Motorway Services Online

Retrieved from "https://motorwayservicesonline.co.uk/Timeline"

Opening Timeline

50 years of Watford Gap.

Below is a list of services organised by when they were opened. If you want to correct a date, go to that services' page, log in and edit it. The current date is usually on the 11th line.

This page tries to list only MSAs, and TRSAs which have been important to the story of the UK road network.

To organise the list by date, tap the arrow next to "opened".

Motorway services in Great Britain

Services Road Opened
Newport Pagnell M1 between J14 and J15 1959
(most facilities 1960, rebuilt 1980s)
Watford Gap M1 between J16 and J17 1959
(most facilities 1960, rebuilt 1980s)
Strensham M5 between J7 and J8 1962 (original)
1994 (new northbound)
2005 (new southbound)
Charnock Richard M6 between J27 and J28 1963
Leicester Forest East M1 between J21 and J21a 1966
Woodall M1 between J30 and J31 1968
London Gateway M1 between J2 and J4 1969
Sedgemoor (South) M5 southbound between J21 and J22 1970s (rest area)
1986 (MSA)
Sedgemoor (North) M5 northbound between J21 and J22 1970s (rest area)
1987 (MSA)
Michaelwood M5 between J13 and J14 1971
Rivington M61 between J6 and J8 1971 (rebuilt in 2011)
Heart of Scotland M8 between J4 and J5 1971
rebuilt 1987
rebuilt 2006
Corley M6 between J3 and J3a 1972
Membury M4 between J14 and J15 1972
Gretna A74(M) between J21 and J22 1972 (TRSA)
1992 (MSA)
Todhills M6 between J44 and J45 1972? (southbound TRSA)
1980s (northbound TRSA)
2008 (rest area)
Hartshead Moor M62 between J25 and J26 1973
Fleet M3 between J4a and J5 1973
Gordano M5 at J19 1973
Chester M56 at J14 1973 (rest area)
1998 (MSA)
Burtonwood M62 at J8 1974
Rownhams M27 between J3 and J4 1976 (westbound)
1987? (eastbound)
Northampton M1 at J15a and A43 1977
Pont Abraham M4 at J49 1983
Old Inns M80 at J6 1984 (TRSA)
2011 (MSA)
J38 Truckstop M6 at J38 1986
Sarn Park M4 at J36 1986 (rebuilt in 2016)
South Mimms M25 at J23 and A1(M) at J1 1987
Carnforth M6 at J35 (A601(M)) 1987?
Magor M4 at J23a 1992
Abington M74 and A74(M) at J13 1993
Clacket Lane M25 between J5 and J6 1993
Happendon M74 at J11 and J12 1994
Warwick M40 between J12 and J13 1994
Durham A1(M) at J61 1994
Birchanger Green M11 at J8 1995
Annandale Water A74(M) at J16 1995
Maidstone M20 at J8 1997
Oxford M40 at J8a and A40 1998
Tibshelf M1 between J28 and J29 1998
Stafford (South) M6 southbound between J14 and J15 1999
Hopwood Park M42 at J2 1999
Cullompton M5 at J28 1999
Cardiff Gate M4 at J30 2000?
Baldock A1(M)/A1 at J10 2001
Blackburn with Darwen M65 at J4 2002
Telford M54 at J4 2003
Norton Canes M6 Toll between JT6 and JT7 2004
Eurotunnel UK Terminal Eurotunnel UK Terminal 2007
(the terminal itself opened in 1994)
Folkestone M20 at J11 2008
Beaconsfield M40 at J2 2009
Cobham M25 between J9 and J10 2012
Gloucester M5 between J11a and J12 2014 (northbound)
2015 (southbound)

Other Services

The following services don't fit in to either of the above categories, but the data has been recorded so might as well be shared. This is not meant to be an exhaustive list.

Services Road Opened
Kings Worthy A33 1946
Ross Spur A40/M50 J4 1960s
Barnsdale Bar A1 1960s (southbound)
1980 (northbound)
Peartree A34 on the Oxford Ring Road 1964
Lolworth A14 1969
Kentford A14 1970s
Thrussington A46 1970s
Oaktree A1 1973
Newby A65 1974?
Wansford A1 near Wansford 1979
Tiverton M5 at J27 1980s
Weyhill A303 1980s
Ecton A45 1980s
Aberford A1 1980s
Newmarket A11 and A14 1984
Sutton Scotney A34 north of Winchester 1986
Monmouth A40 1986 (original)
2016 (rebuilt)
Oldbury M5 at J13 1986?
Crewe M6 at J16 and A500 1987
Markham Moor A1 1988
Guildford A3 near Guildford 1988
Talke A500 1989
Colsterworth A1 near Colsterworth 1989
Musselburgh A1 near City Bypass 1989
Markfield M1 at J22 1989
Alfreton A38 1989
Dreghorn A720 1989/90
Barnetby Top M180 J5 and A15 1990?
Buckland A420 near Faringdon 1991
Dover Port Within Eastern Docks, Dover 1991?
Copdock A12 and A14 1992?
Bangor A5 and A55 1993
Broxden M90/A9 Broxden Roundabout 2000
Derby South A50 2000
Symonds Yat A40 2000
Shefford A507 at Shefford 2001
Leicester North A46 north of Leicester 2008
Derby and Burton A38/A50 2008
Uttoxeter A50 2011
Coneygarth A1(M) at J51 2014
Cornwall A30 near Roche 2014
Markham Vale M1 at J29A 2014
Templepatrick M2 northbound between J4 and J5 2015
Lisburn M1 between J3 and J6 2016

Specific Dates

The following services are the ones we have an exact opening date for.

