Motorway Services Online

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Doncaster (North) services

Location:

M18 at J5
M180 at the starting roundabout

Signposted from the road.

Post Code:

DN8 5GS

map and directions

Access/Layout:

Single site located at a junction.

Rating: See the reviews



This is the Moto service area on the M18 and the M180. For the old Little Chef on the A1, see Carcroft. For the former Forte services on the A1, see Barnsdale Bar. For the unbuilt services, see Unbuilt Services.

One service area serving both the M18 and the M180, with the largest range of facilities available in this corner of the motorway network.

Facilities

Catering: Burger King, Costa, Greggs, Costa Express, Krispy Kreme Shops: M&S Simply Food, WHSmith Main Amenities: Ecotricity electric vehicle charging point, Full Hou$e, Lucky Coin, NomadPower, Showers Motel: Travelodgebook Forecourt: BP (with: BP Autogas LPG), Shop, Greggs, Costa Express, Krispy Kreme, Air1 AdBlue

Parking Prices

First two hours free for all vehicles, after which cars must pay £15 and HGVs, caravans and motorhomes £26.50. HGVs can pay £28 to include a £10 food voucher.

Prices are paid using PayByPhone - more details. The location code is 2434.

The fees are strictly enforced by CP Plus.

Contact Details

Address:
Junction 5
M18 Motorway
Thorne
Doncaster
South Yorkshire
DN8 5GS


Trivia and History

Doncaster Scoop.jpg
Some of the original Moto brands in the services.

Camera icon

Opened by Granada 2000
Re-branded Moto 2001

The services's car park is a base for a local park & share scheme. It is connected by public footpath to Hugh Hill Lane and the wider road network of Thorne.

Some planing documents called it 'Hatfield North services'. The unusual choice to use parentheses could be an attempt to differentiate from the A1's Doncaster services.

For a long time there has been a plan to build a link road from M18 J5 to the local road network. This was proposed in 2005 and again at the moment, with the plan being to use some of the services's access road and provide a new roundabout half way along it.

Previous Plans

There was a long history of attempts to build a service station on the M18, mostly centred on a site one mile to the south of here, at Hatfield. That plan was still active as of 1989, but struggled to attract interest as it required building on both sides of the road. In 1986 a plan was put forward to build services north of J6.

With no action having been taken, in 1993 Forte proposed building a service area at J5. This didn't happen, but in 1994 another developer turned attention Rossington Hall (at J3).

In 1996, Granada started working on their own plan for a service area at J5. Their first plan would have had the access road run in a straight line, down to a small roundabout. On the left was the petrol station, HGV parking was straight ahead, and on the right was the car and coach parking, with the amenity building and a separate 40-bedroom Travelodge behind it. Space was left for the future Hatfield Link Road, but it would have meant going through the middle of the site, and lorry drivers would have been expected to walk across it.

Those problems were fixed with a new external layout dated 1998, which is very similar to what was built. The first drawings had a very different amenity building. The entrance would have been in the middle of a long corridor, with Travelodge on the far left, and five retail units, plus the game arcade, arranged in a row. At the other end was a Burger King seating area, with toilets on one side and a Little Chef behind it.

Documents also reveal a sketch of another option, undated, which is similar to that one. This would have had an entrance to an area with five retail units around it. Straight ahead were a set of doors leading to a landscaped area with two water lakes. Inside, to the left of the entrance, was the access to the Travelodge which overlooks one of the lakes. On the right was a corridor running past the game arcade, to the Burger King seating area. At the back was the Granada-branded shop, to the right were the toilets, and on the far left was a Little Chef. This seating would have overlooked the other lake. This design is very similar to Stafford, which received praise when it opened in 1996.

In time, those retail units would have become the takeaway outlets we are used to today, but at the time Granada were expecting them to work like a small shopping centre. What is odd about these options is catering would have been provided by only Burger King and Little Chef, making it just a bigger example of the Little Chefs Granada were still building across the country. The designs appear to have been rejected because Granada wanted to make the dining area the focal point of the building.

The chosen design was put forward later in 1998. A balancing pond by the Travelodge causes a small stream to flow around the front of it, like a moat. Space was left for two more buildings to be added to the Travelodge. Approximately 258 parking spaces were provided, with space to expand the car park past the Travelodge. There were 81 HGV spaces and 18 coach spaces. Inside, Little Chef was swapped for Fresh Express.

Opening and Brands

The chosen building design marked Granada's move to the atrium style, which made the dining area the centre of the building and kept all the shops in the same place, as well as being easier to extend in future. It is tall with a single entrance and light entering from the front and along the roof.

Doncaster had one of the last remaining trucker's cafés on the motorway network. Unlike a traditional transport café it was part of the main amenity building, but still remarkable when it closed in 2009. Next to it was a T2 store, which lay empty for a while, became a games arcade, and is now a Costa. The unit at the front-left served as seating for most of its life, but is now Greggs.

On the right, the Burger King hasn't moved, but WHSmith has replaced Scoop. In front of it was the first games arcade, which became a Costa and is now part of the extended retail area. M&S was first planned in 2009, to open at the front, but was postponed until March 2016 when it replaced EDC. This leaves Burger King and Costa as the main catering providers.

Alternatives

Previous:Next:
none on M18
Woodall (M1 south, 27 miles)
Blyth (A1(M) south, 19 miles)
Services on the M18 none on M18
Ferrybridge (M62 west, 19 miles)
West Cave (A63, 21 miles)
Glews (M62 east, 10 miles)
start of road Services on the M180 Barnetby (26 miles)
Trowell (M1 south, 55 miles)
Blyth (A1(M) south, 19 miles)
Moto services Ferrybridge (M62 west, 19 miles)

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