Motorway services that sell Ramen noodle broth from porcini mushrooms

Motorway services that sell Ramen noodle broth from porcini mushrooms

The motorway services that sell Ramen noodle broth from foraged porcini mushrooms, hand-baked bread and marmalade also on the shelves in Fortnum & Mason (no wonder it’s become TV’s surprise hit of the year!)

  • Tebay Services on the M6 in Cumbria has been offering motorists fancy food sourced for nearly 50 years 
  • It sells Ramen noodle broth, hand-baked bread and marmalade available in Fortnum & Mason to customers
  • First episode of new Channel 4 series A Lake District Farm Shop attracted last Saturday 1.4 million viewers
  • More viewers tuned in to watch the programme than the coinciding coverage of Wimbledon on BBC2 

A television documentary about family-run service station that sells gourmet food including Ramen noodle broth from foraged porcini mushrooms, hand-baked bread and marmalade available in Fortnum & Mason has proved more popular than the Wimbledon final. 

Far from serving up burger concessions, coffee shops and gambling machines, Tebay Services on the M6 in Cumbria has been offering motorists fancy food sourced from local farmers and local producers for nearly 50 years.

Founded in 1972 by John and Barbara Dunning, now in their eighties, when the M6 was built across their farm, Britain’s first family-run service station has been building a faithful following, with some customers travelling hundreds of miles to sample their Sunday Roast.

Its popularity is now set to soar after the first episode of new Channel 4 series A Lake District Farm Shop about the service station – which aired last Saturday – attracted 1.4 million viewers, 500,000 more than average for its time slot on C4.

More viewers tuned in to watch the programme than the coinciding coverage of Wimbledon on BBC2, attracting triple the usual number of under-35s, according to the Sunday Times.

Speaking exclusively to MailOnline, Tebay Services owner Sarah Dunning is thrilled by the response and said there has been ‘real interest in the products that have been featured in the programme’. 

‘The TV company approached us and we agreed to make the series because we thought they would share our objectives of celebrating Cumbrian farmers and producers,’ she said.

The show has spawned surprise stars, including head butcher Dave Morland, who serves up enormous roast dinners and who was filmed by C4 selecting Herdwick sheep a year before they are butchered

Alex Evans, the services’ head buyer, tells viewers his philosophy is ‘just because you’re travelling on the motorway doesn’t mean you don’t want great food’ and makes a six-hour round trip to pick up cherries from a Worcestershire farm twice a week during the season because he believes their fruit is the best 

Far from serving up burger concessions, coffee shops and gambling machines, Tebay Services on the M6 in Cumbria has been offering motorists fancy food sourced from local farmers and local producers for nearly 50 years

Speaking exclusively to MailOnline, Tebay Services owner Sarah Dunning is thrilled by the response and said there has been ‘real interest in the products that have been featured in the programme’

The show has spawned surprise stars, including head butcher Dave Morland, who serves up enormous roast dinners and who was filmed by C4 selecting Herdwick sheep a year before they are butchered

Its popularity is now set to soar after the first episode of new Channel 4 series A Lake District Farm Shop about the service station – which aired last Saturday – attracted 1.4 million viewers, 500,000 more than average for its time slot on C4

A television documentary about family-run service station that sells gourmet food including Ramen noodle broth from foraged porcini mushrooms, hand-baked bread and marmalade available in Fortnum & Mason has proved more popular than the Wimbledon final

Tebay Services on the M6 in Cumbria has been offering motorists fancy food sourced from local farmers and local producers for nearly 50 years

Speaking exclusively to MailOnline, Tebay Services owner Sarah Dunning is thrilled by the response and said there has been ‘real interest in the products that have been featured in the programme’ 

‘The TV series has a wider theme than just Tebay Services and we were confident that they would reflect our business and the suppliers’ stories. There has been real interest in the products that have been featured in the programme.

‘We have had a lot of people coming for roast dinners since they saw it on the show.’ 

One of the station’s biggest hits among customers has been its Ramen noodle broth produced by Ambleside Chinese restaurant owners Bing Cao and Cara Ou, a husband and wife who kept their business afloat during lockdown by selling their Ramen packs to Tebay.  

The show has spawned surprise stars, including head butcher Dave Morland, who serves up enormous roast dinners and who was filmed by C4 selecting Herdwick sheep a year before they are butchered.

Staveley-based artisan baker Patrick Moore tells viewers he is ‘sending a love letter from the Lakes’ every time he makes a loaf.

Jane Hasell-McCosh, who lives with her husband at Dalemain Mansion, an 18th-century stately home outside Penrith, makes marmalade for Tebay, as well as Fortnum & Mason. She uses a 1680s recipe written by one of her husband’s ancestors, Elizabeth Rainbow, which was discovered in the house’s archives 20 years ago.

Shoppers Rachel Parsons, Paula Kelly and Jean Parsons from Coventry made a special trip to buy produce

Visitors from Hertfordshire Richard and Katie Ansell with Hadley Hope

A television documentary about family-run service station that sells gourmet food including Ramen noodle broth from foraged porcini mushrooms, hand-baked bread and marmalade available in Fortnum & Mason has proved more popular than the Wimbledon final

The show has spawned surprise stars, including head butcher Dave Morland, who serves up enormous roast dinners and who was filmed by C4 selecting Herdwick sheep a year before they are butchered

The Williams family – Sue, Ian, Anna and Josh from Cornwall – made a special point of dropping off at the services

One of the station’s biggest hits among customers has been its Ramen noodle broth produced by Ambleside Chinese restaurant owners Bing Cao and Cara Ou, a husband and wife who kept their business afloat during lockdown by selling their Ramen packs to Tebay

Breakout star head butcher Dave Morland with a customer at Tebay services on the M6

She said: ‘Tebay takes service stations to different levels, doesn’t it? It has become a destination.’

Another new star is Alex Evans, the services’ head buyer who used to work for Harrods. He tells viewers his philosophy is ‘just because you’re travelling on the motorway doesn’t mean you don’t want great food’ and makes a six-hour round trip to pick up cherries from a Worcestershire farm twice a week during the season because he believes their fruit is the best.

Mr Evans told The Sunday Times: ‘There is an assumption with motorway services that people are happy with average. You don’t leave your sensibilities behind just because you’re travelling on the motorway and you are tired and exhausted. We want people to have a little bit of joy.’

Tebay has stopped selling plastic bottled water and energy drinks and intends to remove branded chocolate bars by the autumn. It stopped selling cigarettes years ago. 

Ms Dunning gave up a career in the City to lead the business in 2005. In 2014, she doubled the number of outlets by opening the second station on the M5 near Gloucester. The company now employs more than 1,100 people in total. 

She revealed the company is considering opening a fourth outlet in Cheshire, with public consultation currently underway.  

Ms Dunning said her parents were unlikely entrepreneurs. When the M6 motorway from Birmingham to Scotland was built through their farm in the late 1960s, they saw it not as an inconvenience but an opportunity.

Part of their land was compulsorily purchased by the Government, which then invited bids to build a service station. The Dunnings won and in 1972 opened at Tebay on the northbound side under the brand Westmorland, the old county name for the area.

In the decades that followed, they and their partners added a hotel, then a southbound service area. 

Lamb and beef sold in the restaurant and on-site butcher comes from the farm, stocked with 1,500 sheep and 200 cattle. 

Source: Read Full Article