Lancaster Services makes top five list thanks to iconic tower

Forton has been chosen as one of five motorway service stations in Britain that ‘go the extra mile’.

By Debbie Butler
Friday, 5th August 2022, 3:19 pm

With a lot of people intending to take a staycation over the summer months many are opting for road trips across the country and inevitably, stopping at service stations.

According to Tesco Bank Insurance, some motorway services offer that extra touch and can make your drive a little more interesting.

Here are the five unique service stations they recommend you plot into your route.

Lancaster (Forton) Services with its iconic tower.

One service station for foodies: Gloucester Services, M5

Part of the same family-owned group of service stations as Tebay, Gloucester boasts a menu of home-cooked meals made from locally sourced produce which cater to vegetarians, vegans, and those who are just there for a quick bite. If you do have the time, however, walk through the farm shop which houses a butcher’s counter, patisserie, handmade lifestyle products, and more.

One service station for architecture buffs: Lancaster (Forton) Motorway Service Area, M6

The architecture of service stations often prioritises function over aesthetic, but this is not the case for the Pennine Tower at Forton Motorway Service Area on the M6. The iconic tower stands at 65 feet (20m) and can be seen from afar as part of the northbound building. Although the tower closed in 1989, it’s unique 60s style is still a wonder to behold and is a welcome sight for Lancashire bound travellers. Fill up or charge your car here and regale your family with the tower’s history.

One service station for Instagram: Beaconsfield Services, M40

Unless you’re snapping a picture about how dismal the snack selection is, there’s no reason why you’d want to show Instagram a picture of a service station. That is, of course, unless you’re at Beaconsfield Services.This lakeside service station features a large terrace, landscaped grounds, and a preserved woodland to stretch your legs in. If you’re taking a lengthy road trip, then consider staying at the Ibis hotel they have on site and enjoy sitting by the lakeside with a meal from one of the 13 food establishments.

One service station for dogs: Whiddon Down Services, A30

With many people having purchased a dog since March 2020, some will be opting to road trip with their pups. Stop over at Whiddon Down Services on the A30 and pay a visit to Hog and Hedge, a dog-friendly café that has bowls of fresh water and treats for your four-legged friend, and organic, home-cooked food for you to enjoy. The friendly staff are sure to point you in the direction of good dog walk routes, but popular options include Woodland Springs Touring Park or Teign Valley Classis Circuit which sits next to Castle Drogo, a National Trust site.

One service station for the forgetful: Cobham, M25

Between making sure everyone packed their toothbrush and double checking every window is shut, it’s inevitable that something slipped your mind. Consider stopping by Cobham service station, Britain’s biggest service station, which has an extensive list of eateries, a newsagent and bookstore, and even a self-service launderette to treat any pesky stains picked up on the journey. As if that wasn’t impressive enough, Cobham has several charging point stations, a huge fuel station for those who need petrol or diesel, and a hydrogen refuelling area too.