Gruel Britannia: 10 Abandoned Little Chef Restaurants

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[ By Steve in Abandoned Places & Architecture. ]

abandoned Little Chef restaurant Wansford 1a
Serving up American style with British flavor, hundreds of Little Chef roadside restaurants once warmed up the UK‘s motorways but less than 80 remain today.

abandoned Little Chef restaurant Wansford 1b

abandoned Little Chef restaurant Wansford 1c

abandoned Little Chef restaurant Wansford 1d

“Once a familiar site by the roadside for greasy grub and indifferent service!,” according to Flickr user mad jeff, Little Chef was to the British Isles what Howard Johnson’s was to the USA – less the hotel rooms, swimming pools and fried clams. Founded in 1958 by Sam Alper, an entrepreneur admittedly influenced by America’s diners in the golden age of postwar road travel, Little Chef ballooned to 439 locations by the turn of the century… and you know what happens to balloons. The store above, located off the A1 motorway near Wansford, was one of the first Little Chef locations and stands (barely) today as a symbol of the once-robust chain’s astonishing slide into dereliction.

Kent Found On Roadside Dead

abandoned Little Chef restaurant Kentford 1a

abandoned Little Chef restaurant Kentford 1b

abandoned Little Chef restaurant Kentford 1c

abandoned Little Chef restaurant Kentford 1d

abandoned Little Chef restaurant Kentford 1e

According to the brazenly optimistic Little Chef website, “we’ve grown to become one of the UK’s favourite roadside restaurants with 78 Little Chef restaurants from Scotland down to Cornwall.” 78 and counting… downward. Most pundits blame Little Chef’s inexorable death spiral on inconsistent ownership looking only to squeeze a few more pounds sterling out of the business before flipping it; a scenario that’s played out a jaw-dropping SEVEN times since the mid-1970s. The dreary images of an abandoned Little Chef located just off the A14 in Kentford, eastern England, come to us courtesy of Nosher.net who states, “discarded cassette tapes litter the area”. Nice.

Bypassed

abandoned Little Chef restaurant A46 Binley Woods 1a

abandoned Little Chef restaurant A46 Binley Woods 1b

abandoned Little Chef restaurant A46 Binley Woods 1c

Here’s a rather rough-looking abandoned Little Chef situated by the A46 Coventry by-pass near Binley Woods in Warwickshire. This store was one of a group of restaurants closed following the sale of the Little Chef chain to RCapital, a UK private equity group, in January of 2007. Kudos to Geograph member David Lally for documenting the state of the store in July of 2007 – one can only imagine what it looks like now assuming it hasn’t been bulldozed.

Sufferin’ In Suffolk

abandoned Little Chef restaurant Suffolk 1a

abandoned Little Chef restaurant Suffolk 1b

abandoned Little Chef restaurant Suffolk 1c

These evocative images of an abandoned Little Chef somewhere in Suffolk, eastern England were taken by Flickr user will2988 in May and June of 2013. Though originally modeled after classic diners and burger stands over the pond, Little Chef made efforts to appeal to the unique taste of domestic travelers with all-day breakfasts and traditional British fare such as bangers & beans with chips (fried potatoes) and even Ox Cheeks. Sorry, no Spam Eggs Sausage & Spam.

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A Complicated Salad

funny auto-correct texts - A Complicated Salad

Husband was asking me to make pizza for dinner; I was suggesting salad, but Siri couldn’t seem to understand that. Every wrong word in this text was “salad”. I tried to list some of the salad ingredients to he’d understand, but that didn’t work either. Krissie is my sister.

Submitted by Alicia

The post A Complicated Salad appeared first on Damn You Auto Correct!.

Meltdown: 10 Semi-Sweet Abandoned Chocolate Factories

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[ By Steve in Abandoned Places & Architecture. ]

Abandoned Hershey Chocolate Factory smokestacks cocoa bushes
Chocolate factories were once fragrant masters of their delicious domains but many have fallen victim to high costs, cocoa shortages and changing market tastes.

abandoned Hershey chocolate factory Pennsylvania smokestacks

abandoned Hershey chocolate factory Pennsylvania demolition

Hershey, Pennsylvania, is known as “The Sweetest Place on Earth” though residents can’t be blamed for feeling a bit bitter: the historic Hershey Chocolate Factory closed in 2010 after operating for 105 years. Much of the former factory on East Chocolate Avenue was demolished over the past two years though Hershey is legally bound to preserve the iconic twin smokestacks and “cocoa bushes” regardless of future developments.

Home Sweet Home

Sebastian Liste Urban Quilombo abandoned chocolate factory Brazil

Sebastian Liste Urban Quilombo abandoned chocolate factory Brazil

In 2009 photographer Sebastian Liste embarked upon Urban Quilombo, a photo-documentary odyssey that opened a window into the lives of dozens of families who occupied Galpao da Araujo Barreto, an abandoned chocolate factory in Salvador de Bahia, Brazil. Creating a community to shield themselves from the violent crime surrounding them, residents of the old chocolate factory managed to scratch out an existence suffused by sorrow shot through with flashes of joy.

Sebastian Liste Urban Quilombo abandoned chocolate factory Brazil

In March of 2011, Brazilian government authorities evicted the families from the factory as part of their effort to “cleanse” cities scheduled to host events of the 2014 FIFA World Cup and the 2016 Summer Olympic Games. The families who formerly occupied the abandoned chocolate factory were resettled in a new neighborhood, “Jardim das Margaridas”, where Liste continue to document their lives.

Bristol Brush-Off

abandoned Elizabeth Shaw chocolate factory Bristol UK

abandoned Elizabeth Shaw chocolate factory Bristol UK

abandoned Elizabeth Shaw chocolate factory Bristol UK

Elizabeth Shaw has really let herself go. The Elizabeth Shaw chocolate factory in Bristol, UK, opened in 1881 and closed in late 2006 ostensibly due to its machinery needing a massive updating the company simply could not afford. It would seem the entire complex – both manufacturing and administrative – was abandoned with very little salvaging of anything valuable. Kudos to urban explorer Nero21 for risking life and limb to snap a few photos of the factory interior, where trays of moldy chocolate fill the stagnant air with a pungent aroma of sadness and decay.

Cadburied

Adelaide Australia abandoned Cadbury chocolate factory

Adelaide Australia abandoned Cadbury chocolate factory

This former Cadbury chocolate factory in Adelaide, Australia seems to have been abandoned for quite some time. How can you tell? Well, signage faded by the fierce and unrelenting Outback sun offers one clue while the stowed 1959 Ford delivery (or “despatch”) wagon parked inside offers another. Full props to Weekend Notes for the evocative images above.

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