Motorway Services Online


Road:M1 at J15a
(also accessible to traffic on the A43)
Address:Northampton Motorway Service Area
Telephone number:01604 831888
Signposted from the road?Yes - southbound as McDonald's/Costa
Previous operators:Blue Boar
Previous names:Rothersthorpe
Grid reference:SP722573
Services type:Two sites located within a junction, connected by a one mile public road.
Visit Northampton/Roadchef's official website

Modern Roadchef services at the M1/A43 junction, although it's been designed so that you can enter and leave the services without passing through the main junction.


Main Amenities: Business Lounge (southbound only), Ecotricity Electric Vehicle Charging Point, Jackpot £500, Picnic Tables, Showers
Restaurants: Costa, Costa Express, Fresh Food Café, Krispy Kreme, McDonald's
Shops: Fone Bitz, Spar (northbound only), WHSmith
Motel: none
Forecourt: BP (with: LPG), Wild Bean Café, AdBlue Containers

Parking Prices

First two hours free for all vehicles, after which cars must pay £20 and HGVs, caravans and coaches £25, or £27 to include a £10 food voucher.

Prices are paid using PayByPhone - more details or in the shop or restaurant. The location code is 5250 (northbound) and 5251 (southbound).

The fees are strictly enforced by CP Plus.


Northampton was opened many years ago under the name Rothersthorpe, one of three sites to be built by Blue Boar. It's the first and only site to break the gap between Watford Gap and Newport Pagnell, the two original motorway services.

There were plans for a while to make these services for HGVs only, to take the strain off Watford Gap, which had given a lot of space to a maintenance compound.

The northbound side is being used to trial Spar. The store opened on 30 September 2015 and is being trialled alongside one other site at Strensham northbound.


It was an infill site: originally the northbound side housed a council depot (which is still there today), but space was left for the services on both sides, and the footbridge was built with the motorway. On the southbound side, a sliproad took traffic off the motorway, through the non-existent site and back on.

Eventually two very small buildings (southbound was the larger of the two) were built next to the footbridge, designed to handle commercial vehicles only. They were described as "austere" and "stark". The footbridge was replaced in 1980. After Roadchef took over, in 2001 they replaced each one with a more modern design and disconnected the footbridge.


Originally, there would have been a rear access on to Banbury Lane to the west, and then later the new A43 to the east. When the A43 was re-routed to the east of here, a simple junction was built which was wrapped around the services, which then grew. Despite the new junction, the services retained their original online design, meaning visitors can, if they like, choose which facility they use without having to walk across a bridge.

Survey Results

In May 2012 and again in August 2011, Visit England rated the services as 3 stars.

In 2006, Holiday Which? rated the services at 3/5.


Newport Pagnell (13 miles)Services on the M1 Watford Gap (10 miles)
Cherwell Valley (22 miles)
Towcester (7 miles)
Services on the A43 none
none nearbyRoadchef services Watford Gap (10 miles)

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