Note that this is more complicated than you'd think. Most services are opened in stages to get the money coming in before the building is finished. Many have a 'dummy run' where they quietly open so they can iron out any issues. Finally, there's then the official opening date, where the press are invited.

As we search our records, we find these dates have been mixed up. We're only interested in the date the main building opened, and have marked any entries where we think it might be wrong.

Organised by Year

Services Opened
Newport Pagnell phased from 2 November 1959 to August 1960
Watford Gap phased from 2 November 1959 to September 1960
Strensham 20 July 1962
Farthing Corner 29 May 1963
Charnock Richard 29 July 1963
Knutsford, Keele 15 November 1963
Toddington 20 May 1964
Oxford Peartree 29 June 1964
Forton from 29 January 1965
Leicester Forest East 15 February 1966
Frankley 27 July 1966
Aust 9 September 1966
Heston from 21 February 1967
Trowell 23 March 1967
Woodall 1 April 1968
Scratchwood 17 March 1969
Washington 27 August 1970
Burton West 23 October 1970
Hilton Park rumoured 26 October 1970
Anderton / Rivington / Bolton West / whatever rumoured 8 April 1971
Harthill 31 August 1971
Michaelwood 12 December 1971
Corley rumoured 17 January 1972
Leigh Delamere rumoured 14 March 1972
Membury rumoured 15 April 1972
Woolley Edge rumoured 25 April 1972
Killington Lake rumoured 9 May 1972
Tebay West 15 June 1972
Southwaite from 3 July 1972
Rothersthorpe rumoured 24 October 1972
Birch 29 November 1972
Gordano 7 May 1973
Fleet 6 June 1973
Hartshead Moor from 22 May 1973
Burtonwood rumoured 19 August 1974
Hamilton 20 June 1975
Bothwell 27 June 1975
Rownhams 21 June 1976
Exeter rumoured 24 May 1977 (would have been phased opening)
Ferrybridge 2 February 1985
Sedgemoor (South) rumoured 28 April 1986
South Mimms 6 June 1987
Tebay East 3 June 1993
Cherwell Valley 31 March 1994
Durham 23 August 1994
Annandale Water 6 April 1995
Stafford (North) 1 April 1996
Donington Park 8 July 1999
Hopwood Park 2 August 1999
Cullompton 3 September 1999
Cambridge 1 December 2000
Baldock 22 January 2001
Peterborough 15 January 2001
Telford 17 March 2003
Norton Canes 9 March 2004
Folkestone 9 January 2008
Leicester 24 June 2008
Derby with Burton 29 July 2008
Wetherby 23 August 2008
Beaconsfield 17 March 2009
Cobham 13 September 2012
Gloucester (North) 7 May 2014
Gloucester (South) 19 May 2015

Organised by Date

Services Opened
Folkestone 9 January 2008
Peterborough 15 January 2001
Corley rumoured 17 January 1972
Baldock 22 January 2001
Forton from 29 January 1965
Ferrybridge 2 February 1985
Leicester Forest East 15 February 1966
Heston from 21 February 1967
Norton Canes 9 March 2004
Leigh Delamere rumoured 14 March 1972
Scratchwood 17 March 1969
Telford 17 March 2003
Beaconsfield 17 March 2009
Trowell 23 March 1967
Cherwell Valley 31 March 1994
Woodall 1 April 1968
Stafford (North) 1 April 1996
Annandale Water 6 April 1995
Anderton / Rivington / Bolton West / whatever rumoured 8 April 1971
Membury rumoured 15 April 1972
Woolley Edge rumoured 25 April 1972
Sedgemoor (South) rumoured 28 April 1986
Gordano 7 May 1973
Gloucester (North) 7 May 2014
Killington Lake rumoured 9 May 1972
Gloucester (South) 19 May 2015
Toddington 20 May 1964
Hartshead Moor from 22 May 1973
Exeter rumoured 24 May 1977
Farthing Corner 29 May 1963
Tebay East 3 June 1993
Fleet 6 June 1973
South Mimms 6 June 1987
Tebay West 15 June 1972
Hamilton 20 June 1975
Rownhams 21 June 1976
Leicester 24 June 2008
Bothwell 27 June 1975
Oxford Peartree 29 June 1964
Southwaite from 3 July 1972
Donington Park 8 July 1999
Strensham 20 July 1962
Frankley 27 July 1966
Charnock Richard 29 July 1963
Derby with Burton 29 July 2008
Hopwood Park 2 August 1999
Newport Pagnell phased from 2 November 1959 to August 1960
Burtonwood rumoured 19 August 1974
Wetherby 23 August 2008
Durham 23 August 1994
Washington 27 August 1970
Harthill 31 August 1971
Cullompton 3 September 1999
Aust 9 September 1966
Cobham 13 September 2012
Burton West 23 October 1970
Rothersthorpe rumoured 24 October 1972
Hilton Park rumoured 26 October 1970
Watford Gap phased from 2 November 1959 to September 1960
Knutsford, Keele 15 November 1963
Birch 29 November 1972
Cambridge 1 December 2000
Michaelwood 12 December 1971