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- Our Story -

The Dolphin is one of the old familiars in Botley, located on the south side of the High Street, next to the Market Hall. It is steeped in history and was, at one point, one of 14 inns in the village. It’s been around for centuries and we are proud companions to one or two former residents…


In its recent-ish history, it has been an important Jazz venue (hosting some of the biggest names in British jazz), a ‘spit-and-sawdust’ bikers’ pub, a wedding and event venue, a Hungry Horse and, from 2017, part of the Wadworth ‘Managed House’ portfolio, undergoing a major refurbishment as part of the process.


During the 2020 pandemic, the Brewery decided to shrink their ‘Managed House’ estate and offered the Tenancy, in the first instance, to the House Manager – Steve who then scrabbled around to find a willing volunteer to assist in securing the Dolphin. So here we are.


Many will have encountered Steve who, along with his beautiful partner Cliff, has been ever-present in the local hospitality world since Noah set sail, and has a formidable and well-earned reputation as a wonderful host and a superb landlord.


This latest venture sees Cliff taking more of a relaxing back seat although he’s still the star turn at the Sunday Meat Draw and the eye candy behind the bar!


To Kay, the Dolphin is home-from-home, having worked here for several years in the last century. The Dolphin in return, has enjoyed her patronage ever since. Kay helps with the dull bits of the business and only ventures out after dark so as not to frighten the locals.



It’s a match made in Botley and as they say, ‘Fortune Favours the Brave’.


- Events & Community -

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