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England's Controversial 'Motorway Pub' Opens Today

Photo: JD Wetherspoon

A British restaurant group is throwing open the doors to England's very first "motorway pub" today. According to the Guardian, The Hope and Champion pub is England's first pub to be located at a highway rest stop, about 25 miles northwest of London. Owned by JD Wetherspoon, the pub apparently offers plenty of non-alcoholic drinks as well as a food menu. The Hope and Champion will be open from 4 a.m. - 1 a.m., with alcohol available from 9 a.m. until close.

Not surprisingly, there have been plenty of complaints that putting a pub at a highway service station is not a good idea. The main concern has been that a "motorway pub" will encourage drunk driving, presenting, as one anti drunk-driving spokesperson put it, "a potentially deadly temptation to drivers." According to the Independent, a recent poll revealed that just 12% of the public "support the idea of having pubs of [sic] motorways." The Guardian's Mark Wallace offers a different view, noting that "every other pub in the land" is located on a road of some kind and that it is up to drivers to behave responsibly. It remains to be seen whether the community will come around to Wallace's view and embrace the roadside pint.

· There's Nothing Wrong With Opening a Pub by a Motorway [Guardian]
· JD Wetherspoon Opens First Motorway Pub [Independent]
· All Pub Coverage on Eater [-E-]

The Hope and Champion

M40 Beaconsfield Service Area, M40 Junction 2, A355, Windsor Drive, Beaconsfield, Buckinghamshire HP9 2SE, United Kingdom

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