Review: Bec Rural Retreat in Hertfordshire

Bethnal & Bec are set in the pretty village of Cottered, less than a 20 minute drive from Hitchin, but it could have been a world away…

Sunday lunch at The Bull in Cottered

We started our time away with food. The Bull in Cottered was a surprisingly fab find. Just a stone’s throw from our cosy bolthole, The Bull serves excellent pub grub (including a rather delicious Sunday lunch) and the staff couldn’t have been friendlier or more attentive.

Home sweet home at Bec – a rural retreat in Hertfordshire

After lunch it was time to check in to our home for the night. Nestled away off the main road, parking is in a car port opposite the properties. This may be a converted barn, but there is nothing rural about the interior (except a handy stash of wellies to borrow!).

A little bit of London in rural Hertfordshire

Earning it’s name from Tooting Bec, Bec’s interior was certainly much closer to it’s London namesake than rural Hertfordshire. Although urban and trend, it’s as peaceful inside as the calming, rural view outside.

A view of the countryside from our bath for two

Bec looks out onto fields with Cromer Windmill in the distance. There are details of local Hertfordshire walks – some of which are on the doorstep. You can walk to Church Farm in Ardeley (and the Jolly Waggoners pub) along local footpaths or explore Cromer Windmill.

Pampering in the comfort of our home

Vicky & Chris also provide details of local therapists for some pampering. We booked treatments with Emma – a massage for the hubby and pedicure for me. Whilst we sipped Champagne and began to unwind we were totally spoilt in the comfort of our cosy little home.

Private hot tub heated on arrival

The sun now set, we had to test out the hot tub, for the sake of a full and complete review of course! The outdoor hot tub is ready for you to use on arrival and was perfect even on a slightly cool January evening.

Bec offers a fully stocked pantry for you to enjoy as well as a small but well-equipped kitchen. There are some interesting and unusual items on offer from snacks to cooking ingredients and a huge range of frozen ready meals and sides.

Still stuffed from our Sunday lunch, we tucked in to some treats we’d brought along as well as an item or two from the pantry. The items are reasonably priced and an inventory is provided to help you keep track of what you have.

Complimentary breakfast goodies

As well as the pantry, some complimentary food and drink items are included in your stay. At the time of writing, it including basics like tea, coffee and olive oil, not forgetting the gin and whiskey decanters for you to enjoy! Plus delicious bacon, Buntingford Bakery bread and freshly laid duck eggs for breakfast. Perfect.

And relax….

If all that wasn’t enough indulgence, we settled down to watch a film on Netflix. Via a projector and screen. With a tub of ice cream. In bed. And it didn’t have to be Disney Pixar or back to back episodes of Peppa Pig.

I woke up the next morning after an undisturbed night’s sleep feeling like a new person. Ready to face the new week we headed off back to the big smoke (with some Church Farm sausages purchased for our dinner).

Special Offer

Here’s a special offer for readers of This Hitchin Mummy:

Quote HMummy when booking your stay at Bethnal & Bec to receive two steaks and a bottle of wine on arrival.

To take advantage of this special offer, click here to book.

More Information

Bethnal & Bec are situated in the village of Cottered in rural Hertfordshire. A perfect retreat and just a short trip from London, Cambridge, the A1, M11 and M25. 

Bethnal & Bec are for adults only, although well behaved dogs are welcome in Bethnal.

Bec has a fully stocked pantry, freezer and drinks cabinet. Store-cupboard staples are included in the price, and you simply settle-up at the end of your stay for whatever else you have enjoyed. Note: the pantry list is just a guide and is dependent on stock availability.

Prices start from £350 for a two night weekend break at Bec including use of a private hot tub and selected pantry items. One night stays are also available midweek and on Sundays for £195 – perfect for a quick night away to recharge! See for latest prices and availability.

For more info email or visit

Disclaimer: This is an honest review written in exchange for a night’s accommodation.