Britain’s most expensive petrol station – where drivers pay a £1,200 premium

Motorists at Britain's most expensive petrol station are paying almost GBP1,200 more each year to fill up their car than at the cheapest forecourt, analysis reveals. The average cost of a litre of petrol ranged from GBP1.35 to GBP1.77 a litre in June across Britain's more than 8,000 petrol stations, according to comparison website PetrolPrices. The most expensive forecourt was Strensham services, a BP motorway station located between junction seven and eight of the M5 motorway, where motorists paid GBP97.46 to fill up a 55L car.

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But in Whitby, North Yorkshire, home to Britain's cheapest petrol, the same tank cost GBP74.58 - a difference of almost GBP23.

If a driver was to fill up their car every week for a year assuming June's prices, it would cost GBP1,189.76 more at the motorway services. While many drivers have become accustomed to motorway services charging a premium for fuel,[1] the data also revealed large discrepancies between what different service stations charge. Four junctions before the nation's most expensive petrol station on the M5 charged GBP1.52 a litre in June - a saving of GBP712 a year, according to data compiled by PetrolPrices for The Telegraph.

There were also huge price variations across Britain. Petrol was most expensive in London[2] where the average cost of a litre last month was GBP1.46, according to the data.

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Meanwhile it was 2.5p cheaper on average in the North East of England. However, by far the cheapest region for petrol last month was in Northern Ireland[3] where the average price of a litre was GBP1.41.

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The findings have angered campaigners who have demanded an end to the "postcode lottery" of prices. Luke Bosdet, of motoring body the AA, said there was "absolutely no doubt" this was down to the introduction of the Fuel Price Checker by the Consumer Council for Northern Ireland.

The competition watchdog first introduced the tracker in September 2020 to show drivers the average price of fuel and the cheapest price in every town in Northern Ireland. The site saw a 526pc increase in monthly hits between 2022 and 2021 following Russia's invasion of Ukraine which sent global oil prices spiralling. "That was the value the Northern Irish drivers put on being able to find out what was the average price in a town and what was the cheapest price," Mr Bosdet said.

There are hopes a similar price tracker will be introduced in the rest of Britain by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) watchdog after a Bill to grant the watchdog more power was rushed through Parliament ahead of the election. The CMA is currently trialling a PumpWatch fuel price transparency scheme, with 14 of the biggest retailers providing prices on a daily basis, but public knowledge remains low and those that have signed up account for approximately only 35pc of service stations.

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Simon Williams, head of policy at breakdown provider the RAC, said: "We continue to call on retailers to play fair with drivers as our analysis of data provided by the Competition and Markets Authority consistently shows that the individual retailers will charge wildly different prices entirely dependent on location. We badly need to bring an end to this postcode lottery in fuel retailing.

"If retailers in Northern Ireland can sell petrol for 4.5p cheaper than the UK average of 145p and diesel for 8p cheaper than the average of 150.4p, it can surely be done on this side of the Irish sea too." Mr Bosdet said the CMA's price tracker could lead to a "sea change in the prices drivers pay for their fuel on motorways and main routes". He added: "It's all going to change.

Drivers will be able to zero in on the cheapest prices and be able to go there. "That has the added benefit that not only are drivers saving but it's putting pressure on the more expensive fuel stations to bring their prices down or else lose customers." "There is going to be a sea change in what drivers are going to be paying for their fuel on motorways and main routes.

There is going to be this big sucking sound as drivers are pulled away from the extravagant sites to the cheaper ones."

BP was approached for comment.


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  1. ^ charging a premium for fuel, (
  2. ^ Petrol was most expensive in London (
  3. ^ the cheapest region for petrol last month was in Northern Ireland (
  4. ^ Recommended 'This is the worst we've seen': why sales of new cars are crumbling