Bear, High St, Bedford

Traditional town-centre pub that regained its original name again in December 2016. A wider choice of real ales is now available:  Greene King IPA, four changing cask beers, with Westons Old Rosie cider also on handpump. Lunches are available Mon-Sat. Call (01234) 630235.

Bluebell, Putnoe Lane, Bedford

This busy community pub in Putnoe reopened in March after extensive refurbishment. Landlords Karen and Richard offer Fuller’s London Pride and Greene King IPA, with lunches available daily except Monday. TV sports are very popular. Website:

Brewhouse and Kitchen, Bedford

Ben Pearson, head brewer at this new brewpub since it opened in June last year, left at the end of May to open B&K’s new Nottingham pub. He is succeeded in Bedford by Davide Callegari, a native of Milan, who took a masters degree in brewing at Nottingham University after working in the bar trade in Italy. The range of cask ales remains the same, although like Ben before him Davide will be able to make improvements here and there by tweaking the recipes.

Burnaby Arms, Stanley St, Bedford

The Fullers’ successor at the Burnaby is Will Seear, who may be better known locally in the club sector. We do not yet know how he may develop the business, but the pub currently offers Wells Eagle IPA, Young’s London Gold, Courage Directors and a guest ale that is not always from Charles Wells. Call (01234) 330056 or visit Facebook at theburnabyarmsbedford.

Ship, St Cuthberts St, Bedford

This old inn east of the town centre has been substantially refurbished with a new bar layout creating more customer space and direct access to the cabin bar at the front. There is a patio garden to the rear and a decked seating area outside at the front. Greene King IPA, Abbot and three guest ales are available.

White Horse, Newnham Ave, Bedford

This large suburban pub on the eastern outskirts of Russell Park reopened in May after a dose of refurbishment, with  Lucie & Stephen Fuller, who moved across town from the Burnaby Arms. So far it looks like the business as usual, but Lucie and Stephen bring a reputation for keeping excellent beer at the Burnaby. Courage Directors, Wells Eagle IPA, Young’s London Gold and a changing guest ale are served. Call (01234) 409306 or visit Facebook at whitehorsebedford.

Greyhound, Haynes

This popular community pub near the edge of the village at Northwood End was recently refurbished. The business is run by Corri Ann Burke and her team, which also operates the New Inn in Biggleswade with its own microbrewery and the Chequers in Old Stevenage. Greene King IPA and Abbot are served, plus a guest ale that is often from Biggleswade Brewhouse. There are separate lounge and public bars, plus a conservatory restaurant. Play equipment and pétanque are available in the garden.

Bedford Arms, Oakley

Welcome to Ben and Emma, recent arrivals at this large village inn. The single lounge and a conservatory offer dining throughout. Small groups can meet in private nooks and side areas, while space for large parties can be booked. The two gardens include a children's play area. Wells Eagle IPA is joined on the pumps by two changing ales from the Charles Wells guest list. The food menu is creative, prepared with locally sourced materials whenever possible, and there is a choice of roast lunches on Sunday. Book online to reserve a table at busy times. Ben and Emma also run the Hare & Hounds at Old Warden with on-site managers.

Fordham Arms, Sharnbrook

Many years ago it was the station hotel, but this prominent pub on Templars Way has been reopened by local businessman Bobby Gill as a modernised free house bar and bistro. Fuller’s London Pride, Sharp’s Doom Bar and Wells Eagle IPA are available, with a changing guest ale to come. Smart pub food is served for lunch, with a broader evening menu, mainly English dishes with a Mediterranean or New World twist. Fresh, locally sourced ingredients are used wherever possible. Large and small private parties can be accommodated.

New Inn, Wymington

Welcome to new landlord Jody McKinnon at this now free house near our northern border. It is a family concern with Jody’s mother and sister Corrie. The pub now has 10 handpumps offering Greene King IPA, Abbot, regular beers from Batemans and Oakham, and a varied range of guest ales. A choice of real ciders and perries is also served direct from boxes in the cellar. Home-cooked, traditional pub lunches and evening meals are available except on Sun eve. There is a charity quiz every month and occasional acoustic music nights. A new website is being developed, but meanwhile call 01933 317618 or follow it on Facebook@newinnwymington

Chequers, Yelden

This former village inn closed last December for redevelopment of the site. Plans have been submitted to build a number of houses on the large pub garden, but a new refurbished pub will eventually reopen in part of the old buildings. Although the Chequers has stood here for centuries, what we see today is much more modern, having replaced the old building destroyed by fire. 
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