Brightside 3

Loungers has launched a roadside concept called Brightside, with the first location to open near Exeter, in February 2023.

The new brand, designed to reinvigorate roadside dining in the UK, will sit alongside their existing Lounge and Cosy Club brands.

The café-bar and restaurant group said it saw great potential to refresh this area of the eating out market which it believes has become “tired and uninspiring”.

Loungers has acquired three sites initially, the first of which will open on the A38, south of Exeter, early next year, and will be followed by locations on the A303 near Honiton and the A38 near Saltash, in the spring.

Longer-term, it believes there is scope to develop Brightside into a national brand, with plans to roll it out across the UK, with the majority of sites envisaged to be opened on A-roads.

The menu will feature a freshly cooked range of comfort-food style dishes, including an extensive brunch menu, burgers, pizzas and a kids’ menu.

Loungers said the new concept will share the same DNA and its other two, with a focus on all-day dining, and a commitment to value for money.

Alex Reilley, founder and chairman of Loungers, said: “We’ve had the itch for a while now to create a roadside restaurant concept that’s fit-for-purpose in the twenty-first century. For many people, the highlight of childhood road trips in days gone by was a stop at the likes of Little Chef.

“We believe there is a gap in the market for a fresh concept that gives customers the option to take a proper break and enjoy wholesome food and great hospitality, in a landscape that is currently dominated by drive-thru and QSR formats.”

Reilley said Loungers believed the concept would “really shake up what has become an uninspiring sector”.

Having accelerated its roll-out plans, Loungers is now targeting 30 new openings in the current financial year, with the three Brightside openings to fall within this forecast.

It recently opened its 210th site – Barco Lounge in Selby.