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News

Chefs Dish of the Month – May

Bramley Apple and Blackberry Crumble with Vanilla Bean Ice Cream 

Prep time – 20 mins. 

Cooking time 40 mins.   

Ingredients:    

8 x Bramley apples

4 x punnets of blackberries

1 x clove

1 x tsp mixed spice

1 x tsp cinnamon spice

1 x tsp ground ginger

100ml x water

1 x vanilla pod

50g x brown sugar

100g unsalted butter

100g castor sugar

200g plain flour   

 

Method:  

  1. Peel and core the apples
  2. Place apples in a saucepan with all the spices, water and vanilla and bring to a simmer – cook until tender
  3. Take off the heat and add the blackberries so they slowly bleed into the apple mixture
  4. Meanwhile crumb the butter, sugar and flour together
  5. Place on a baking tray and bake the mixture in an oven for 15 mins at 160°C (until it looks like a large biscuit)
  6. Set aside to cool, then break up into small pieces for the crumble topping
  7. Take 8 large ramekins (or 1 large cake tin) and fill ¾ of the way up with apple and blackberry mixture
  8. Top with crumble, and place in an oven for 10 mins at 180°C
  9. Serve with either clotted cream or vanilla ice cream or both!  
News

We’re shortlisted in top national awards

We’re shortlisted in top national awards

We’ve been overwhelmed with the number of awards we’ve picked up over the past year. And now we’re being shortlisted for one of the UK’s top titles.

This week, we were told that Ellingham Hall will be vying for a coveted award in this year’s Conference & Hospitality Show (CHS) Awards.

We have been shortlisted as one of finalists in the Best Independent Hotel/Venue category which we have been advised was the busiest category.

The venue re-launched its Corporate offering last summer and received some fantastic feedback at their VIP Corporate Showcase in November.

Corporate Sales and Marketing Manager, Lynn Sanderson, said she was delighted to find out about the shortlisting at this week’s CHS expo in Leeds.

“We are the only North East venue shortlisted for this award,” she said. “We are delighted. There are only 11 venues who made the shortlist, so to be considered one of the best in the entire country is fantastic. We have developed some great relationships with corporate clients since our re-launch and their support with our award submission was greatly appreciated”

We’ll find out if we pick up the title at a glittering awards ceremony in Leeds on June 6, we are very excited to find out the result!”

News

Chefs Dish of the Month

Passion Fruit Crème Brûlée and Pine Nut Shortbread

Prep Time – 30 mins

Cook Time – 20 mins

 

Ingredients: (Serves 6)

1 pint double cream

8 x egg yolk

50g caster sugar

2 x vanilla pods

2 x teaspoons of sugar

2 x passion fruit (seeds only)

125g butter

55g caster sugar

180g plain flour

50g chopped pine nuts

 

Method:

  1. Heat the oven to 120°C
  2. Bring the cream and scraped vanilla pods to the boil
  3. Whisk eggs yolk with sugar until pale
  4. Slowly add the warmed cream to egg mixture, return to the pan and slowly bring to the boil
  5. Add passion fruit seeds and pour into 6 ramekins
  6. Place in a bain-marie and bake for 30 minutes until the cream and egg mixture has a slight wobble
  7. For the shortbread, cream the butter and sugar together
  8. Add the flour and rest for 10 minutes
  9. Cut out into finger shapes, prick with a fork and bake for 15 minutes
  10. Sprinkle sugar on the top of set Crème Brûlée and blow torch until sugar bubbles and turns brown
Events

Families had an ‘eggciting’ time!

We had a cracking day when families from across the region joined us to celebrate Easter at our Easter Eggstravaganza Family event.

Children from as young as two, up to twelve, had a fun-packed time and also got the chance to meet the Easter Bunny during the exciting day of activities.

Our chapel was the place to be for the obligatory egg decorating competition, and we received some fantastic entries from all age groups. We were delighted to award 11-year-old Gabriella as the winner with her fantastic peacock egg creation.

There were also seven different craft stations for the little ones (and, let’s be honest some parents too) to join in with, including paper plate decorating, Easter card making and build a bunny.

After a tasty barbecue lunch, the afternoon started with an Easter canvas making workshop run by Jayne Stafford from The Creation Station. There were many different designs with some parents helping little ones to use their painted hands and feet to create some fantastic images.

Face-painting was also on offer throughout the day and most children sported fun quirky designs thanks to Sue Parker at Painted Face.

