Tebay Services
Tebay Services is located in Cumbria
Tebay Services
Tebay Services
Location in Cumbria, England
Tebay Services is located in the former Eden District
Tebay Services
Tebay Services
Location in former Eden District, Cumbria
Tebay Services is located in UK motorways
Tebay Services
Tebay Services
Location on the UK motorway network
Coordinates:54°27′00″N 2°36′29″W / 54.45°N 2.608°W / 54.45; -2.608
OperatorWestmorland Motorway Services Ltd
Northbound services
Date openedJune 1972[1]
Southbound services
Date opened1993[1]

Tebay Services are motorway service stations on the M6 motorway in the Westmorland and Furness district of Cumbria, England. The northbound opened in 1972 and the southbound in 1993. They are known for their family-run business which eschews the typical facilities at British motorway services for a farm shop and buildings in keeping with the local environment.


The services are between junctions 38 and 39, on the ascent from the Lune Valley to Shap summit. As the north and southbound carriageways diverge at this point, the two service areas are not actually adjacent to each other but a couple of hundred metres apart.[2] The services are a mile north of junction 38, which is adjacent to the village of Tebay, although the services are in the civil parish of Orton.


Tebay West Services, which serves the northbound carriageway, was opened in June 1972 by Peter Walker, Baron Walker of Worcester, two years after the M6 section between Lancaster and Penrith was completed.[3] [4][5]

The M6 here passes through an environmentally sensitive area, and the services were sited in this location to fit in with the surrounding local area and provide a view away from the motorway. A corresponding southbound services, Killington Lake Services, was constructed at the same time, opening the previous month.[6]

Tebay East was opened in 1993, serving southbound traffic.[4] Both are operated by an independent family-owned company, Westmorland Motorway Services, rather than a national chain.[7] The same company runs Truckstop Services at junction 38 (just off the B6260 at Old Tebay), which opened in 1986 and caters for HGV and long-distance coaches,[4] and Gloucester Services between junctions 11a and 12 of the M5 in Gloucestershire, which was built into the side of a hill and covered with grass to reduce its visual impact.[7]


Tebay Services are in open countryside surrounded by trees, small lakes and panoramas of the Cumbrian landscape, and has its own duck pond.[8] Westmorland shun typical motorway service food outlets. Instead, both Tebay outlets have award-winning farm shops, which sell local meat and other food, and insist on using local suppliers.[7][9] The services have been praised as being the best in the country.[10] In 2003, Westmorland won Best Local Retailer in BBC Radio 4's Food and Farming Awards, and in 2006 they were awarded Best Motorway Services in Britain by Which?.[11] The farm shops, which sell locally sourced produce, were officially opened by Prince Charles in 2004.[4]

In addition, the northbound service area has a caravan park and a hotel. This site also serves as the head office for Westmorland Motorway Services.[4]


Comedian Gary Delaney has described Tebay Services as "...the Daniel Kitson of services", a reference to comedian Daniel Kitson's reputation as an accomplished comedic writer and performer who rarely appears in the media and therefore relies greatly on word of mouth.[12]

Appearing on Top Gear: Extra Gear, comedian John Robins named Tebay northbound and southbound as two of his top three favourite motorway service stations.[13]

Fellow comedian Frank Skinner proclaimed on his Absolute Radio show that “if there is a road to heaven, Tebay Services would be the service station on that road”.


  1. ^ a b Motorway Services Trivia – Chronology – Accessed 21 January 2009
  2. ^ "Tebay Services". Google Maps. Retrieved 6 March 2020.
  3. ^ Manchester Evening News Tuesday 16 May 1972, page 7
  4. ^ a b c d e "Tebay Services". Visit Cumbria. Retrieved 6 March 2020.
  5. ^ "M6 Through Westmorland J35 to J40 – Dates". The Motorway Archive. Retrieved 6 March 2020.
  6. ^ "M6 Through Westmorland J35 to J40". The Motorway Archive. Retrieved 6 March 2020.
  7. ^ a b c "Family-owned motorway services profit by shunning burgers". Financial Times. 6 February 2017. Archived from the original on 11 December 2022. Retrieved 6 March 2020.
  8. ^ ""Tebay services on the M6 near Penrith was judged the best"". The Times. 18 November 2006. p. 17. Retrieved 6 March 2020.
  9. ^ "Lune Gorge". Motorway Archive. 6 March 2020.
  10. ^ "The M6 services where all the jams are home made". The Daily Telegraph. 7 March 2006. Retrieved 6 March 2020.
  11. ^ "Awards". Tebay Services. Retrieved 6 March 2020.
  12. ^ "Episode 43 – Fake Excuses, McCartney News & Some Special Toilets from Elis James and John Robins on Radio X Podcast". podbay.[dead link]
  13. ^ "Extra Gear - Episode 4". BBC. 19 June 2016. Retrieved 10 September 2023.

Next southbound:Killington Lake Motorway service stations on theM6 motorway Next northbound:Southwaite