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The Fox Goes Free

Charlton West Sussex PO18 0HU

This splendid countryside pub, tucked away in the South Downs National Park midway between Chichester and Midhurst, is a real winner. It has its own beer for starters – the eponymous Fox Goes Free, brewed especially for the pub – as well as one of the loveliest pub gardens in Sussex, with tables set out under apple trees, and a low stone wall at the end of the garden allowing uninterrupted views over National Trust-owned Levin Down. Inside, the pub sprawls over several rooms, and has bags of character – well-worn brick and stone floors, beams and huge inglenook fireplaces that roar into life in winter. The food is excellent, with everything made in-house, from the lip-smackingly good crunchy chips to the ice-cream. Most of the dishes on the bar menu – amongst them fish pie, sausage and mash, fish and chips, and a really good burger in a brioche bun – are around £10/11, and there are cheaper ciabattas available, too, as well as a posher a la carte menu featuring belly of pork, rib-eye steak and the like.

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