Our young guests then got the chance to take part in a woodland egg hunt in our beautiful scenic grounds. They were joined by parents who helped them to work out the clues, hidden within eggs. Children had 6 coloured plastic eggs to collect, before returning them to the Easter bunny to receive a novelty chocolate egg.

Lynn Sanderson, Corporate Sales and Marketing Manager, said it was a great day.
She said: “The sun was shining, and we had a lovely time. There were lots going on and parents said they really enjoyed being here at the Hall because there was so much for their children to enjoy in a beautiful setting. This is our first family event this year at the Hall, and we are looking forward to our next event during the summer holidays.”

Photos from the day. Please click on the image to enlarge

News

Ben appointed as Head of Maintenance

We are delighted to announce that we’ve appointed Ben Larson as Head of Maintenance! Ben has been with us for four years and helps look after the grounds and Hall.

Ben was given the promotion from his job as Maintenance Engineer after our previous Head of Maintenance moved to new pastures.
We were very pleased when Ben said he would take the step up.

Ben, a local resident his whole life, has had a varied career including working as a ground worker, delivery driver and farmhand before coming to work at Ellingham Hall. Not only does he look after the Hall and grounds but also looks after its sister venue Lemmington Hall too.

We caught up with Ben to find out how he is finding his new role. He said: “I really enjoy working at Ellingham Hall. I love the fact every day is different. At the moment I’m fitting new door locks, but last week I was decorating three bedrooms and fitting new windows.
“It’s a lovely place to work, in fact it’s the best place I’ve worked. I fix most things along with the maintenance team, including plumbing. As well as the fabric of the building, we’re responsible for the security and safety of guests and staff here.”

As an essential part of the team that works behind the scenes, we were delighted when Ben agreed to be promoted. Like the rest of our family, he’s a hard worker and we are thrilled that he enjoys his work.

News

Chefs Dish of the Month

Pan roasted fillet of North Sea hake served with a light curry and mussel broth and chargrilled purple sprouting broccoli

 

Prep Time: 40 mins

Cook Time: 30 mins

 

Ingredients: (Serves 4)     

4 x 220g hake fillet portions

500g purple sprouting broccoli

200g diced root vegetables

1kg fresh local mussels

2 x teaspoons of curry powder

1 x garlic clove

200ml white wine

100ml coconut cream

Pinch of saffron

Fresh coriander

Salt and pepper  

 

Method

  1. Pan fry the root vegetables, garlic and curry powder in olive oil until soft.
  2. Add cleaned mussels, white wine and cover with a lid until all mussels open.
  3. Stir in saffron, coconut milk and fresh coriander then bring to the boil and set aside and keep warm.
  4. Heat olive oil in a frying pan and place hake skin side down. Fry until the fillet is cooked half way (approx. 4-5 mins), then turn over and continue to cook until the fillet is tender to touch.
  5. Season the purple sprouting broccoli with salt, pepper and butter then place on a char grill or hot grill for about 4 to 5 mins until coloured.
  6. Pour the mussel broth into a bowl then place fish on the top and place broccoli around the fish to serve. 
About

Community at our Heart

COMMUNITY AT OUR HEART

We like to make sure that we do everything possible to improve the lives of anyone who has contact with Ellingham Hall.

And while that’s a very clear foundation within our core values for visitors, guests, wedding couples and corporate clients, it also extends to the wider community in which we are situated.

Being well known within the county of Northumberland, we believe it is important that as part of our corporate governance we are instrumental in protecting and improving the beautiful, historic rural community we are proud to be part of.

There are several key issues in which we have taken a key role in helping our neighbourhood.

 

Water Improvement

When Ellingham Hall’s owners bought the Hall, the village’s sewerage system was an outdated septic tank that overflowed and flushed sewage down the stream within the Hall’s grounds. This not only affected villagers, but it also had an adverse effect on wildlife.

A meeting was arranged by our owner Aidan Ruff with local residents, water and river authorities, council representatives and environmental health departments to drive forward an urgent update of the system.

After two hours, a plan was made, and it took only 12 months to find the funding. As a result, the new system not only produces clean water that meets current standards, but wildlife has now returned to the stream and grounds.

 

Our Environment

As well as looking after the water for our village, the work we carried out has enabled us to offer fresh water direct from the local spring which was part of the old Ellingham Estate and now run by Northumbrian Water to be bottled for visitors to enjoy. Being a sustainable source, it also means we do not have to rely on buying in bottled water, which means a reduction in plastics and vehicles coming into the village as well as their emissions.

