Traffic can celebrate clearing the notorious queues at Stonehenge with a small service area by the Countess Roundabout.
Catering: Burger King, Greggs, Subway Amenities: Travelodge Outdoor Space: Grass bank around overflow car park; public footpath connections Forecourt: Shell, Select, Deli by Shell, Costa Express, Free Cash Machine
Short stay customer parking is available for all vehicles. No overnight parking is available.
This information is provided to us by third parties. You should always check with staff on site.
Trivia and Design
Countess is just a mile west of Solstice. It is located on the A303 eastbound, but immediately after a roundabout and with an exit road that loops back round.
The internal road layout is a bit odd, with a confusing range of parking areas and strange-shaped roads that get used as parking bays, all of which date back to the construction of the site.
Despite the name Amesbury being well-used, the roundabout and services are officially called Countess. The hotel sometimes promotes itself as Stonehenge, as it is one of the closest hotels to the stones.
As part of the A303 Stonehenge Tunnel project, the Countess Roundabout will receive a flyover, dramatically reducing the amount of traffic passing the service area's entrance. The timeline for this project isn't clear.
The site was developed by Trusthouse Forte in collaboration with Shell with planning permission granted in November 1988 for a restaurant, hotel and filling station. The site opened in 1989 with a Shell filling station, a 32-bed Travelodge hotel and the Amesbury branch of Little Chef, with parking areas for cars and HGVs and caravans. The restaurant and hotel had matching brown brick exteriors, with low pitched roofs. The original plans also included an additional parking area with a picnic area, toilets and tourist information in the north-east corner of the site, but these weren't added.
The restaurant and hotel facilities were later expanded in 1998 with the Little Chef restaurant gaining a Burger King with a separate entrance and the Travelodge hotel gaining a 17-bed extension to the rear of the restaurant. The Little Chef also gained its own game arcade in 2001.
A Harry Ramsden's and Caffè Ritazza were then added as part of Little Chef Choices, with the country's first Coffee Tempo! following in 2006. In 2011, the branch received a thorough refurbishment as part of the Wonderfully British project, where it gained a Good To Go facility and had its exterior covered in bright red cladding.
The Travelodge hotel gained a further 20-bed extension in 2008 in a new annexe building.
The Little Chef was still trading when the restaurant building was acquired by EG Group in 2017. They were expected to turn the Little Chef into a Starbucks, but this couldn't happen. Their rights to the brand ran out, so the Little Chef was forced to become EG Diner in January 2018.
The actual refurbishment took place in June 2018 and was expected to be complete in time for the July summer season. The actual opening took place in late August, meaning the summer's trade had been missed. The building now had a Burger King, Greggs and Subway, plus a small unit was left in the corner that was lined up to become a Starbucks.
The Starbucks plan failed again, and the empty unit became a Sainsbury's On the Go store in June 2019. It was rebranded to SPAR in time for the 2021 summer season, before permanently closing that autumn. The walls of the unit have since been completely removed and an extended Burger King seating area has replaced it.
|Solstice (westbound, 2 miles)
|Services on the A303
|Willoughby Hedge (westbound, 19 miles)
Hazelgrove (38 miles)
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