Seven Bridges services
A dormant filling station has come back to life, providing new facilities on the A419.
Short stay customer parking is available for cars, as well as two short stay caravan and motorhome parking bays. No HGV parking is available.
This information is provided to us by third parties. You should always check with staff on site.
Calcutt Service Station
Trivia and History
The site was built in the 1950s, on the then-single carriageway Ermin Way. Its name refers to the small crossing of the River Ray immediately south-east of here, which is officially (and confusingly) named Seven Bridges Bridge.
After Ermin Way became a dual carriageway, a northbound partner to Seven Bridges opened at Calcutt. Both of these forecourts were targetted by Roadchef in 1988 as potential locations for them to build their new restaurant, but planning permission was refused.
Two years later Blue Boar then planned to build a restaurant, shop, tourist information centre and motel next to the forecourt at Seven Bridges, but this plan was refused too.
At this stage, Seven Bridges was still just a small forecourt, branded Gulf and operated by Bayford Group. It didn't qualify for full service area status, unlike its newer and larger northbound partner. The Seven Bridges site also provided access to the Seven Bridges Service Centre and a used car dealer that operated from the detached house next door.
Slip Road Issues
A new freeholder purchased the land in 2009. The Gulf forecourt closed in 2015 and was fenced off, while a new lease was signed with BP Express. BP made a planning application to demolish the existing facility and replace it with a new BP forecourt and shop.
Highways England attached several conditions to this planning application, relating to the short entry and exit from the petrol station, and the fact that the petrol station itself would be positioned so close to the main dual carriageway. These safety concerns were an inevitable consequence of such an old site being re-used.
The developers were happy to comply with Highways England's requests, with work starting in 2018. This would have included the construction of a very long entry slip road. However, it was discovered that the new slip road would interfere with the main water line, which meant this aspect had to be put on hold. While the main build was finished in late 2019, the slip road issue remained unresolved which meant Highways England would not allow it to open.
The BP filling station and its M&S Simply Food store finally opened on 9 December 2020, after the completion of the new slip road. The new service area was granted official service area status, and given formal road signs.
The freeholder of the site plans to add electric vehicle charging points and potentially a fast food chain.
|Calcutt (northbound, ¼ mile)|
Cirencester (9 miles)
|Services on the A419||Membury (M4 east, 18 miles)|