|County||Dumfries and Galloway|
The Collin branch was a former Little Chef on the A75 around a mile to the east of Dumfries.
Opened between 1982 and 1984, Collin typified the Little Chef style of the era with the flat roof and big windows facing out over the road. The A75 is a road linking south west Scotland and the ferry ports of Cairnryan and Stranraer with the M74 motorway. It feeds many towns and intersects with many routes to the north. 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 the edge of Dumfries, the largest town in the area, to help encourage locals. The site chosen also had a filling station and could be accessed from both sides of the road so Little Chef had all angles covered.
The 90s saw a lot of positive developments for the site. Firstly, Dumfries gained a bypass, meaning that longer distance traffic was less likely to venture into the town to stop, making the Little Chef even more attractive. Then, by the mid 90s, Forte had added a Travelodge to the site and, towards the end of the 90s, then owners Granada opened a Burger King in a new extension to the building. This site really had it all.
Sadly change came in 2012. By this time Little Chef had passed through the hands of a number of owners and was now under the control of Venture Capital firm R Capital. In a bit to make the company more profitable, R Capital decided to cull 67 sites that it deemed to be underperforming with Collin sadly making the list. Originally it was due to be closed by the end of January 2012 but, due to an agreement with Travelodge, now the landlords of the site, Collin Little Chef was able to soldier on to the end of September 2012. There was hope that this stay of execution might lead to it being saved but sadly the shutters came down in September. A sad end to a once very prosperous site.
After the Little Chef closed, it briefly became an independent known as the Curly Coo which pretty much retained the Little Chef look. However, it was gone by 2015 and has since remained vacant.
Today the Travelodge and filling station still trade and the A75 continues to be a busy strategic route in the south of Scotland, causing many to believe there is still room for a Little Chef here