Guests are also treated to tasting our own homegrown herbs and fruit when they come to Ellingham Hall. We recently introduced a herb garden as part of plans to grow our own produce, which is currently being upgraded. As well as garlic, rosemary, mint and thyme, we also grow our own rhubarb and have many fruit trees, including apple, plum and pear. All of this produce is used by our award-winning Head Chef for his culinary creations and helps reduce our need to transport ingredients, which are also fresher so better tasting!

Ellingham Hall also provides its central heating and hot water through a biomass system. Although this was a considerable investment, we believe this is better for our local and the wider environment because it is a low-carbon option and reduces our emissions. We also use fuel from local suppliers saving on carbon output.

We also have a conservation project that includes continual investment in the grounds to preserve nature and wildlife. In particular, our tree planting programme will be further extended into our next phase of development at our sister venue Lemmington Hall.

We have a recycling point for cardboard, glass and plastics and we’ve banned plastic straw use.

Low energy lighting is also used throughout the entire site and has been since CFL and then LED bulbs became available.

 

High Speed Broadband

As a rural business, we enjoy many benefits, but one area that is an issue for any business or resident within the UK’s countryside is connectivity. Whilst we were able to access the Internet, it was painfully slow via six aged lines.

As the village’s cables run through our grounds, our owners Aidan and Helen negotiated with BT/Openreach to install a high-speed cabinet within the estate to allow Open Reach and Alncom to install two high speed broadband lines. We also provided the power and helped with the legal work to speed up the process, which has allowed villagers to enjoy fast broadband.

The second phase of this work was the installation of a roof antenna to allow local farms and anyone in nearby villages of up to 5 miles away to access high speed broadband.

As a ‘thank you’ for the ease in which the upgrade was carried out, Open Reach has offered to put in high speed lines to our new sister venue, Lemmington Hall.

See recent press article about the work via link below https://www.northumberlandgazette.co.uk/news/northumberland-firm-delivers-broadband-solutions-1-9413359

 

Better Connectivity

Rural Northumberland is a beautiful, unspoiled county, but road connections are now very outdated and in need of modernisation. Having better connectivity will not only make it easier to travel, but opens the county to further inward investment, which will create more jobs.

Our owner, Aidan, has worked closely with local MP Anne-Marie Trevelyan and a campaign to dual the A1 north of Morpeth to Ellingham. Consultations are now taking place after the money for the project was allocated by the Department of Transport. There is a continuing campaign to dual the A1 right to the Scottish Border, and this will help broaden the appeal of venues such as Ellingham to a wider customer base, which will protect and create jobs as well as improve potential future investment.

The work we have carried out so far shows that our business focus is far wider than providing a venue for guests, but we are part of our community. As well as providing employment in a rural area, we are also keen to protect the interests of our community and the environment both now and in the future.

About

Two Heads are Better than One!

It’s only the second month of the year, but we’re starting 2019 on a high!

We’re delighted to officially welcome two new members to our growing team – and we’ve also recently scooped another award.

Firstly, we are delighted that Lynn Sanderson and Rachel Barlow have joined our team in two posts that we have created to help boost our future growth.

Lynn has joined our team as Corporate Sales and Marketing Manager and is looking forward to arranging events for businesses and private parties.

Whether it is for a product launch, conference, team-building or special meetings and events, Lynn will be going out across the region to explain just why Ellingham Hall is the perfect venue.
She says, “Unlike a hotel, if you arrange business events at Ellingham Hall you won’t have to share the venue with other delegates. The exclusivity and flexibility are what differentiate Ellingham from other venues.

“I’m looking forward to meeting businesses across the region and I’m sure they will be excited by what we have to offer.”

Lynn has worked in the events industry for seven years and has been involved in sales and marketing roles in various sectors for 18.

As well as the corporate market, Lynn will be arranging a calendar of events at the Hall to provide opportunities for people to come and enjoy the Hall and its wonderful surroundings, as well as the amazing food from our award-winning chef.

In the past, the only way to enjoy the Hall was to be invited as part of a wedding party, but with events including Sunday Lunch for Mother’s Day, an Easter family fun day and a Father’s Day laser clay experience, we’re looking forward to welcoming even more guests throughout the year.

In January Rachel was appointed as Wedding Marketing and Communications Manager to raise further awareness for Ellingham’s first-class wedding service, in the North East and beyond.

Rachel has been working in the marketing and events sector for almost 10 years now and over the last two years has worked exclusively in the wedding industry.

She says, “It’s so great to be starting at a venue which boasts so many gorgeous spaces and with a multi-award winning and experienced team alongside me.

