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The Angel Hotel in Bury St Edmunds set for £750,000 revamp with nod to Charles Dickens

A historic Bury St Edmunds hotel is closing the door to its ground floors for the first time in more than 50 years for a £750,000 refurbishment.

The revamp at The Angel Hotel started today (January 9) and includes the reception, bar, brasserie, restaurant and lounge.

It will re-open in spring and the refurbishment will pay homage to the building’s Georgian heritage and characters from its past including author Charles Dickens, who stayed at the hotel.

The Angel Hotel, in Bury St Edmunds. (6420476)
The Angel Hotel, in Bury St Edmunds. (6420476)

The 77-room ivy-clad coaching inn, on Angel Hill, is part of Gough Hotels.

Owner Robert Gough said: “The Angel plays a big part in the history of Bury St Edmunds.

“It’s iconic but we did think it was time for a little bit of a face lift.

“Our plans for the refurbishment draw inspiration from the past with a small nod to Charles Dickens, who mentioned The Angel in The Pickwick Papers.

“We want to make sure our new look and feel has something for everyone as we continue to welcome friends of The Angel both old and new.

“It’s going to be a period of change but we look forward to bringing the character of the building and those who have visited to life.”

He said they will also be appointing a head chef who will ‘bring their own unique personality to the menu which will focus on seasonality and provenance’.

The bar team will also be creating a new cocktail menu.

During the refurbishment, the hotel will be offering a breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea and dinner service in a temporary location in the building and rooms will be available as normal.

According to tourism group Bury St Edmunds and Beyond, Dickens first stayed at The Angel in 1835 as a journalist for the Morning Chronicle.

He returned to the hotel in 1859 and 1861 to read to an audience at the nearby Athenaeum, staying in what is now room 215 and known as the Charles Dickens Suite.

Scenes for a new film ‘The Personal History of David Copperfield’ based on Dickens’ novel were shot on the Angel Hill area and at The Theatre Royal in July.

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