Leigh Delamere services
|Facilities | Rating | Reviews|
|Road:||M4 between J17 and J18|
MAP AND DIRECTIONS
|Address:||Granada Hospitality Ltd|
Leigh Delamere Motorway Services Area
|Telephone number:||01666 837691|
|Signposted from the road?||Yes|
|Previous operators:||Taverna, Granada|
|Services type:||Two sites located between junctions, connected by a pedestrian footbridge.|
|Visit Leigh Delamere Westbound/Moto's official website|
Visit Leigh Delamere Eastbound/Moto's official website
Two services located on the M4 near Bristol. The eastbound side exterior is slightly larger and it has a small field by the hotel and a lot more trees.
Catering: Burger King, Costa, Greggs, West Cornwall Pasty Co., Costa Express, Krispy Kreme
westbound only: Arlo's, Chow
eastbound only: Eat & Drink Co. Shops: Cotton Traders, Fone Bitz, M&S Simply Food, WHSmith
westbound only: Travellers Main Amenities: Ecotricity electric vehicle charging point, Lucky Coin, Picnic Tables, Showers
westbound only: Children's Soft Play Area, Full Hou$e, Multi Faith Room, Regus Express Motel: Travelodge Forecourt: BP (with: BP Autogas LPG), Shop, Costa Express, Krispy Kreme, Air1 AdBlue
westbound only: Greggs
eastbound only: Costa
First two hours free for all vehicles, after which cars must pay £15 and HGVs, caravans and motorhomes £24, or £25.50 to include a £10 food voucher.
Prices are paid using PayByPhone - more details. The location code is 2451 (westbound) and 2452 (eastbound).
The fees are strictly enforced by CP Plus.
Mobil were allowed to bid for the services despite Michaelwood nearby as not much traffic was expected to take that route. However, Taverna were not allowed to bid for Gordano as a result of eventually owning Leigh Delamere.
There were once plans to rename the services to Chippenham, and beneath the westbound site apparently lies two buried diggers. Why? Who knows!
Leigh Delamere used to be listed by the Highways Agency as an "approved truckstop", but no longer is.
The Travelodges on either side differ slightly in price up to £4, with the westbound being the more expensive.
History and Design
Despite the differences between the design of the two sides, they appear to be about the same age. When it opened, it was praised for its simple but striking building design; the antidote to the crowded and complicated services built so far. At 41 acres, when it opened it was considered massive - 10 years ago services had been only eight acres in total size.
In 1986 it was noted that the weekly patronage varied from 16,000 to 129,000 during the year, and employees varied from 200 to 300. This makes it approximately four times bigger than Ferrybridge services, which was surveyed at the same time.
Thanks to the good design work of Taverna, in 1975 Leigh Delamere was the only service station to impress a panel of architects, who called it "extremely fine, large and spacious". A trial children's play area had been sanctioned by the Department for Transport, occupying a cut-off quadrant in the northern corner.
Their architecture may have been good, but failings with the catering at Washington caused Leigh Delamere to open late with a second trial of microwave catering. The restaurant had orange settees, and outside was a large landscaped area. The restaurant was divided into two, keeping private vehicles and lorry drivers separate.
The first of the motels here opened in 1988.
Under Granada, the westbound side was extended to gain a BHS Express, Tandy, Halfords, Claire's and an Early Learning Centre. Under Moto, only BHS were kept. They instead introduced Birthdays and Scoop stores, as well as T2, Thorntons, The Sock Shop and a Formula One shop to both sides, the latter being a huge shop which sold a small amount of Ferrari merchandise. The eastbound side had a Web Shop and The Body Shop.
A BT "communications room" was added outside the westbound building in circa 2000. It is essentially a summerhouse-shaped room with public telephones mounted to the walls. Whilst it is one of BT's more unusual public phone experiments, it was only one of two in UK service stations and is no longer here.
In circa 2001 a 'drive-thru' Burger King was added to the service area. Although it has since closed (presumably because it directed trade away from the main building), the set-up can still be seen on the westbound side.
In circa 2007/2008, the westbound unbranded restaurant and Caffè Ritazza units became Costa. Also, the eastbound Fork In The Road Restaurant (a unique take on Moto's catering) and Upper Crust became EDC and Costa respectively. Granada's Little Chefs were removed a few years earlier.
In 2011, the eastbound side gained the first ever Domino's Pizza outlet, in what was billed as the start of a full roll-out. This never happened, and the outlet was removed in January 2012.
A Greggs outlet opened within the westbound forecourt on 16 March 2017 to replace the former Costa outlet.
Use with care. Outdated surveys have been included for interest only.
In 2015, Visit England rated the services as 4 stars.
In October 2012, The eastbound side was awarded the Food Beverage and Forecourt Retailer of the year.
In May 2012 and August 2011 the eastbound services were rated 4 stars by Visit England, who said it had the best family changing rooms. The westbound side was given 3 stars.
In 2006, the services were rated at 4/5 by Holiday Which?
Also in 2006, Leigh Delamere won a four star loo award. In 2005 it was five stars.
In 1991, a Which? survey rated the services as "average".
In 1977, Egon Ronay found the café "acceptable".
|Membury (28 miles)||Services on the M4||
Magor (32 miles)|
Severn View (M48, 23 miles)
Michaelwood (M5 north, 28 miles)
Gordano (M5 south, 28 miles)
|Chieveley (40 miles)||Moto services||
Cardiff West (54 miles)|
Severn View (M48, 23 miles)
Bridgwater (M5 south, 58 miles)
Views expressed in these comments are those of the individual contributor. They are moderated by Facebook.