The owners of Britain’s best motorway service station, Tebay in Cumbria, have waited four decades to open a second one, on the M5 in Gloucestershire. With a grass roof and excellent cakes, it’s a place that Bilbo Baggins might appreciate.
First published on Beacon. Continue reading “Cake, tea and pork pie at Hobbit motorway services”
My latest article on Beacon focuses on three towns in nothern Cornwall: Bodmin, Padstow and Rock. Padstow and Rock have become known for their good food and the associated tourism that brings, through restaurants such as Rick Stein’s and Nathan Outlaw’s. Now, Bodmin wants to follow suit.
I wrote about Bodmin just over a year ago for the Guardian; for Beacon I caught up with the councillor who showed me around Bodmin’s Beacon technology park (no relation) and the town’s economic progress. Cornwall Council has decided to build new offices in Bodmin, and BT may use some of the space for its joint-venture with the county’s state sector. Continue reading “Bodmin, Padstow and Rock: making good food Cornwall’s bread and butter”
If you were looking for parts of the economy to nationalise, luxury hotels would probably be low on most people’s lists – and for the last three decades, British governments have mainly privatised, not nationalised, with most of Royal Mail being privatised this week.
Having just spent a week in a different parador – Spain’s nationalised chain of hotels – every night, that’s a bit of a shame. Not because hotel accommodation urgently needs to become part of the public sector, but because it’s difficult to imagine any organisation but a government doing what Spain has done with several paradores: take a fantastic but decrepit old building and make it usable again. Continue reading “Spain’s nationalised heritage paradores: unlikely in Britain, sadly”
Last week saw two healthcare policy ideas discussed. One sounds fairly promising, the other is fairly silly. Fortunately, the former is the one that is likely to prevail. Continue reading “Exercise or lose benefits idea fails friends and family test”
There are plenty of reasons to visit Britain’s cathedrals, including faith, history and spectacular architecture. Formerly, food may not have been one of them. However, along with other improvements in British cuisine, my research suggests that it is now possible to find good cathedral food – if not in the same building, then in a suitably Christian location not far away. Continue reading “The good cathedral food guide to Hereford, Brecon, Chester and London”