Maze and for children, a petting barn.
  • RSPB Titchwell - very popular bird reserve situated only one mile away from The Lifeboat. It has a visitor centre, shop and cafe.
  • Holkham Hall - 18th-century country house, one of the magnificent houses in England, with wonderful paintings and furnishings to be seen.
  • Coal Barn - set in Thornham harbour only a short walk away from The Lifeboat. It's a unique building used by smugglers to off-load their tobacco, wool, tea and alcohol in the 18th century. Recently it was used in the BBC production of Great Expectations.