Leon takes new turn with first roadside restaurant deal

Leon West End opening 8

Fast food chain Leon has signed a franchise deal with Roadchef that will see its first roadside restaurants open this summer and kickstart its expansion into the sector.

Leon said it plans to open “many more” roadside sites over the next five years although it did not give a specific number.

Roadchef, one of the largest Motorway Service Area (MSA) operators in the UK, has picked two of its flagship sites at Norton Canes (M6 toll) and Strensham South (M5) to house the two new restaurants, which are due to open in early August.

This deal will give millions of Roadchef guests the opportunity to try popular dishes that have been on the menu since Leon’s first store opened in 2004. The range will be complemented with newer dishes, all of which follow the Leon principles that food should taste good, do you good and be affordable.

The agreement is part of Roadchef’s drive to offer the UK’s travelling public a wider choice that mirrors the diversity found on the high street. The company operates 30 service area sites across the UK, with around 52 million motorists visiting every year.

“We strive to offer our customers a range of different food options to refuel while travelling that will refresh, revive and reinvigorate them so they can continue on their journeys safely,” said Simon Turl, CEO of Roadchef.

“We scoured the market for a brand that would complement our existing offering and Leon, with its impressive naturally fast food credentials, stood out. We are thrilled that Leon has chosen Roadchef as the partner to introduce their brand to the motorway network. Our two companies share a people focused culture and we are confident that our customers will be impressed with what Leon has to offer.”

The new Leon restaurants will see nearly 60 jobs being created at both Roadchef sites and will contribute towards Highways England and the Department of Transport’s initiative to encourage MSA operators to focus on the wellbeing of motorway users in the UK.

Leon managing director, John Upton, said: “We have always said we want LEON to be where it was most needed – either on the high street or easy to find when you’re out and about.”

Leon currently operates almost 50 stores in the UK.

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