Popham Services is a small service station located on the westbound side of the A303 near Popham, Hampshire. It is the first service station to be encountered on the A303 if you are travelling west from the M3 and it is the partner site of Micheldever Services which is located on the eastbound side just opposite.
Facilities and LocationEdit
Forecourt: BP, Wild Bean Café, M&S Simply Food, AdBlue Cannisters
Restaurant: Little Chef, Little Chef Express
Other: ChargeMaster Electric Vehicle Charging Point
LOCATION: A303 Westbound, Popham, Basingstoke, Hampshire, SO21 3SP
Popham Services is the newer partner of Micheldever Services, the eastbound services located opposite which dates back to the 1980s. Popham opened in the mid 1990s, sporting a BP filling station and a Little Chef restaurant which opened in 1995. A year later in 1996, Granada took over Little Chef from Forte and decided, in order to give some Little Chef sites a second restaurant option, to bring in Burger King to certain sites which were fairly busy everyday. Popham received a Burger King in the extension area of the Little Chef but it closed in the mid 2000s.
In 2006, Popham received a Coffee Tempo! outlet in order to occupy the empty Burger King area and to serve travellers who were on the move quickly without the need to sit in the restaurant and wait. This however closed in 2008.
In 2008, Popham became an iconic Little Chef as celebrity chef, Heston Blumenthal, came to the site and gave the menu and restaurant interior a complete refurbishment, sporting more British classics such as Braised Ox Cheeks and Scottish Mussels and of course Ab Rogers' interior design, featuring red furniture and a blue sky ceiling in order to represent Ian Pegler's, the Little Chef manager back then, common use of the saying "Blue Sky Thinking" when he wanted to see Heston bring in something eye catching. The new restaurant saw endless waits of up to two hours for some of the time according to Pegler, a place in the Good Food Guide and a further two branches, York East and Kettering West, being given the Heston look followed by ten more branches being given a lighter version of the refurbishment in 2011. The celebrity chef's turnaround of Little Chef can be watched on the Channel 4 documentary, Big Chef takes on Little Chef, which was released in January 2009.
In 2013, Heston's iconic dishes were removed from the Little Chef menu forever and were replaced with typical Little Chef dishes again. Around this time, the Little Chef also recieved a Little Chef Express in order to continue to provide travellers with a take away option.
|none||Services on the A303||
Barton Stacey (6 miles)
Solstice Park (24 miles)
Amesbury (25 miles)
Chicklade (42 miles)
West Knoyle (45 miles)