From drab and dull facilities to leaky showers, undercooked grub and non-existent WiFi – any experienced truck driver will have visited some disappointing truck stops. However, there are also some great stops out there doing their best to provide a top-notch service to hungry and tired drivers. Here we celebrate five of the best truck stops in the UK as chosen by real UK haulage drivers. Whether it’s tasty food or old-school charm, these stops have wowed truckers from the top to the bottom of the country.
AWJ Penrith Truckstop
CA11 9EH www.AWJtruckstop.co.uk
AWJ Penrith is known for its lovely location and great facilities. Facilities are key to a good HGV stop and AWJ Penrith is one of the best. With fuel, Wi-Fi, showers and food, everything a truck driver needs is in one place. All the facilities are easily accessible for a quick break if you want to grab something for the road. However, if you’re parking up for the night you can sleep in peace as they have secure parking with 24 hour patrols.
Smokey Joe’s Truck Stop
TR16 5BJ www.smokeyjoesofcornwall.co.uk/
Smokey Joe’s is situated off the main A30 bypass at the A3047 intersection. While it may not have as many mod-cons as some on the list, this is made up for by plentiful food and lots of character. This stop is a must for those travelling south and offers overnight parking, a shower and a meal at great value, with a bit of classic 60’s rock thrown in for free. There is no comparison between this charming Cornish eatery and a bland service station.
J38 Truck Stop
CA10 3SS www.westmorlandfamily.com
Lots of drivers recommended the J38 Truck Stop – its quick breakfasts-to-go served from an Airstream trailer are very popular as well. The stop has all the facilities a truck driver needs, including fuel. The stop serves home-cooked meals and members of their Truck Drivers Club can benefit from regular offers.
Lockerbie Lorry Park
J16 & J17, M74 www.lockerbielorrypark.co.uk
As many drivers will know, finding a decent place to park up for the night north of Carlisle can be difficult. This is probably why Lockerbie Lorry Park is so popular, just 50 yards from the M74. Lockerbie is one of the only owner-operated, purpose-built lorry parks around and offers the weary truck driver a full range of facilities including Sky Sports on the TV! Lockerbie Lorry Park also has a bar and is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
CA10 3SB www.tebayservices.com
Tebay Services are renowned for their fresh, local food with images of the beautifully presented farm shop often making appearances on social media. The services have real community-led values and try to support local farms and businesses. They are also one of the largest local employers in the area. If you want to see what they are doing – in recently renovated buildings – drop in next time you are driving up the M6.
Norman Dulwich is a Correspondent for Haulage Exchange, the leading online trade network for the road transport industry. Haulage Exchange provides services for matching a truck driver with available haulage jobs. Over 4,500 transport exchange businesses are networked together through their website, trading jobs and capacity in a safe 'wholesale' environment.