Hickstead little chef
Name Hickstead
Number 028 & 490
Year Opened Pre 1968 (original), 1993/94
Year Closed 1992/93 (original), 2017
Road A23/A2300
Location Hickstead, Haywards Heath
County West Sussex
Postcode RH17 5NZ

The Hickstead branch was a Little Chef restaurant located at the junction of the A23 and A2300 near the town of Haywards Heath.

Address and Onsite InformationEdit

ADDRESS: Hickstead Interchange, Hickstead, West Sussex. RH17 5NZ

ONSITE FACILITIES: Shell, Starbucks, Burger King, Travelodge (Book Room)


Originally, the Little Chef first opened in the 1960s on what used to be the original A23 at the Hickstead Crossroads. This Little Chef was one of four chosen Little Chefs to be featured on the famous Little Chef placemats. The other three were Gaerwen, Killiecrankie and Oxford. 

In 1992/93, the Little Chef at Hickstead closed and was demolished following major upgrades to the A23. However, Forte were keen to ensure that they maintained a presence along this section of the A23, therefore they made the decision to build a new Little Chef at the Ricebridge service station which was built at a new junction replacing the Hickstead Crossroads. The new restaurant was built alongside a filling station and a Travelodge hotel, providing the traveller with the perfect set of facilities. In the Granada era, a Burger King opened alongside the Little Chef so that a second food option could be provided. Compared to the old Hickstead site, the new site was much larger and offered more facilities, making it more attractive to travellers and increasing the Little Chef's chance of attracting the odd extra custom every now and then.

Compared to the other sites on the A23, the Hickstead Little Chef was by far the most successful as it was the only restaurant on the entire road to survive beyond 2006. However, despite a successful run, the Little Chef closed by June 2017, not because it was unsuccessful but because it fell victim to the Euro Garages takeover of Little Chef, where all restaurants were closed and replaced with brands such as Starbucks and Subway. The Hickstead Little Chef later reopened as a Starbucks outlet. The Burger King on the other hand is still trading today.