UNDRESSED FOR DINNER by Simon Temple-Bennett, £12 ISBN 978-1-904524984


Augill Castle in Eden has a reputation for hospitality way beyond the county of Cumbria – indeed, far beyond the shores of Britain.

But its popularity as a top place to stay was certainly not a foregone conclusion when, in 1997, the castle was taken on by London couple Simon and Wendy Temple-Bennett.

In this book, Simon provides a warm and entertaining account of how they first made the decision to buy the Victorian pile and the enormous leap of faith they made to turn it into the successful hotel it has since become. Along the way we meet some of the guests and local characters who helped to make their journey such a fascinating and and rewarding one.

The book is also a tribute to Simon’s mother whose faith and financial help enabled them to fulfill their remarkable dream.