The Boreham Interchange is a complicated mess surrounded by retail parks, supermarkets and new pubs, and one of these compromises a service area.
COVID-19 update: Most service stations are open with fewer facilities. General advice here.
First 2 hours free for all vehicles, after which cars must pay £4 per 24 hour period and HGVs, caravans and motorhomes must pay £11 per 24 hour period. Prices can be paid in the forecourt.
Chelmsford Service Area
🌍 Operators (Official Websites):
Trivia and Design
Although most sources call it Chelmsford service area, the official name is Boreham service station.
Unusually, this place still has a separate toilet block. These used to be common at A-road service areas, but most have since been moved into the main building to encourage custom and make cleaning easier.
Note that there is a second Premier Inn positioned on the opposite side of this junction. Confusingly, that one takes the Boreham name, while this one is demoted to Springfield.
The Chelmsford Bypass (including this awful junction) was built on the cheap in 1986. Space was left in the middle of it for a service area, which came a few years later.
As early as 1986, Hambros Bank made a planning application to develop this land and the cattle market next door. Their project included a hotel, petrol station, restaurant and fast food outlet. Permission was granted but not taken forward.
The main planning application was put forward by Mobil in 1989, and used broadly the same layout as what is there today, with land allocated to a fast food restaurant, motel, Mobil's petrol station and 40 HGV parking spaces. The petrol station had a small block at the back with toilets and payphones, while the HGV parking area had a building allocated to the RAC. These were both moved to their current positions before being built.
In late 1989 Esso also made a plan to build here. Their layout was very similar, but they had a hotel, restaurant, shop and toilets all combined into one single-storey building. Esso soon withdrew their plan. They did not mention who would have run their restaurant: Esso had been known to work with Granada, but this particular proposal probably wasn't far enough advanced to consider such detail.
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