The Castle Bar (Cockermouth)

14 Market Place, Cockermouth, CA13 9NQ
The Castle Bar (Cockermouth) Outside

The Castle Bar in Cockermouth is a popular gastro-pub in the town’s Market Place. The pub is housed in a former 16th century merchant’s house and has been completely renovated in recent years to create a contemporary but cosy space.

The inn is spread over three floors, so there is plenty of space available, but it is still advisable to book a table during peak periods. Although the pub is a popular place for dining, you will find an excellent selection of real ale here. The pub welcomes dogs and families with children, with a large beer garden to the rear.

Food & Drink

The Castle Bar (Cockermouth) pub

Photo thanks to the Castle Bar

Food is served daily here, between 5pm and 9.30pm Mondays to Fridays and from 5.30pm until 9pm on Saturdays and Sundays. Lunch is served each weekend between noon and 2.30pm, and it is also served daily during the school holidays. The pub is dedicated to supporting local suppliers wherever possible, sourcing items from the town’s bakery and butchers, as well as from suppliers around Cumbria.

The lunch time menu has a good choice of light bites with a selection of ciabattas, wraps, and soups available. A number of main meals are also available at lunchtime, with most of the pub favourites covered. A roast dinner is served each Sunday. In the evenings, there is a good choice of classic pub dishes, including steak & ale pie, scampi, and fish and chips. In addition, there are a number of internationally inspired dishes available, and a reasonable choice for vegetarians. The children’s menu has the option to opt from a choice of sides, which is always welcome for parents of fussy eaters.

The Castle Bar is featured in the CAMRA Good Beer Guide and for good reason. Along with two permanent Jennings cask ales (brewed just a couple of hundred metres away) and Loweswater Gold from Cumbrian Legendary Ales, the inn has four guest cask ales available at any one time, as well as one cask cider. There is a good choice of wines, and an impressive selection of whiskies and gins, including those produced locally. Barista style coffee is also available here.

Other Features

The Castle Bar (Cockermouth) beer garden

Photo thanks to the Castle Bar

The inn is spread over three floors. The ground floor is home to the bar, where dogs are welcome. The second floor hosts a more formal restaurant setting, whilst the third floor has cosy sofas and low tables for relaxing after a meal. Outside, there is a three-tiered beer garden that gets the sun most of the day.

The tables are spread over a number of terraces that are interspersed with planted areas and surrounded by old stone walls, all creating a charming and peaceful atmosphere. The pub has televisions in the downstairs bar rooms and a subscription to Sky Sports. Along with the major football matches, the pub also screens other sporting events such as rugby, Formula One, and boxing.


Although the exterior of the Castle Bar dates back to the 18th century, parts of the building have been dated back to the sixteenth century. It’s thought that originally the building was the home of a rich merchant, and it became the Ship Hotel in the early 19th century when tourists started flocking to the Lake District. In the twentieth century, the hotel transformed into a pub, also known as the Ship, before becoming the Castle Bar.


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