|Location||Barton Stacey, Andover|
The Barton Stacey branch is a current Little Chef restaurant located on the westbound side of the A303 near Barton Stacey, Hampshire.
Opened between 1968 and 1972, the Little Chef at Barton Stacey was originally positioned to the back of the services and was housed inside of a building with the design of a converted house. It was an offset pair with the Longparish branch, its eastbound partner which was located just a few miles away.
The A303 is a road running from the M3 motorway in Hampshire to Honiton in Devon. It feeds many towns, intersects with many routes to the west and is often used by travellers escaping to Devon and Cornwall for a summer break. Thus, a Little Chef here would be sure to have plenty of passing trade and be able to attract a lot of long-distance traffic. Little Chef's owners Forte thought so too and, to maximise the restaurant's potential chose a location close to Andover, a large town in the area, to help encourage locals. The site chosen also had a filling station which helped attract extra custom to the Little Chef so the chain had most angles covered.
The 1980s/90s saw a lot of positive developments for the site. In 1985/86, the restaurant was rebuilt by Forte and was built in Little Chef's house design of the era with the pitched roof, double front and red bricks. Compared with the original outdated building, the new building was much more modern and looked even more attractive to A303 travellers. Unlike the original building, the new building was positioned to the front of the services, making it highly visible to passing traffic. During the same year, a Little Chef Lodge was built at Barton Stacey in order to fully cater for the weary traveller. The Little Chef Lodge then became a Travelodge in the 1990s along with all of the other Little Chef Lodge hotels. The site really had it all.
In terms of television, Barton Stacey Services and the outside of the Little Chef appeared in an episode of Top Gear.
Today, the Little Chef at Barton Stacey is still operating today and is one of the oldest surviving in the UK. It seems to be a great hotspot for holidaymakers travelling west along the A303.