Gloucester Services. Yes Really..

Yes.. your eyes are working correctly. This is a blog post about a motorway service station.

A few weeks ago, in a passing conversation about an upcoming trip to Bristol, my brother surprised me with his enthusiasm about Gloucester Services which was en route. He extolled the virtues for a good ten minutes and made me promise we’d stop on the way down.

Gloucester Services in the sunshine
Welcome sign at Gloucester Services

The weekend arrived and as Dave and I headed down south, we dutifully stopped at the services (which were almost invisible from the road) as instructed and JUST WOW. That is all.

40 minutes later with possibly the most middle-class and expensive services shop ever undertaken (£45 including a copy of Private Eye, two cans of Williams Chase gin and ginger beer, some locally made biscuits and a tea towel) and we were back on the road – full of conversation around why services in this country are so crap and why they should be more like this one. It had an almost Scandinavian feel – light, airy and relaxing. An actual break from the road rather than the garishly bright, smelly pitstops we’re used to.. you know what I mean – crowded spaces filled with gaming machines and overpriced, under delivering chain food.

Farmshop at Gloucester Services
Inside Gloucester Services
Dining Area at Gloucester Services

Some online research has only increased my love for this place. Gloucester Services is run by a family business (who also run a similar set up in Cumbria) and their whole focus is on community and sustainability. So, not only are these services completely green and built to be in tune with the local environment, the company also works alongside the Gloucestershire Gateway Trust and give a percentage of their sales back to the local community. Again … JUST WOW. On top of this, the vast majority of stuff for sale is locally sourced.

As well as the main cafe area, there is a ‘quick kitchen’ shop selling freshly made sandwiches, cakes and such like and a big farm shop selling everything from alcohol and locally sourced foodstuffs to pottery, books and gift items. I was literally in my element.

Quick Kitchen shop at Gloucester Services
Deli kitchen sign at Gloucester Services

The kids play area was beautifully done (sadly I was too tall to go and enjoy it) all very natural and in keeping with the feel of the place. The whole place was also decorated with lovely artwork by Stephanie Cole – who I’ve subsequently found and now follow on Instagram. A member of staff told us she came and hand painted everything – it must have been a real labour of love and helps give the place a unique feel.

Kids area at Gloucester Services
kids play zone at Gloucester Services

No.. not Centre Parcs, not the peak district. Gloucester Services. Yes really. Again…JUST WOW.

The lake outside Gloucester Services

Fancy a trip to Gloucester Services? Find them on the M5, between J12 & 11A (both sides). Visit their website here and follow them on twitter here

Gloucester Services 

Thanks yet again to Dave for lending his photographic eye to the blog. I’m paying him in dinners but even so, what a hero! Head over to David Parry Imaging to see his work. 

I chose to review off my own back and all opinions are my own. I'm contemplating a drive up to Cumbria just to see the Tebay Services because I genuinely love what these guys are doing

Leave a comment

  1. 30th September 2015 / 8:44 pm

    Oh wow! Who would have thought that such a beautiful place would exist in services!! If I wasn't so afraid of the Motorway I would definitely give them a visit

    Laura x x x

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *