Maximise these sporadic sunny days (when the weather plays along) with a picnic or al fresco pit stop wrapped in views at one of these lovely local eateries. Far better than the services.

Kirklinton Hall

M6, Junction 44

Glorious ruins of a 17th century manor and its walled garden being slowly restored, but in the meantime fantastically whimsical. The gardens are gorgeous, lawns lush and wooden glens feature a fairy trail. Tea and cake is on sale in the cafe.

The Apple Store Cafe

M6, Junction 33

Housed in an old Victorian greenhouse, the Apple Store and its hearty food is sheltered from the showers, but when the sun shines, spill out into the garden where there are swings to swing on, trees to climb and pretty tables beneath the trees.

The Farmer’s Table

M5, Junction 14

Food from the Tortworth Estate and nearby surrounds served against views of the Cotswolds. When the sun shines, grab a seat on the terrace to take full advantage.

The Tollgate

M4, Junction 18

Perched on a hill with panoramic views across Bristol, the Severn and to the Welsh Hills, the Tollgate is a uniquely beautiful tea room. Ask for a carrot and you can feed the resident Shetland ponies, Honey and Bramble too.

The Green Man

M11, Junction 7

A lovey country pub in the Essex countryside with a pretty, greenery-fringed terrace out front that’s popular for evening drinks and lazy lunches on sunny days.

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Hear comes the weekend

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Willow Brook Farm Shop

A1, Junction A47

A fab little cafe serving wholesome food made with ingredients sourced from the farm shop against views over the Cambridgeshire fields.

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Costa Del Cambridgeshire

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The Barn at Beale

A1, Junction Holy Island

Overlooking Lindisfarne Island and the Northumbrian countryside, the vistas at the Barn at Beale are spectacular, and the food locally sourced and delicious.

The Barn at Upper Stowe

M1, Junction 16

Home made cakes and fresh meals and snacks set in a charming old farm now turned over to crafts. Take your cuppa out the courtyard picnic benches or pay the pygmy goats a visits.

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