Hen / stag: Our night eating gruel in The Cells!

Being banged up for the night in an underground cell doesn’t sound like a pleasant experience. But, when that block of cells has been converted into a fun themed restaurant, it’s worth doing time for! Mr Robertson and I visited brand new concept restaurant The Cells (www.the-cells.co.uk) in Essex and found the ideal venue for a hen or stag party.

The restaurant can be found under the former magistrates’ court in Colchester, with the original structure and lay-out still in place. We were shown to our cell – the medieval cell – and placed at table number 13…could this be any more scary!? Our waitress for the evening was introduced as our very own inmate, dressed the part in her bright orange boiler suit! Bartenders wore black and white striped uniforms and there’s a strict-looking warden to complete the line-up.


We couldn’t resist a look around the other cells, with a white padded one, one stained with bloody handprints and another in the pitch black (the haunted cell, said to be home to the ghost of a young girl!), among others. The attention to detail didn’t stop there, with rations and gruel on offer on the menu and each course served on a cold metal tray and in chipped dishes – you really are made to feel you are banged up and in trouble here!




Aside from the eery theme, we thoroughly enjoyed our food at The Cells. I, of course, opted for the gruel of the day to start and was pleasantly surprised to find a cup full of delicious soup served to me, phew! Steak and burgers were the order of the day for our mains – nothing fancy, but good hearty grub to compliment a really fun night out. And the cocktails were to die for – the Jitterbug was certainly not a punishment I minded!


I would be delighted to go to a hen party at The Cells; it opens itself up to a whole themed night, with fancy dress a real must! With a children’s menu and the option of dining in a cell where it’s ok to write all over the walls, we’re even thinking a night out with the whole family for Halloween would be a unique experience!



Disclaimer: We received our main meals free of charge in return for a write-up on this blog.

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