A new service station opens today on the M5 in Gloucestershire, promising not only a revolution in roadside food quality but also returns for food producers in the region.
The first phase of the £40million Gloucester Services marks the beginning of a partnership between the Westmorland Family business, which owns the new station, and the producers who will be supplying the venture. Of the 200 producers supplying Gloucester Services, 130 are from within a 30-mile radius of the M5 between Junctions 12 and 11a near Gloucester.
Sarah Dunning, CEO of Westmorland Family, which owns and operate the services as well as the original site in Tebay, Cumbria, said: "We believe proper food matters and it is this commitment to local sourcing and the community that really sets the business apart.
"It's important to us that we sell products of Gloucestershire for Gloucester and we relish the fact that our greatest opportunity as a business is that we are able to bring exceptional local products to a much wider audience.
"Not only are we creating jobs within the business itself, we are investing in local businesses and the community and contributing to the protection and creation of jobs."
Once completed – a southbound service area opens in 2015 – the project will employ 300 people and pour an estimated £10 million into Gloucestershire community projects over ten years.
Mark Gale, from the Gloucestershire Gateway Trust, said: "This co-working between business and charity pushes the boundaries of social investment."
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