Motorway Services Online

Trumps Green

Trumps Green:

Road: M3 between J2 and J3
Location: Virginia Water, Surrey
Date planned: 1960-1973
Grid reference: SU994664
See also: Kempshott

Google Maps link


Photos:

Trumps Green onslip joins mainline.jpg

When the M3 was being designed, various options were considered for its service areas. This generally assumed there would be services at Trumps Green and Kempshott, with another provided in the middle, later settled on as Fleet. In the late 1960s, about 30 new services had been proposed, but Trumps Green was considered the most desirable of them all.

After choosing Trumps Green as one of the final three, it was used as a temporary works depot during the construction of the motorway. Ghost slips left over from this can still be made out today. A public inquiry was strongly against building the services, but it was considered too important to leave and a revised layout was suggested.

While worrying about this, it was decided that three service areas would be unnecessary for a newly-opened road used mainly by commuters, especially with plans for connections at the London end still unfinished. As a result, it was agreed Fleet would open first, and the other two would be postponed.

While postponed, concerns were raised about how suitable Trumps Green ever would be. Its location was dangerously close to the M25 interchange (not built at the time), difficult to access, and likely to attract protests from the neighbouring farm. Alternatives were looked at, including inside the M25 at the former Shepperton gravel pits, and a favoured site at Windlesham which was ruled out as it wasn't clear whether the land would be needed for the proposed M31 motorway to Reading. Other sites were considered at Chobham Common, Valley End and Oakwood.

Unable to agree on a suitable site, the planned services stayed on the cards, but never materialised. Some other planned services, such as Colnbrook, were planned on the basis that services would be provided at Trumps Green. This is despite the site originally being described as "extremely attractive" to developers. One plan tried to take advantage of the lack of space by providing two staggered 16-acre facilities here.

It does have an amusing name, but unfortunately this bonus factor was not considered when building services.