South Mimms services

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South Mimms Services
South Mimms Services.jpg
South Mimms services is located in Hertfordshire
South Mimms services
South Mimms services (Hertfordshire)
Coordinates:51°41′13″N 0°13′23″W / 51.686927°N 0.222956°W / 51.686927; -0.222956Coordinates: 51°41′13″N 0°13′23″W / 51.686927°N 0.222956°W / 51.686927; -0.222956
Operator:Welcome Break
Date opened:1986
Website:Welcome Break

South Mimms services is a motorway service area accessible from junction 23 of the M25 motorway near South Mimms. Constructed in 1986 as the first service area on the M25, it is operated by Welcome Break. It is built on the site of Bignell's Corner, named after a garden centre, Bignell and Cutbush, which was close to the junction of the old A6, and A1.[1][2][3] At the junction there was also a pub, the Middlesex Arms, and an Esso Motor hotel, near which developed a notorious truck stop, the Beacon Cafe, infamous for the selling of black market goods, and for prostitution.[3][4][5][2]


When constructed in 1986,[6] it was the first service area directly accessible from the M25.

The building was destroyed in August 1998 following a fire started in a deep fryer with no fire suppression system; an incident which has been subsequently studied.[7]

The service area was chosen in 2012 by a journalist for research into how typical modern service area design with hedgerows surrounding the parking areas can provide an attractive habitat to brown rats.[8]

An unusual heist of 2,900 dresses all of the same design occurred in the lorry park at the service area on the morning of 13 August 2013. The loot was valued at £17000.[9]


  1. ^ Issues, The London Gazette, 25 August 1989, page 9937
  2. ^ a b Mymshall Brook - Bignall's Corner Edith's Streets; London Local History, 1 April 2013
  3. ^ a b A History of the County of Middlesex: Volume 5, A P Baggs, 1976, pp. 271-282. South Mimms: Introduction'
  4. ^ Mark Roodhouse (21 March 2013). Black Market Britain: 1939-1955. Oxford University Press. p. 84.
  5. ^ Bignell's_Corner,
  6. ^ Motorway Services Trivia - Chronology Archived 2 April 2009 at the Wayback Machine. - Accessed 16 February 2009
  7. ^ Out of the frying pan… by VOELKERT C; in the Fire prevention Journal ISSN 0309-6866 CODEN FPRVD7 1998, no314, pp. 24-26
  8. ^ Sam Shead (18 September 2012). "Picnic benches provide breeding grounds at M25 pit-stop". London: Associated Newspapers Ltd. Retrieved 4 October 2013.
  9. ^ Hannah Crouch. "Thousands of dresses stolen from South Mimms services". Tindle Newspapers Ltd. Retrieved 4 October 2013.

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