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One of the best Sunday lunches in the North East

Boy waiting for Sunday lunch

There’s nothing quite like a good old-fashioned Sunday roast and St Mary’s Inn has one of the best Sunday lunches to offer its diners.

St Mary's Inn, Stannington, Northumberland

Dating back to 1910, the inn, now a bed & breakfast, pub and restaurant, was once the administration block of St Mary’s Hospital, a former mental health facility until 1995.

One of the best Sunday lunches at St Mary's Inn

However our visit was just what the doctor ordered after a mild bout of chickenpox meant we’d been housebound all week! We couldn’t wait to get out and about in the fresh air. With Whitehouse Farm Centre close by, St Mary’s Inn offered the perfect pit-stop for our little family looking for a spot of lunch.

Starter at St Mary's Inn

Situated in the heart of a posh new housing development, the inn maintains charm and a rustic warm feel with plenty of traditional features. The building has been restored with love and style, with black and white photos and old hospital plans adorning its white brick masonry.

Dining at St Mary's Inn, Stannington

Brimming with history, you feel the warmth as soon as you walk through the door of this pretty little establishment and the staff couldn’t have been more welcoming.

Dining at St Mary's Inn, Stannington

It was clear from the hearty Sunday lunch menu that we were going to get traditional pub grub with nicely Northern Yorkshire puddings. There was even a special kids’ menu for little C.

One of the best Sunday lunches in the North East at St Mary's Inn, Stannington

The clever layout made the space intimate and really cosy for families. Large blue and purple cushions softened the old church pew that we were seated on and it was clear that staff were proud of the atmosphere they have created – and rightly so.

Sunday lunch

After ordering from the menu, it wasn’t long before we were tucking into our starters. H ordered a good old-fashioned prawn cocktail which was so good that he had a helping hand from little C in polishing it off. Cyrus had already waded his way through a portion of garlic sourdough bread.

Sunday lunch at St Mary's Inn

I opted for the goats’ cheese with red peppers and pesto smeared on sourdough toast. It was a simple, yet impressive dish which was full of flavour. It was delicious, my only criticism would be that there was perhaps a little too much pesto per portion.

Ice-cream at St Mary's Inn

The masterpiece was in our mains though. Who doesn’t love a roast dinner? It’s a classic dish that can be eaten no matter what the weather’s like outside!

Sticky toffee pudding at St Mary's Inn

We ordered roast chicken, roast beef and a child’s portion of chicken (which was not much smaller than the adult meal if at all). We also added some fries for good measure too.

Cheese board at St Mary's Inn

None of us were disappointed as our plates arrived jam-packed with mouth-watering meats, veggies, spuds, lashings of delicious gravy and just look at those Yorkies! While we are carnivores in our house, it was good to see there was a nut roast option on the menu too.

St Mary's Inn

While this fancy feast had us all stuffed, we were there to try a bit of everything and so ordered some desserts.

St Mary's Inn

Just desserts

Dark, sticky and treacley, my sticky toffee pudding was the perfect combination of sweetness and stodge. It’s the best I’ve had in a long time. H meanwhile ordered the cheese selection. He was helped along by little C, who had finished his ice cream and was eyeing up the crackers on daddy’s plate.

One thing’s for sure, with a trip to St Mary’s Inn, you’ll be guaranteed to be full once you leave. If you’re anything like little C, you’ll fall sleep in the car on the way back home too!

Our verdict

Ten out of 10 for food, service and ambient surroundings. It was definitely one of the best Sunday lunches we’ve had in a long time. We will be back and next time, we’ll tie it together with a visit to Whitehouse Farm too.

For some other great places offering some of the best Sunday lunches in the North East, click here.


Saffron and Cyrus is a Newcastle-based family lifestyle blog, covering diversity, self-care, days out, travel, reviews, recipes and more from our family life.
The blog is written by new mum over 40, Aranda, with input from hubby H and four-year-old Cyrus.

Find me on: Web | Twitter | Instagram | Facebook


  1. March 6, 2020 / 10:02 pm

    Your dish looks and sound delicious.

  2. Chelsea
    March 6, 2020 / 10:12 pm

    I love when historic buildings are refurbished into something new to serve the community, while still keep original charm!
    The food also looks amazing!

  3. Renee
    March 6, 2020 / 10:22 pm

    Looks like a great family trip! And a great meal!

  4. March 7, 2020 / 8:10 am

    Nice one you’ve got there.
    Gonna try it out sometime

  5. Michele
    March 8, 2020 / 3:49 am

    OMG! The food looks amazing… Well so does St Mary’s. I love places like this, that feels homey. Love it. Thank you for sharing.

  6. Maysz
    March 8, 2020 / 9:13 am

    The place looks good perfect for family bonding and the food looks yum! Great spot awesome photos!

  7. March 8, 2020 / 9:24 am

    The place looks so cozy. Love that homie vibe it has. And that food looks so delicious. Is a great family time.

  8. Shelley at BeyondPennies
    March 8, 2020 / 9:27 pm

    Love your photos, and the food looks amazing! Thank you for sharing.

  9. Neil Alvin
    March 8, 2020 / 11:48 pm

    Great article. This is something worth reading. Thanks for sharing. I learned a lot from you again.

  10. Vasundhra
    March 9, 2020 / 1:26 pm

    Your pictures are excellent! And it looks like you all had a great family day out 🙂 Thanks for sharing your story with us!

  11. aisasami
    March 9, 2020 / 3:34 pm

    What a fantastic place to enjoy any kind of meal. Glad that you enjoyed it!

  12. Lavern Moore
    March 20, 2020 / 8:26 pm

    Wow this food especially the roast looks so hearty. I l love how they played the food.

  13. Magen
    March 24, 2020 / 4:53 pm

    That food looks so yummy and the place is so cute!

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