“Ellingham Hall is such a beautiful venue both inside and out. From rooftop terraces and cascading waterfalls, to our spacious reception rooms and historic Chapel, it’s a joy to be part of something really special.”

It’s going to be an exciting year, and we can’t wait to welcome you.

On a final note, we were officially named Northumberland’s Most Outstanding Luxury Wedding Venue in the Global Luxury Hotel & Spa Awards 2019, which is organised by exclusive magazine Lux Life.

Lynn, Anthony & Rachel

About

Ellingham Hall crowned Northumberland’s Most Outstanding Luxury Wedding Venue

Northumberland’s Ellingham Hall has been voted the county’s Most Outstanding Luxury Wedding Venue by a select panel of judges.

It was given the title in the 2019 Global Luxury Hotel & Spa Awards – and it comes just months after the exclusive-use venue’s wedding co-ordinator picked up an accolade as being the North East’s best co-ordinator.
Award organisers say they were created to recognise companies, brands and individuals who are “excelling in the ever-growing industry of luxury hospitality – those who go above and beyond to exemplify experiences clients are seeking when looking for their latest getaway or luxury venue”.

Rachel Barlow, Ellingham Hall’s new Weddings Marketing and Communications Manager, said she was delighted that the venue had scooped the award.
“The judges make the decision based on venues across the county. There isn’t a nomination procedure, they judge all venues, so it was a really pleasant surprise to be given this award,” she said.

General Manager Anthony Hunter added: “We were delighted when our Wedding Co-ordinator, Wendy, was named the North East’s best co-ordinator last autumn, and this is a testament to what a great team we have here. We’ve made a substantial investment in the venue, refurbishing bedrooms, the drawing room, and adding even more luxury touches.”

The news comes just as the hall’s owners are focusing on new business from the corporate and events sector, which Anthony said would help increase job opportunities and further grow the business.

News

Our General Manager Anthony celebrates 10th year in the post!

Our General Manager Anthony has celebrated his 10th year in the post. So, we thought we’d catch up with him and find out more about his past decade.

 

What have been the highlights of 2018 for Ellingham Hall?

There are three things that stand out: we’ve had our busiest ever summer with weddings! Our Head of Weddings, Wendy, was named Wedding Co-ordinator of the Year in the North of England Wedding Awards. And we officially launched the venue for corporate events. It has been very eventful, but I’ve enjoyed it.

 

What has been your biggest challenge this year?

As this has been the busiest summer, the biggest challenge has been on logistics. It was essential to ensure our guests’ expectations were met or exceeded, but it was equally important to look after and support our team.

 

What has been your proudest moment?

It was when Wendy, our Head of Weddings won her award! As well as being proud of her, I was also proud of the fact the whole team had been recognised for the service we deliver. We pride ourselves on our service, and this award highlighted that effort.

 

What are you currently working on?

I’m currently working on an exciting new venture! We will be launching our sister venue Lemmington Hall, as an exclusive-use event space next year, so I’ll be very busy with that. We are also arranging a calendar of events to enable the public to experience Ellingham Hall. As an exclusive-use venue, there isn’t the same chance to visit like you can with a hotel. If you’ve been a guest or a client in the past, we want to welcome you back. It will give you the chance to relive some great memories! We’re also working on building on the success of the corporate launch.

 

Tell us about your team?

I’m fortunate to have in place strong Heads of Departments, all of whom have been with me for between four and nine years. I appreciate it’s quite unusual in this industry to work with people for so long, and I hope that length of service shows how well we get on, and that we are a genuine team. I also think the key is mutual respect and listening to them. Their opinions and work are valued, and that’s what has helped make Ellingham Hall what it is today.
 
As we plan for further growth in 2019 and 2020, I recognised that we needed additional experience in marketing and sales and have made two new appointments in Lynn Sanderson and Rachel Barlow. I’m looking forward to working with them for many years to come!

 

How do you keep ahead of the competition in such a competitive sector?

We were one of the first exclusive-use wedding venues in Northumberland, and in that time, we’ve focused on customer experience, retained our exclusivity, and our attention to detail hasn’t wavered. It’s important to move with demand and offer a high-quality service at a good price. We listen to our customer feedback to help us improve where we can.

 

What services do you offer?

Exclusive weddings, corporate and special events; private parties; private dining and holiday cottage breaks.

 

Where do you see the business in 12 months’ time?

We should have experienced the planned growth and launched our second venue, Lemmington Hall, ready for trading in 2020.

Photo by Phil Smith Photography

Lynn, Anthony & Rachel