|Road:||A34/A44 Peartree Interchange|
(Oxford Ring Road)
MAP AND DIRECTIONS
|Telephone number:||01865 514268|
|Signposted from the road?||Yes|
|Previous operators:||Autogrill, Granada, Little Chef|
|Previous names:||Oxford, Oxford Peartree|
|Services type:||Single site located at a junction.|
|Visit Peartree/Welcome Break's official website|
Little Chef Wiki
Once a tired Little Chef, these services were taken over by Welcome Break in 2010 and given a completely new list of brands.
Due to a shortage of space HGVs are banned from the services, but there is room for coaches.
Catering: KFC, Starbucks, Costa Express, Krispy Kreme Shops: Waitrose Main Amenities: Ecotricity electric vehicle charging point, Meeting Room, Showers, Welcome Break Gaming Motel: Travelodge, Holiday Inn Forecourt: Shell (with: Autogas LPG), Select, Deli2go, Yorkshire Tea
First two hours free for all vehicles, after which cars must pay £10. Prices can be paid in Starbucks or in the pay and display machines in each parking area.
No HGV parking is available.
Trivia and History
Until recently, the services were advertised as being open from 11am until "late" - this has recently changed as Starbucks opens at 6am, Waitrose opens at 8am and KFC is open from 11am. These units are all closed by 11pm - Welcome Break were planning to keep the Starbucks open 24 hours a day to match all of their motorway sites but as of January 2017 this hasn't happened.
Welcome Break's most recent takeover here extends to the main facilities only, meaning they do not operate the hotels. This is due to the way the facilities have been sold, as detailed below.
It was quite an upmarket service area, opening under the name Fortes Motor Lodge Oxford. It had an Autogrill restaurant with a charcoal grill and a 24-hour snack bar. The walls down to the basement toilets were lined with carpet. 350 parking spaces were included.
The building, which was built in the same style as the Autogrill at Barnsdale Bar, was positioned to be visible from the old A34.
Although at the time there were no motorways near here, this was still the junction of several major roads, and Fortes wanted to introduce their facilities without the hassle and regulations encountered when running a motorway service area. An Excelsior Motor Lodge was included on-site.
Several changes were made to the services, introducing a carvery, and then the country's first Granary restaurant. The hotel became the Oxford Lodge, and the services were known as Oxford.
In 1981, a Little Chef was built outside the services, the first Little Chef at a service area like this. In 1986, Fortes applied their newly-acquired Welcome Break branding to the site. The hotel was then renamed Welcome Lodge.
When Granada purchased Fortes, they were soon forced to sell all of Welcome Break's motorway services - but Peartree was safe because it wasn't on a motorway.
The Welcome Break branding had to be removed. Granada moved the Little Chef in to the main building, with a coffee shop, a Granada Shop, game arcade, and a Burger King. The hotel became the Oxford Lodge.
With the opening of the Peartree park and ride site down the road, and the upgraded roundabout being named 'Peartree Roundabout', the services became known as Oxford Peartree.
Under Compass the hotel, which was now looking very elderly, was demolished and replaced by two hotels. The larger, more upmarket hotel was promoted as the first Posthouse to be built in 20 years. However, by the time they opened, Compass had sold its hotel business, so these became a Holiday Inn and a Travelodge, operated by their respective owners.
The restaurant was the first to become a Little Chef Choices, where it gained an Upper Crust counter and a joint Little Chef/Harry Ramsden's/Caffe Ritazza menu. This was removed, but the game arcade became a Coffee Tempo!.
As Little Chef encountered financial difficulties, they struggled to maintain such a large site. Inside and out there was evidence of poor upkeep all around. Even so, Little Chef said they liked the site, and claim they were disappointed when their lease expired and they were denied the opportunity to renew it.
Welcome Break took over the site in April 2010 and completely stripped it out, with the new facilities opening on 9 July 2010. This means it has now been owned by Welcome Break on two separate occasions.
|Didcot (15 miles)||Services on the A34||Family Farm (5 miles)|
|Oxford (10 miles)||Services on the A40||Eynsham (5 miles)|
|Oxford (10 miles)||Welcome Break services||Warwick (M40 north, 35 miles)|
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