Roadside Cafes For Owner Drivers

After a hard day of courier work on the road, there is little as rewarding as seeing the turning up ahead for your favourite roadside café. But when you’re carrying out courier jobs in unfamiliar territory it can be hard to tell which roadside joints are worth making a pit-stop for. Here is a list of what we feel are some of the best:

#5 – The Quarry Café

Located near to the junction of the A487 and A489, this vegan café is affiliated with the nearby Centre for Alternative Technology and eating here is an excellent way of off-setting your carbon footprint whilst carrying out your courier work. This café serves delicious wholemeal pizzas and veggie burgers and the fact that it has been around for over 28 years is a testament to the quality of the food.

#4 – Haldon Grill

Known by locals as ‘The Grill on the Hill’ this eatery, owned by Andy and Lisa Harvey, gives a friendly West-Country twist to the typical old-school American diner. The joint is not only frequented by those travelling long-distance on their courier jobs, but also by walkers in the area exploring the Haldon Ridge. The grill specialises in hearty cuisine and offers a range of meals from chicken curry, cottage pie, vegetable bakes and lasagne. However, it is Lisa’s home-cooked gooey flapjacks that have earned the diner its legendary status.

#3 – The Red Bus Café

The Red Bus Café is a famous sight on the A64 Leeds -York road and is parked on the lay-by opposite The Flying Horse Farm. Although the bus was once a secret amongst courier workers in the business it was soon descended on by the masses once word got out amongst travellers en-route to the Leeds Festival. The bacon and egg sandwiches served from the bus are according to food critics ‘the best in the world’ and the dishes offer excellent value for money.

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#2 – The Ace Café

This roadside jaunt is popular with owner drivers in the London area, and certainly those with a love of all things Americana. If you work as a courier there’s a good chance that you love all forms of transport and in a nod to the days of the T-birds and Ton up Boys the café has a large collection of motors and motorcycles. If you’re lucky enough to have a self-employed courier job in this area on the first Wednesday of the month, then you may chance upon the famous Hot Rod Night with live music and free entry.

#1 – The Little Chef at Popham Services

As an owner driver you’ve probably visited more Little Chefs than you can shake a stick at, but rest assured that this joint located en-route to Winchester is distinctly different. Culinary Magician, Heston Blumenthal took over this café in an attempt to change the brand image of the Little Chef and, as you can imagine from a man that invented snail porridge and fluorescent green absinthe jelly, he’s put the fun back into pit-stops. The braised ox cheeks cooked in red wine for three days are a definite must try as is the green tea trifle sprinkled with popping candy.

Lyall Cresswell is the Managing Director of Courier Exchange, the world’s largest neutral trading hub for the Sameday courier and express freight exchange industry. Over 2,500 transport exchange businesses are networked together through their website, trading courier work and capacity in a safe ‘wholesale’ environment.

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