This is the current A1 forecourt in Bedfordshire. For the former service area in Yorkshire, see Aberford.
Another site which has become a shadow of its former self: just a northbound petrol station and a southbound motel remains at Astwick.
Motel: Redwings Lodge
Astwick Service Station
Great North Road
- Grid reference: TL225381
Trivia and History
For many years Astwick looked like a typical pair of Little Chefs and petrol stations, but the history is a lot more colourful.
Astwick's history starts with a large building called 'Roseland' (later 'Chilcotes'), which was built in the 1910s next to the Great North Road, opposite the Greyhound pub. The Northway garage (and a house behind it) were built in the 1930s, slightly south of here.
In the 1960s the A1 was upgraded to a dual carriageway, with frequent gaps for turning traffic. The garage became the southbound BP petrol station, while 'Roseland' was taken over by Happy Eater in the 1970s to become their Baldock branch. In 1989 the Hinxworth Travelodge was built next to it.
In 1996, that Happy Eater became the Baldock Little Chef. It operated until 2010, when it was closed and left derelict. In 2013 the Travelodge closed, but the following year that was taken over and refurbished by Redwings Lodge.
The forecourt gained a Wild Bean Café in 2009, but the whole place closed in 2018 leaving only a motel on the southbound side.
The northbound service area was built in 1980 on the site of New Inn Farm, in between the southbound facilities. Building here meant that northbound customers no longer had to turn across the A1 dual carriageway, which was both off-putting and likely to be closed at some point.
This purpose-built development consisted of a petrol station (branded 'BP self serve') and the Astwick branch of Little Chef, a flat-roofed diner which looked considerably less grand than its southbound counterpart. In 2004 it was closed by Permira, not helped by competition from Baldock services to the south. Nobody could be found to purchase it so the building was permanently locked, with its furniture still inside.
The building stood like this until 2010, when BP re-built their petrol station and replaced it with a much larger site which required the former restaurant to be demolished. The forecourt was sold in 2014 with the shop being re-fitted under Nisa Local brand, and it gained a Subway outlet in 2017.
The forecourt is operated by Highway Stops Retail Limited.
|Baldock (1 miles)||Services on the A1||
Wyboston (A1 southbound, 13 miles)|
Brampton Hut (23 miles)