Latest News - News From 2016 / 2015

Granny Knows Best - The Seaton Lane Inn and Abbeyfield celebrate British Pie Week


Grandma is said to always know best, and The Seaton Lane Inn is setting out to prove the adage with the launch of a competition to track down the perfect pie.

The Seaton Lane Inn has teamed up with older people’s charity, The Abbeyfield Society, to hunt out the most traditional and imaginative recipes in celebration of British Pie Week taking place between March 6-12.

Grandparents, older people and Abbeyfield residents are being asked to play their part in the quest to search out the tastiest time-honoured and home-grown pie recipes.

From formulations unique to the North East to sweet and savoury classics, it is hoped the over-65s will get behind what promises to be a delicious celebration of culinary know-how and British food heritage, that’s also set to raise funds for the national Abbeyfield charity.

The star recipe as judged by The Seaton Lane Inn's expert team of chefs, will not only be championed as a British Pie Week special on both the inns’ home-cooked menus, but see money raised from sales going direct to Abbeyfield to help support its work to ease loneliness in older people.

The victor will win a three-course meal for two at The Seaton Lane Inn in the village of Seaton, just minutes from the county’s dramatic heritage coast.

The competition is part of a wider Granny Knows Best campaign being rolled out nationally by Abbeyfield, honouring the older generations’ culinary expertise and excellence.

The Seaton Lane Inn general manager, Paul Brown said: “When it comes to pies, it really is true that granny knows best. We’re hoping people will get in touch with us with recipes that will take diners back to the flavours and textures they remember from childhood.

“We’re looking for recipes for pies made the traditional way, using traditional techniques and ingredients – whether they’re sweet or savoury – and with that extra dollop of love that goes into a recipe that’s been passed down and eaten by generations.

“We’re looking forward to linking up with Abbeyfield for the project and we’re excited to see what our senior cooks come up with to share with diners.”

Abbeyfield’s divisional director for the north Teresa Parker said: “This is a fantastic chance to revive once-loved pie recipes, celebrate all that’s good about North East food and drink, bring people together, and get Abbeyfield residents and older members of our communities cooking and hopefully having lots of fun with family and friends.

 “Pies are as quintessentially British as fish and chips and roast beef and Yorkshire pudding, and we want to celebrate everything that is good about the sort of old-fashioned, homely cooking that has brought families together for generations.

“Even better, this competition won’t just raise awareness about our proud culinary heritage, but much needed funds for Abbeyfield so we can continue to ensure that people’s golden years are among the happiest of their lives.” 

Teresa added: “We’re delighted with the support we’re receiving from The Seaton Lane Inn, and their recognition of the input older people have in society. Projects like this help to get older people out into the community, which enriches their lives. It also reminds them that they are wanted and needed, and still have an important role to play.

“We’re looking forward to practising the recipes in our kitchens here at Abbeyfield before they are submitted – and of course feasting on the results.”

If you are aged 65 and over you can submit your pie recipe in person to The Seaton Inn on Seaton Lane in Seaton; by email to or by post, addressed to Paul Brown, The Seaton Inn, Seaton Lane, Seaton, Co Durham SR7 0LP.

The closing date for entries is Thursday March 2.


The Seaton Lane Inn's 'Try Gin-uary' is the perfect tonic to 'Dry January'


If the thought of Dry January leaves you cold, award-winning The Seaton Lane Inn has the perfect tonic with their Try ‘Ginuary’ local craft gin showcase. 

The Seaton Lane Inn is capturing the spirit of the gin renaissance with by turning the spotlight on pioneering local gin distillers throughout January, to bring something different to their customers’ gin and tonic. 

The inn will feature gins distilled nearby to encourage customers to put a different gin in their glass throughout January.

Already well-known for the choice and quality of the local and craft ales The Seaton Lane Inn serves, it is now giving spirit lovers and gin newbies the opportunity to sample some of the best gins in the North and to work their way through a hand picked selection of lesser-known gin varieties.  

David Walker of The Inn Collection Group which owns The Seaton Lane Inn said: “We’re trying to make January a little less blue by trying something that’s more of a tonic, with a small collection of local craft gins that we’ve tasted and loved. What’s more, they’re all distilled in locations close to our inns. 

“Gin is so quintessentially British, and with so many different taste variations now available, the possibilities for flavours from gin seem endless, we’re keen to showcase some directly from our little region of the world.  

“People are trying different garnishes too – ice and a slice of lemon no longer cuts the mustard and there are plenty of premium mixers upping their game to support the in-gin boom.”

Walter Riddell of Hepple Gin said: “We are thrilled that Hepple has been included in The Seaton Lane Inn's Ginuary line up. We make our gin rather differently, using young green juniper sourced from the hills around Hepple near Rothbury in Northumberland. 

“We use two separate distillation systems and a high-pressure extraction system to bring a crisp freshness not found in any conventionally made gin. Because of the complexity of our distillery process and our exacting harvesting regime, we only make a small quantity of Hepple, our only product.”

The Seaton Lane Inn's Try Ginuary will be showcasing: 

  • Durham Gin -  a small batch gin distilled in a 400 litre copper pot still called Lily, using traditional methods. Only a couple of hundred bottles are made from each batch and are labelled by hand. 
  • Hepple Gin – north Northumberland produced gin that’s vacuum distilled at lower temperatures to capture more flavour, including the young green juniper gathered from the Hepple Estate. 
  • Masons Yorkshire Gin – distilled slowly and traditionally in two 200-litre stills called Steve and Lefty, the first gin to be distilled in Yorkshire contains juniper and citrus flavours. 
  • Poetic License – flavoured with juniper and cardamom spice, lemon, lime and eucalyptus, this is a fresh scented gin that also contains a host of secret botanicals. 

Tasters will be able to try the different garnishes and serving suggestions recommended by the distillers to bring out the best in their gins.

Dave said: “We’re initially offering the craft gins on a limited basis during January but if they prove popular, we’ll be looking to put them behind the bar full time. 

New manager for Seaton Lane Inn!

The Seaton Lane Inn, part of the Inn Collection, has appointed a new general manager.
Paul Brown, 39, joins The Seaton Lane Inn after 21 years’ experience in the pub industry and having previously managing sister inn, The Kings Head Newton under Roseberry in North Yorkshire for three years.
Paul said: “I’m thrilled with the new challenge of running the Seaton Lane Inn and building up the range of offers for our customers. We’ve always offered the sports channels and this will continue – but we are really upping the drinks and food offers too.”
"There will be strong focus on traditional, well-known and new cask ales, which are proving popular with the locals!”
Other plans include a full schedule of events throughout the week to keep people entertained, including quiz nights, and revamping the menu.


We're Dementia Friends at The Seaton Lane Inn


Following the success of the Dementia Awareness training over at our sister Inn, The Kingslodge, in Durham, we're proud to announce that our staff have pledged to be Dementia Friends after undergoing the Dementia Awareness training provided by the wonderful team at the North East Alzheimer’s branch in Chester-le-Street.

This hour long introductory session taught us that dementia isn't actually a natural part of the ageing process, but a disease like any other which attacks the brain. 

In order to best serve our customers who are living with dementia, we understand that patience is key; slowing down our speech, listening and allowing our treasured guests the time they need to make their own decisions. 

Whilst there may be no cure as yet for dementia, we are certainly able to play our small part in making our guests feel Welcome and at home in our Inn.

And a huge thank you to Rowena Carr for taking the time to deliver the session. 

Please look out for our staff wearing our dementia badges, and if we can be of assistance don't hesitate to ask.